Category Archives: Schatzi

Chloë Reviews Her Positions

Schatzi and Chloë tussle over stock options.

With spring comes my annual strategy session with my personal financial advisor and sometime hotelier, Caroline. As a senior dog well-versed in the intricacies of investing, I’ve been trying to impart some of my seasoned understanding to Caroline’s Schatzi, so I encouraged the young Schatz to tag along with Caroline that morning and attend my session. Mike and Heather were allowed to come, too, but just for backup and in case I needed to take notes.

Naptime on Wall Street.

While Caroline and her associate Rory discussed my investment positions and streamed impressive graphs and tables onto a large TV on the wall, Schatzi and I tussled, sniffed each other’s butts and eventually retired to opposite ends of the conference table for a well-earned nap. And why not? Obviously, no snacks would be falling on the floor during this session. I’ll have to remember to return for the next open house with catered hors d’oeuvres.

When everyone finally got up to leave, Caroline transferred her computer to the floor, so Schatzi and I could take a closer look at the changes and projections for my portfolio in the short- and long-term. Fortunately, I find this financial stuff easier to understand than the NFL salary cap.

Schatzi and Chloë gain valuable financial insight.

It was a productive meeting. Everything Caroline went over reinforced the analysis I had previously imparted to Schatzi: Don’t worry, stay the course. I certainly realize no one is immune from rampant inflation. Believe me, when every visit to the vet costs more than it used to, and a box of  Vita Bones  at Fred Meyer zooms from $2.39 to $4.29, I hear about it!

I resist panicking, however. I advised Schatzi to adhere to one of Warren Buffett’s favorite theories: “Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful.” Schatzi seemed to grasp the concept.

Chloë Finds a New Neighborhood Landmark

Resting before dinner.

It has been a cold and rainy spring. Flannel sheets still adorn Mike and Heather’s bed, and I have been taking full advantage of that warmth when I burrow in next to Heather every morning while Mike exercises. I am definitely getting the better of that deal.

My dachshund pal  Schatzi was over here a lot, since her kitchen is being renovated. Schatzi can’t be trusted over there because she tried to rip down plastic sheathing that the contractor had installed. This week Schatzi and Caroline moved into an Air B’n’B in Magnolia while the kitchen’s being finished. Schatzi gets her own built-in feeding station in the remodel. I can’t wait to try it out!

Fetching at the water tower.

Heather, Mike and I have been doing a lot of walking around the neighborhood instead of into the park. That way I can take advantage of lying prone in all the lush lawns, and Mike and Heather can admire the landscaping and the bountiful rhododendrons blooming everywhere. On some days we wind up by the water tower, usually another favorite location for ball-throwing and retrieving. but I wasn’t too interested in throwing the ball there recently; too many distractions.

Free treats? Sign me up!

Anyway, one day on our way home, we passed something much more interesting than my ball: A homeowner had installed one of those Free Library kiosks near his sidewalk, except instead of books this station dispensed free dog biscuits. I marked the spot in my mental GPS,  so I can return frequently.

Aunts Susie and Debby are coming this week, our first overnight guests since the last time Juneau George and Debbie stayed here pre-pandemic. It will be good to have family around again, although I’ll have to train them about where the downstairs treats are kept. I hope my training methods are still as sharp after the long layoff.

Chloë Trades Vacations

Chloë and Schatzi ready to walk.

I am strongly pack-oriented. Whenever my pack is not all together, preferably in the same room, I am on edge. So in that respect, the pandemic has been good for me, since until recently my pack had not missed a single night together since early March 2019. That’s a long time. even for me. When on a Sunday morning, Heather and Mike hustled me and all my gear into the car and deposited me at Schatzi‘s house, I was ready for a vacation.

Pre-dinner snooze in the library.

Just the week before, my pal Schatzi spent several days at our house. I therefore deduced that our respective owners have finally shed their travel fears and are sticking their toes in warmer waters, leaving us behind. For me, having Schatzi around is like a vacation, since she’s always the one drawing Heather’s scolding while I get a temporary free pass. Schatzi celebrated her third birthday while she was with us, with Caroline leaving her special birthday presents but no cake or burgers. Schatzi can still get in my face more than I would like her to, but at least she’s smart enough to back off when I tell her.

Scattering of Schatzi’s toys.

As soon as I got on Schatzi’s turf, I searched for and recovered the squeaky bone toy from her birthday gift, which I had commandeered and since missed every second since she took it home with her (the nerve!). But I didn’t stop there, eventually scattering and discarding most of Schatzi’s largely ignored menagerie all over Caroline’s living room. That was fun!

Fetch in back yard.

During my stay we also played ball in Schatzi’s fenced-in back yard. That is, Caroline threw the ball, I chased the ball, and Schatzi chased me. Schatzi has yet to comprehend the “pick up the ball and bring it back” part of the game. But I did enjoy the freedom of a fenced yard and a lawn. We have neither at our house.

Slumber party at Schatzi’s house.

While long overdue, my vacation was low-key. Mostly I laid around with Schatzi, trading beds every once in a while, going out for walks together and sometimes with Marley from across the street, but mostly sleeping and waiting for Mike and Heather to get back from wherever they went (they claimed to have sent me a postcard, but if they did, it arrived at Schatzi’s house after I came home). Rather than feel ignored, however, I went absolutely nuts, with at least 10 minutes of jumping and squealing, when they walked through the door. My pack was back.

Chloë Takes a Field Trip

Tiring day for Schatzi.

My pal Schatzi stayed with us last weekend, and this time was much more fun than the last. That’s when I was on “bed rest,” and Schatzi had to pretty much leave me alone. Now that I’m fully recovered (and as demanding as ever), this time we were allowed to tussle. So we did, at least until I growled to let her know when I had enough. Schatzi  has calmed down a little, but she’s still a bit more energetic than my recently recovered bones allow. She gets the message.

A weekend with Heather is good training for Schatzi.  (“Tully Obedience Camp” is what Schatzi’s owner Caroline calls it.)  Saturday was a big day for her. In the morning, my pal Penny and her pack came over to watch a Syracuse football game, which usually makes all the people grumpy. We girls just hung out on the couch, chatted and hoped some food would fall on the floor.

Schatzi, Chloë and Penny root on the Orange.

Reining in the girls on a misty afternoon.

Mercifully, the football game ended early in the day. After Penny left, Heather hustled Schatzi and me into the back seat of her car, and we drove all the way out to the Preston-Snoqualmie Trail on what turnd out to be a rain-free but misty afternoon. This being Schatzi’s first visit to these rural environs, we walked all the way from the Lake Alice Road parking lot to the north end of the trail, 1.8 miles each way. Schatzi admitted this was definitely the farthest she had ever walked in one day in her life, but she did OK. I didn’t have to worry about her pouncing on me when we got home, though. She was plum tuckered out.

Trail dogs.

On the drive home, Mike and Heather stopped briefly at my country “getaway” for instruction on some recently installed kitchen appliances. We will be returning here for a longer stay in the near future, but on this rapidly darkening afternoon Schatzi and I stayed in the car, swapping beds in the back seat and curling up for the ride back to Seattle. We both slept well that night.

Chloë Goes on “Bed Rest”

Therapeutic massage.

Turned out all that slow walking I was doing the past couple of months might have been more than my natural dachshund stubbornness. Heather and Mike increasingly observed my back legs shaking when I was standing still, and sometimes limping during and after a rousing game of fetch. When Schatzi stayed at my house back in August, my discomfort boiled over. I tried to ignore her, but I had to nip at her a few times to let her know in no uncertain terms there would be no unbridled wrassling on this particular visit. I needed to take it easy.

Bed rest.

Heather called the veterinary  about an examination, but since my personal physician, Dr. Aimee Kimmel, was not available until the middle of September, Heather put me on “bed rest” for a five days. That meant no hijinks with Schatzi, no chasing my ball, no knocking Wiffie under the furniture, no tug of war with Lamby, no jumping in or out of my camp chair, no going downstairs and, most importantly, no long walks. Every day, just a few brief excursions outside for a pee and a 10-minute (tops) afternoon stroll just to get some fresh air and take care of business. When I finally saw Dr. Kimmel, she endorsed Heather’s prescription and extended it for another month. If this were baseball, that’s like being moved from the 10-day to 60-day IL (injured list). That’s a long time.

Rest in another bed.

Despite my relative lack of activity, so far my treatment hasn’t included special hospital rations – that is, portion reduction in my meals or snacks. Heather has been holding steady in that department, thankfully, although I will approach my next weigh-in at the vet with some trepidation. Other aspects of the plan aren’t so bad. For instance, since I’m not allowed to go downstairs, Heather moved my downstairs crate into the living room, so I can still get inside it for my morning biscuit. I immediately liked running up and down the short ramp they put over the steps by the front door. And, while I have missed the long walks and especially playing fetch, I do have to admit that these short afternoon walks are surprisingly to my liking. Every day, I have been prancing along enthusiastically, eliciting many smiles and comments on my gait from admiring passersby, and more-than-happy to be getting home for dinner that much quicker.

Wiffie under-furniture baffles in storage.

Rest and medication seem to be working, too. Heather noted just yesterday that I am showing more energy and more power in my stride. Sometimes I forget that I’m supposed to be taking it easy, and I jump out of a chair to the floor without help or coax Mike into having a brief tug  of war with me and Lamby. Heather has kept a watchful eye on me, and she scolds us before things can get out of hand, shutting me down but deflecting the responsibility: “No throwing!” she yells. “Dr. Kimmel says NO!” Doctor’s orders! End of story.

Chloë Scores Market Savvy

Heat exhaustion.

After the heat dome lifted, I spent some more time with Schatzi. She was a lot more alert on those occasions than she was the last time.

One day we met at her downtown Magnolia office. Mike and Heather were there to discuss financial stuff with Schatzi’s owner Caroline, who is also of course my own personal financial advisor. When Caroline talks, absolutely nobody listens to what E. F. Hutton has to say.

Nose for news.

When I found out Schatzi was going to be at this meeting, I figured she was there for the air conditioning. But as I wandered around the premises, checking every office and conference room for random potato chips or crackers the cleaning staff may have missed, it dawned on me that Schatzi might actually be getting the inside scoop on Wall Street from discussions she overheard in client meetings. Suddenly, I was concerned that her portfolio might outperform my own.

Searching under the mattress for stock tips.

While our people were yakking at the table above us, I investigated Schatzi’s office bed for tips, to no avail. But a couple of days later I was lucky enough to have Schatzi stay with us for a whole weekend. That’s when I was able to delve deeply into her market perspective. Not surprisingly, Schatzi is energetic and aggressive, likely to follow any scent and reluctant to let go. At age 2, she can afford to have that long-term outlook. At 11,  my investment horizon is shorter.

Schatzi and I danced around that issue one afternoon during her visit. Being a gracious host, I rolled over and let her win.

Face off.

Take down.

Pinned.

While Schatzi visited, whenever we went for walks in the park, Heather took Schatzi’s leash and Mike took mine, because Schatzi is a load to handle. It was the first time Mike had led me on a walk since we took care of  two dogs at the Getaway in April. And what do you know, I liked it! After two days of Mike, I deduced that he is not nearly as tough on me as Heather is. What can I do to bring him back?

 

Chloë Beats the Heat

Looking for relief.

As you probably heard, we had a heat wave here in Seattle, over 100 degrees for three days in a row. Unprecedented heat! We have no air conditioning, so during the day we retreated downstairs. With the windows closed, the shades pulled down and a fan blowing, it was much cooler than upstairs, where the living room thermostat read 98. We took our late afternoon walks early in the morning, and in the evening walked to the park’s breeziest bench and sat in the shade for a while.

How hot was it? When Schatzi came over for a visit, she didn’t even think about getting in my face and goading me into wrestling with her. The two of us just staid still and laid low all day long, and Heather put ice cubes in our water. That was about it. I’d really like it if this were the only heat wave I’ll have to face this summer, but readily admit this is wishful thinking.

Letting sleeping dogs lie.

Chloë Stands Her Ground

Schatzi searches faux takeout container for faux dumplings.

She was back. Schatzi, that is. And in the weeks since she’d been here (but who’s counting?), she hadn’t aged a bit! She was still  a whirling dervish of energy, barking, jumping on the furniture, taking over my bed and my chair. and getting in my face every second that she wasn’t sleeping.  In classic “the other dog’s toys are much better than mine” mode, almost all of my toys came out of their corner bins and onto the living room floor. Some had not been out of their bin in years.

Most of the time, I just let Schatzi do her thing. Whenever I had enough, I gave her a growl or a lip curl, or just stared her down. She would always back away, thank goodness.

 

Side by side by side.

Somewhere along the line, however, I had to put my paw down. Schatzi is the ultimate affection hound, demanding constant attention, but there was no way I was going to let her get more affection from Heather and Mike than I got.  I’ll allow her takeover of my dog bed and my camp chair, but I’m not budging from my space in bed between Mike’s legs on a fleece blanket. I reluctantly let Schatzi in the bed at all (I turned my nose away),  but she was not getting my personal favorite spot. And when we were sitting in front of the TV in the living room, I would let Schatzi have my usual camp chair, as long as I  got the chair closest to Heather, even if I had to crawl over a TV table to get there. Not on my watch, girlfriend.

Waiting for Heather.inside the front door.

While I was able to maintain my position in the pecking order during Schatzi’s visit, I’m not totally sure that she got the message. Not from the way she followed Heather around from room to room and whined whenever Heather went outside  without her to work in  the garden or talk to the neighbor kids. Those kids were all crazy about Schatzi, until she barked at them or pulled them along when they were trying to manage her when Heather let them hold her leash on a walk around the neighborhood. That was OK, though. Compared to Schatzi, I was easy to handle,  so the kids liked walking me, and they finally started to appreciate me a little. I got more comfortable with them as well.

Chloë with Schatzi’s toy.

Having Schatzi around was fun (and she even brought a scary Halloween tug toy that I liked a lot), but I needed a good rest after she left. Asserting yourself as the alpha dog is tiring when it’s another dog you have to dominate instead of just the usual humans.

The afternoon Schatzi left was the first one without Daylight Saving Time. That means taking an earlier afternoon walk every day, and as a result having time to get in an extended nap before dinner. I’m looking forward to sinking back into my restful winter routine.

Guard dogs relax in each other’s beds.

 

Chloë Earns High Marks

Resting in cemetery.

It had been such a quiet summer. No traveling across the country. No long Sunday walks or playing fetch with my pal Charlie. No ear infections or other unwanted trips to the vet. Just one chance visit with my brothers Frank and Stanley, a bit less food on my plate (remember, I’m on a diet) and lots of rest.

Then Schatzi arrived.

Schatzi guards front yard.

I’ve always liked Schatzi, the pride and joy of Caroline, my personal financial adviser. And all the wrestling and running around Schatzi and I do is fun. For a while. Until it’s not.

Schatzi, only a few months past her first birthday, has yet to receive that memo. The most common refrain  of the week she stayed with us was, “Schatzi! Leave her alone!” The second most frequent was, “You’re a real trooper, Chloë,” because I was being so patient with Schatzi’s intrusions, and never attempted to rip that ever-twitching nose off her pointy little face. Let’s always remember who’s top dog around here.

Dog day afternoon.

I did observe Schatzi’s behavior toward ne improved a bit as the week wore on. Maybe some of Heather’s instruction seeped in, but more likely she got the message very time I growled or barked at her and flashed my teeth. By the time she left, we were blissfully napping together again. And in the meantime, I got high marks from Heather, a gift of a tug toy margarita. plus a few of Schatzi’s treats and a taste of the juice from her canned sardines (I’ll have Mike look into this).

Schatzi in cemetery.

Schatzi and I also had some good walks in the park, a visit to the military cemetery for some ball throwing and wrestling, and also some interesting strolls around the neighborhood. On one walk with Heather, for instance, we passed a dead rat, chatted with my friends (and our house-cleaners extraordinaire) Jeré and Channon, and found a bushy gray cat hiding under a car—all on just one lap around the block! Schatzi even ran into people who live further south on our street who recognized her when we walked by. What a celebrity.

 

When Caroline picked up Schatzi, she came inside, knelt on the living room floor and took off her mask so we could greet her properly. I jumped up to bite Caroline’s nose, but Schatzi’s leap took her a good foot higher. Schatzi hasn’t shown much interest in fetching a ball, but she seems like a natural for agility, field trials and steeplechase. If anyone asks me, I’ll recommend any activity that directs her attention and excess energy away from me.

 

Schatzi attacks Mike’s stretch.

Everything considered, Schatzi’s visit was a lot of fun, and I’ll welcome her back anytime. After all, the older she gets, the easier it should be. Right now, however, I need a nap.

 

 

Chloë Plays the Gracious Host

Schatzi stayed with us for two nights and three days.  I enjoyed engaging with Schatzi for a while, and she’s been developing sparring skills that made her a challenging foe.

But let’s face it, I’m 10 years old and she’s still a puppy, and she’s as reckless and impulsive as the maskless throngs on the beach in Florida. She hasn’t learned when to quit.

Schatzi charges: En garde!.

Office workers.

Luckily, Heather cast a careful eye on things, and was ever-mindful of keeping Schatzi at bay whenever I was being harassed unmercifully. When Schatzi finally gave in to her tiredness for brief periods, we did share some quieter moments. In the afternoons, we went downstairs to where Heather was working on her computer, and, even though it was July, we turned on the fireplace. Heavenly.

Three on a mattress.

I did exhibit some signs of jealousy when Schatzi cuddled up to Heather once too often, but I also tried to integrate the puppy into my pack. On Saturday morning, I even let Schatzi get into bed with me and Mike while he read the paper. I guess there was enough room for both of us. And despite the inconveniences, there are two big positives to having Schatzi visit. First, whenever Heather is yelling “No!” or scolding a dog, it isn’t me. Two, on the other hand,  is that I’ve never been told more often what a good girl I am for putting up with Schatzi’s constant in-your-face barrage.

Schatzi is still learning, of course, and I’m sure she’ll settle down by the time she’s oh, four or five. Later this summer, she’s coming to stay with us for a whole week, so I will have another opportunity to teach her a few life skills, such as the dachshund flop. I’m going to rest up for it.