December 25, 2014
Today was A.J.’s second Christmas with us. What a difference from last year! Last year I was struggling to walk him down the street. I didn’t leave the house for days after we put up the Christmas tree and put presents around it because I couldn’t leave A.J. alone with all that. We finally left him for a few hours after Christmas when the tree was still up but the presents were opened and put away. I still had to put an x-pen around the tree.
This year we went for a five mile walk in the snow Christmas morning. There have been several days where we’ve left A.J. alone in the house with the tree decorated and presents on the floor. He didn’t touch a thing. (Okay, we did put the gifts of chocolate bars and Red Robin seasoning salt up out of reach.)
Last year we made a trip to the emergency vet after A.J. ate a bowl of bread dough. Today we had a quiet day at home.
One odd thing did happen today. Greg took A.J. for a second walk this afternoon while I got dinner started. They happened across a covey of quail and A.J. lunged after them. Greg corrected him, but A.J. lunged again. Greg gave him a harsher correction and told him to Sit. A.J. sat – and let out a big howl.
Greg had never heard him howl. I don’t think I’ve ever heard him howl. James Herriot wrote a story that became a children’s book, “Just One Woof.” Maybe this was A.J.’s one howl. And I missed it. (I’m glad I missed the lunging though, that was a bad boy.)
Overall, a much calmer, quieter, and more relaxed Christmas than last year. Yay, A.J.!