Saturday, December 24, 2011

Captain of Christmas Present!

I'm slightly embarrassed by how much I love this picture. But it's worth it ;-)

Merry Christmas- or rather, Happy Holidays to everyone! Just a few more Captain Christmas photos before we ring in the new year....

This year, has Captain been...                                   

Definitely nice!

I have no idea what's going on, but I know there's treats in that sparkly green thing.

I like holiday napping best.

 Happy Holidays to you and yours from Captain!

(PS- For more holiday fun, see: Captain of Christmas Past, and Captain of Christmas Future).

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Captain of Christmas Future?!

Time for the next ghost of Captain Christmas...

King Captain is Christmas Future! (?!)

Ok, maybe not. Maybe I went a little nuts dressing up my dog. My husband walked by as I was taking these pictures and just shook his head.

But, since I have them, here are a few more King Captain pictures:
I CAN NOT believe you are doing this to me.

Seriously, I'm not even going to look at you. This is ridiculous. You realize I'm a BOY, right?! And, you know, canine?

Ok, something tells me Captain of Christmases future will look more like this:

And I'm totally ok with that ;-)

I honestly never thought I would be one of those people that dressed up my dog. Sigh. Oh well. I gave him a bunch of treats afterwords, so I don't think he was too traumatized!

Stay tuned for the best Captain Christmas of all!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Captain of Christmas Past

Time to get in the holiday spirit! Captain does this by staring at me as I bake cookies and pumpkin bread, playing squeaky ball in the house (don't tell!), cuddling on the couch with some warm blankets & whatever human is around while watching Scrooged and the Muppet Christmas Carol, and checking out some photos of Christmases past!

And what's that? The ghost of Captain past?!
Nope! That's Captain at about 5 months, Christmas 2008 -we'd gone to the park after it had rained, so we ended up very dirty! Because instead of snow in San Francisco during the winter, we get rain. Luckily, Captain hadn't heard yet that Vizslas melt in the rain ;-)

And here's one more photo of Captain past... in his old favorite spot, in front of the heater:

You will be visited by TWO MORE ghosts of Captain Christmas! ;-)
(OK, clearly, I've mentally checked out for the week and am already dreaming of the holiday break...)

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Project Dog Book!

Last weekend we went to the Project Dog book launch party, and it was a blast! If you didn't see my last post on it, Project Dog is a photography book featuring Bay Area purebred and rescue dogs of all AKC breeds.

The launch party was at Wag hotels, in their spacious new doggie play area, complete with a doggie runway, and treats for 4 and 2 legged guests alike ;-)

I LOVED this dog, Odinn, a beautiful Ibizian Hound:

And this Weim got all dressed up for the occasion! 

We were pretty psyched to have Captain featured as the purebred Vizsla in the book. I think his picture came out great:

This is the full Vizsla page, also featuring Jake the rescue Vizsla:

Each page has a little write-up about the dog, the breed, and the dog's arrival. The rescue dogs in particular have really heartwarming- and sometimes sad- stories, but it is so good to know they are all in good homes with loving parents now!! The rescue organizations for Vizslas listed in the book include the Vizsla Club of Northern California Rescue and the Vizsla Rescue Haven. Definitely worth checking into if you have extra room in your house for another wonderful wiggler! And even if you don't, both organizations take donations. 'Tis the season for giving!
Do you think I look good in my picture? I was going for 'Blue Steel.'

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Vizsla Things 3: Lap Dogs

When Captain was a puppy, he used to come over to my desk while I was working, place a paw on my leg... and then another paw.... and heave himself up. The thing is... he still does this sometimes, despite weighing around 65 pounds (yes, he's a big boy.) It's never ceased to amuse us or our friends.

Vizslas may not be small dogs, but they think they are!

The Hungarian Vizsla: consummate lap dog ;-)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

I deserve a plate of turkey

Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Captain was thankful for turkey leftovers, me being clumsy and dropping food in the kitchen, and the smell of good food.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Vizsla Things 2: Jumpin' Jiminy!

Moving on to more unofficial characteristics of Vizslas, the next "Vizsla Thing" is jumping! These pups are experts at it!

Jumpin Jiminy!

This video (found on YouTube) is actually really similar to what Captain does when a squirrel is up a tree:

At one point I also had the link to an amazing video of a Vizsla jumping up onto her owner's neck/back, but I can't seem to find that one anymore! She was like a little billy goat. I'll post it if I can find it. In the meantime, enjoy your jumpin' jellybeans ;-)

Monday, November 14, 2011

Vizsla Things 1: Pointing

I'm kicking off a series of posts about just what exactly that Vizsla Thing is with probably one of the most obvious Vizsla things....

Pointing and hunting- what Vizslas were bred for, after all!

Here is a great pointing video from Red Girls in Scotland:

Any guesses on other Vizsla Things? More are coming!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Fellow V-Blog feature

I must admit, I don't have a ton of Vizsla blogs I'm following at the moment- not for lack of lovin' 'em, that's for sure - I just haven't spent much time surfing for them (and, I might get far too distracted from work! But if you want to share your blog, feel free to leave a comment.  I'm all for sharing & finding more great blogs.)

If you are looking for a complete list of Vizsla blogs, Miss Laila and Amanda from Click the Good News have both done amazing jobs of listing all of them (and have awesome blogs of their own!)

But I had to instantly share this one I found- the pictures made me almost squeal instantly.
If you haven't already, check out Urban Bodi.

This picture in particular just killllllled me:

 Photo source: Urban Bodi

There are plenty of other pics on the site I recommend checking out too! Ridiculously good-looking dogs. Captain is drooling over this pretty pup. We also loved the sweater pics from this post.  Incidentally, speaking of doggie clothing, Captain has outgrown his rain jacket. Yup, my skinny little boy has finally gained some girth (I couldn't help laughing a little- the velco straps pop apart as he walks...!). Welcome to the adult years! Don't worry though, we won't get pudgey ;-)

Other blogs Captain and I stop by include:
  • Miss Laila- this beautiful Vizsla in Baltimore seems to be absent recently, but is always a source of entertainment!
  • Red Bird dog- for useful & interesting breed info & more California adventures
  • Click.The Good News - not an exclusively Vizsla blog, but amazing photography.
For the full V blog lists, see:
This link
This one (with an awesome Vizsla photo too!)

PS- I hope the Urban Bodi blogger doesn't mind my borrowing the pic- I couldn't find any photo sharing info on the site.  (But of course I will take down any pictures others don't want to share).

As an FYI, I am happy to share my photos if they are referenced as I have done above, and linked back to my blog.

And PPS- Still fooling around with my blog background & style.... tweaking as I go. Still not completely satisfied, so this may take a little more work and time...

Happy blog searching!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Calling all pumpkins

This photo from wilmthys on Flickr just makes me want to pick this little pumpkin up and cuddle him!

Yup, it's that time of year when I start referring to Vizslas as pumpkins. (Or pumpkin pie - like this one of Captain!) I actually just made a batch of pumpkin muffins, which Captain thinks are for him only. Captain looooooves pumpkin.... I might have dropped a crumb or two on purpose ;-)

PS- Let me know what you think of the new template. I want a more "professional" look (which is hard in Blogger... I wish I'd started in Wordpress...) but I think simpler is better when one has limited time! But maybe it's too dark? I may go back to blue at some point...

Monday, October 31, 2011

Vizsla facts

A vet friend left a book about Hungarian dogs on my desk at work, so I of course took a look at the Vizsla section.
Here's some information on the breed, for those interested (from Hungarian Dog Breeds, Sarkanay & Ocsag, 2nd edition, 1986).

"Vizslas are not only highly valued as gun dogs, but also, because of their beauty, 
clean coats, and pleasant temperament, they are good dogs to have in the house.  
They are grateful, loyal animals that heap affection 
on their master and bring joy to their surroundings."

Vizslas are noted as an indigenous Hungarian breed, though the breed origin may have been an eastern hound that came with Hungarians from Asia. According to the book, Vizslas- or at least some version of similar hunting dogs- were noted in Hungarian writings as early as the 11-14th Century. Scent hounds used for falconry also popped up in writings during the 15-16th Century. It seems that during the Turkish occupation of Hungary, these hunting dogs were crossed with yellow Turkish quail-hunting dogs. Over the course of the 18th-19th Century (the book seems to forget about the 17th Century-?), the breed developed and was crossed with English pointers, German short-haired pointers, and blood hounds, resulting ultimately in the present-day Vizsla. Apparently, the Vizsla's ability to point comes from the indigenous Pannonian hound, and their color from the Turkish yellow (?) quail hound.

My husband says the book seems to have left out that Vizslas are mooches (as we sit here on the couch and Captain gives us the Jedi stare for more food).

I have read elsewhere that Vizslas are related to Weimaramers, but that appears not to be the case; at least not directly. Weimaramers originate from Germany; however, both Weims and V's do have bloodhounds and pointers in their ancestry line. 

In any case, I thought I'd share! Feel free to leave more breed facts in the comments. I'm also planning some posts on what exactly that Vizsla thing is... coming soon to a blog near you :-)

And Happy Halloween! 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Dogtoberfest 2011- and BACONCAKE!

It's that time of year again... Halloween around the corner, Oktoberfest celebrations, doggie Halloween parties...
but what trumps them all?  

Dogtoberfest! This was our second Dogtoberfest, but it was actually either the 4th or 5th ever.
Every year (for at least the past 4 years, anyway), the dog owners in our
neighborhood get together for a picnic/barbecue and doggie get-together in our local park. 

We were blessed with very warm weather (maybe a little too warm for those of us
that have gotten used to temperatures never straying from the 55-65 degree range!),
sun, and plenty of neighborhood dogs & their owners out to enjoy the day.

Arguably the biggest draw to Dogtoberfest? The bacon cake!
Every year a fabulous dog-owning mom whips one up fresh for
the dogs, who absolutely love it.
This year's cake:

          Shaped like a cat, so the dogs can finally have their cake and eat it too ;-)

          It's a very orderly process, making sure the bacon cake is evenly distributed
and every dog gets his/her piece.

Time to line up!

Waiting.... waiting.....

At last, the dogs' moment of bacon cake bliss arrived ;-)

          Captain loves the bacon cake...

 But it was gone in 60 seconds. He quickly moved on to looking for leftovers:

Crumbs? Did somebody say crumbs?
Ah-ha! I knew there was more. I'll take some to go, please!
Click if you want to see last year's Dogtoberfest!
Another Dogtoberfest success!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Lounge Hound

Somebody around here knows how to pose for the camera...

(By the way, you might have noticed the "Vizsla pictures" label and thought that was a little redundant, given that, well, all my posts have Vizsla pictures. I'm including that label on the posts with pics from Flickr's Vizsla Love, and, more recently, ones of my own that I think might be worthy of being in that group of favorites!)

Thursday, October 13, 2011


I don't usually put up posts with just words, but I figured other Vizsla owners would get a kick out of this little story:
Working from home today, while making lunch, all of sudden I hear Captain doing his crazy barking in the office. That loud, deep, "wooo-wooo-wooo" barking. I wonder if maybe he is going off at the ceiling fan, which is a little bit of a mystery to him. When I walk into the office, he's barking and looking suspiciously up at the door/mirror area. I follow his gaze, thinking maybe it's a weird bug or shadow, to.... my scarves. Yep. That scary cashmere pashmina is DEFINITELY an intruder. Even though it's been hanging on my scarf rack for the past year and a half. He kept barking at it until my husband (also working from home) put it on the ground to let him sniff it. Some more barking, and then, he grabs it in his mouth and gives it a good shake, while I shriek, "NO! That's cashmere!" So he drops it, does the Vizsla "I'm so sorry I'm guilty" look, but gives it one last sniff as if to say he's told it who's boss, and walks away. Sigh. Ohmylittlevizsla.

On a related note, Captain has also been convinced that alpaca sweaters are the devil. It took a while, but I finally convinced him that the small alpaca tapestry in our kitchen is not actually a scary animal. It's amazing and funny all in one, what they can smell, and what they think of those smells!

Endless laughter, having a Vizsla around ;-)

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Topsy turvy

It kills me when he does this.
                               Although, looking at that upside-down picture makes me feel a little funny.
                               This is the right-side up view:

I can't handle the cuteness. This leads to what we call "smother mother" behavior in our house - hugs and cuddles galore from Mommy ;-)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

One of my favorite Vizsla videos...

Reading the title, you might think this is going to be some wonderful video of a beautiful Vizsla running through open fields, or on perfect point.
Nope. It's this:

Gets me every time. I love it.

(And yes, I've posted it before. But I figured it deserved it's own spotlight, with the new 'funny' tag too- I've been updating the labels on the blog a bit!)

My other favorite V vid is, of course, of Captain as a puppy: here. I have to admit, my husband and I still sing "little baby puppies, there they are" every now and then (just watch the video) ;-)

Monday, October 3, 2011

Your kiss for the day

You can see why I *sometimes* get distracted when I'm working from home, with a face like this by my lap.

Somewhere along the way I've become a "dog person." We had a fairly unfriendly cat growing up, but for a while I thought I was a "cat person." But there's just something about dogs- their unique personalities, their loyalty, their excitement when you come home. While I still don't want to be licked, and I still can't stand slobber, or crazy shedding furriness (ok, maybe I'm just a "Vizsla person"), I love everything about Captain- even, yes, how he smells. You know, that dog smell. Recently we had a friend over (a self-proclaimed cat person), and when he commented "How do people stand it? Dogs smell!" I couldn't help but think to myself... I like the way he smells. I don't mean dirty wet dog smell; but it reminds me of growing up, when I used to spend days by the lake, wrapped in a towel with our family friend's black lab Rosie; or on the Cape with my grandfather's black lab Molly, who always pushed herself between my legs so I'd scratch her butt, even when I was too little for my toes to touch the ground when she tried to go through; or with our neighbor's Irish Setter Kerry, who would without fail come running over to our back deck to whine for food every summer night we ate outside. When they say dogs are man's best friend, they aren't kidding; these dogs bring back such strong, happy memories for me. Despite their shorter lifespan (I can't think about that!), dogs make such impacts on our lives. Captain is so much more than a pet for us, and while they say ("they" say a lot ;-) )  not to anthropomorphize your dog, I can't help but think of him as my first baby. Well, that's your sentimentalism for the day...Now go hug your dog ;-)

And ps- we give Captain a bath about every 2 weeks, so if anyone's thinking I've got a dirty, smelly dog, I don't ;-)

Friday, September 30, 2011

Stanislaus National Forest

We're finishing up the Yosemite weekend trip posts (I really stretched that out, huh?) with Stanislaus National Forest. As I might have mentioned, while Yosemite is very strict about pets, has plenty of dog-restricted areas, and doesn't have any off-leash spots, Stanislaus Forest to the North stands in stark contrast to all those rules. Three cheers for off-leash roaming, wild forests, lakes, and trails-a-plenty!

Elevation: 9,628 ft!

We didn't really have a plan, other than to follow the road and enjoy the day.

Not a bad road to follow, I might add. We were traveling along highway 108, which is to the North of the Tioga pass/highway 120 road we came in on a few days earlier, through Yosemite. It makes for a quite a driving loop! There were plenty of spots to pull off, for a little rock climbing, hiking, or even swimming.

We stopped at pretty much every spot that caught my interest... so we were stopping a lot.
Captain wasn't too happy about this.

Captain enjoyed exploring, although he didn't follow my lead when I took a dip to cool off (he's not much for swimming).

We also stopped in at Pinecrest Lake- a pretty spot, but one of the few places in the forest that is specified as on-leash. But they do have a coffee shop and little store that might come in handy after all that driving! For more information and links, check my guest post on Fido Factor (towards the end of the post, under Stanislaus).

That's all, folks! What a weekend trip! I highly recommend checking out this part of the country- beautiful, and fun for Vizslas too ;-)
Back on the road home