The most intent beggar

She is deeply in love with Jonathan. And ginger cats. #germanshepherd #pyrrhagram
How can you say no to those eyes?

Food. It’s a powerful motivator.

My friend Jonathan spent the weekend with us, and Pyrrha spent her time alternately nervous around him (if he tried to approach her) OR plaintively begging from him (because he plied her with a steady stream of Trader Joe’s ginger cats). As you can see, she was really working her adorable angles with him.

This just brought to mind another observation about shy dogs, or at least, our shy dog: Pyrrha would prefer that new people don’t try to interact with her at all. But if these aforementioned new people happen to be willing to slip her food? She won’t leave them alone!

Does your dog’s behavior change when food is present?

A weekend with Ava

Yes?
This is Ava. She is darling. Source: Me

This weekend, I had a mini college reunion with friends in Virginia Beach. I went to visit my dear friend Catherine and we were joined by Jonathan. Catherine has a one-year old lab/German shepherd* mix named Ava. (*I posit she’s got GSD in her somewhere. She looks mostly lab, but look at those ears! Adolescent GSD if I ever saw one.) Catherine and her husband, Russ, adopted Ava from a shelter in Pensacola, Florida, when Ava was 7 weeks old.

As you can see, Catherine and Ava are very devoted to one another.

Cuddles
Catherine and Ava. Source: Me

Russ is in the Navy and is frequently deployed, so Catherine and “Ava-rice” are constant companions in their apartment (aka Balboa Towers) in downtown Virginia Beach. This pair makes having a big dog in a high-rise apartment look like a piece of cake. I know it’s not, but they manage it well. On Sunday morning, we took a leisurely and enjoyable walk around town with Ava and saw many other dogs and their people.

Ava's perch
Watching over the city. Source: Me

Catherine, Ava, and I all shared a (seemingly small) double bed over the weekend. I think this was the first time I had shared a bed with a dog for a night and let me tell you: It is no easy task. They are reluctant to yield their ground. Ava, however, was very responsive to Catherine’s requests to move up, roll over, turn to the side. To my surprise, I actually slept very soundly. And Ava looked like she did, too.

She’s an extremely affectionate dog. She wants to be sitting in your lap, licking your face, or leaning against your knees all the time. Most people would find this annoying, but it was delightful to me. She does jump and beg for table food constantly, but apart from that, she seems pretty near perfect. (I also feel like Ava and Bo would be best friends.) I had a great time with her and wished we could have taken her with us everywhere.

As is expected by now, I left the weekend with my longing for a dog ratcheted up to another level.