Daily Archives: 14 November 2010

Happy Bella Day

Today marks the one year anniversary since our adoption of our dog Bella. She’s a chow-shepherd mix who came from Indiana. They thought she was 4 when we brought her home, so today we celebrated her “5th” birthday.

For a 5-year-old dog, she is full of energy. She loves her walks. She gets at least four a day, two long and two short. One of her favorite routes goes by the vet. The routine involves going up to the door. When she actually needs to see the vet, we walk instead of drive, and she thinks it’s a bonus that she gets to go inside. She also likes to walk around the Old Res and go through Hayden Woods.

Bella likes to chase squirrels, patiently sitting at the base of trees, waiting for them to come down after they escape up. She also likes to hunt for rabbits. There are several that hang out in our backyard, and she’s always sniffing their trails. Sometimes she will chase them too, but they always get away. Her chasing habit sometimes extends to bicyclists and cars, so we really have be on alert when walking her.

She has a penchant for rolling in things that smell bad, like very rotten compost or dead things. We’ve had a few emergency visits to the dog wash, which were only possible after some preemptive cleanup to make it bearable to be in the car with her.

Bella is full of personality. I’m sure I’m projecting emotions on her, but she can be stubborn when she isn’t taking her preferred route on a walk or she needs to come inside when she isn’t ready.

She’s also a finicky eater. Most dogs like any kind of treats, but she only seems likes the really high-value ones. She will dis the ones she doesn’t like, just leaving them on the floor. She will also hoard the treats she thinks are special. When I leave for work in the mornings, I usually give her a certain kind of biscuit that she favors, and she will often still have it when I get home. When we give her a special treat, like rawhide or other animal parts, she carries it around for a while before she decides it’s time to enjoy it. We think it’s hilarious.

Bella seems to like bread quite a bit, especially challah. When we first got her, during the brief period when she had free reign of the house when she was alone, she consumed an entire loaf that was on the counter (and not on the edge). Another time, also in her period of free reign, she ate crusty rolls that were on the counter. First we discovered the plastic bag, not sure where it came from. She not only ate the rolls, but when upstairs and ate them in our bed, which was filled with crumbs. For this and some other reasons, Bella now has to stay in one room when she’s home alone. The room has lots of windows and her crate is there if she wants to hang out in there. She gets into a lot less trouble now.

Bella is also a pretty dog. People always admire her good looks. Today, we were at the outlets in Kittery. I was waiting outside while Howard shopped (believe it or not). Bella attracted a number of admirers, commenting on what a handsome dog she is!

Part of her birthday celebration was a beauty treatment at Laundromutt in Cambridge. We took her for a shampoo and a manicure. She actually hates getting a bath, but it was necessary preparation for her Thanksgiving vacation. We wanted her to smell good when she visits her grandparents, aunt, uncle, and cousins. It’s amazing how much smaller Bella is when her fluffy fur is wet down. She looks half her usual size.

Overall, we’re happy we have Bella in our lives. After a year with Bella, I can say she sure does keep us laughing.