Climb Every Mountain

Last night, Marvin Gardensalad and I went to a lecture about Mt. Everest. That lecturer told a lot of tall tales. BAH!

Did you know that the people who actually live under Mt. Everest have a whole different name for it, and then when the British people decided to start rushing over there and climbing the thing, they just named it "Everest" after some British guy? Doesn't that make you mad? I think we should all start referring to it by its actual name given to it by its native people, and this argument would be a lot more powerful if I could remember what the name of it is. Something foreign-sounding.

In the meantime, Tahlula, — which is what we are now calling the dog, because Marvin hated the name Lulabelle and I did kind of just come home with a dog and all — spent her first hour in her new crate. She and I drove to MONroe together yesterday to go to PetSmart, and turns out? She is kind of afraid of automatic doors such as the kind found at PetSmart. Also? She is afraid of Cocker Spaniels, mail trucks and construction equipment. She is going to have to man up, for heaven's sake.

Anyway, we put her in that crate. You guys. You'd have thought we were KILLING her.

Then, at night? We put her in there again. Do you have any idea how many noises of sadness a puppy can make? There is the ar-ar-ar-ar-ar whine where she sounds like a dolphin. There is the mmmmmmmmmmm whine where she sounds like brakes. Then there is the oh-so-easy-to-sleep-during rrowwwwwwwww! howl.

I am looking forward to the part where you all say she will come to like that crate.

At any rate, in case you haven't noticed, I hope you know, that it is the end of the month. It is a leap day. Are ya leaping? My Aunt Kathy is flying today, and she said she keeps thinking that if she dies in a plane crash, her kids won't be able to think, "It was a year ago today mom died in the plane crash" because February 29th won't happen next year.

It's fine, really. My whole family thinks this way. Recently I played with a five-year-old member of our family? And she wanted to play funeral. We are practically the Addams Family.

My morbid roots aside, it is the end of the month, and I must adopt a new healthy thing to do for March. Remember? How I was gonna add something new each month? So, here we go. For March, I will try meditation every day. I am thinking I will try to do it in the evening, when Marvin gets home, because meditating with a puppy in the morning sounds fruitful, doesn't it?

I also thought that alternatively, I could meditate in the church before or after work. That church in the middle of the day, with no overhead lights and just the stained-glass windows? So pretty.

Anyway, that's the plan for now. Meditate, rename that mountain, muzzle that dog. Yep.

21 thoughts on “Climb Every Mountain

  1. This will be a tough couple of weeks while everyone acclimates in the GardenSalad household.
    The idea of quiet meditation in the church would be ideal if you can do it without distraction.

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  2. Do you know if they have a puppy preschool nearby that you and Tahlula could attend? I believe that they are essential for first timers like you and Marvin.
    I guess meditating in the church would be good .. just as long as your hummmmmmmms didn’t disturb anyone in there for a quite moment with God.

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  3. Although I’m not a churchgoer, I’m thinking that hte mediation in the church would be the best idea. Not too many distractions, it’s quiet, you are often alone there. It sounds very restful.

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  4. Have fun meditating, just be sure not to ever think about that Gnarles Barkley song, “I think you’re crazy!” when you get into your meditation mode….. You’ll be better off if you don’t think of that “I think you’re crazy!” song during meditation. Definitely. Not during meditation. Crazy.

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  5. Whatever name you use for the puppy, make sure you consistently emphasize one of the syllables so that it will be easier for her to recognize it when you start to train her. Also, maybe try putting a thin blanket over part of the crate so that there aren’t as many visual distractions to keep her awake and whining.

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  6. My dog still howls and whines after 14 years of having to put her in a crate when we leave the house. Sorry. Just lettin’ ya’ know…
    I still need to send you a picture of Roxy! I took a couple just for you!

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  7. The crate thing – I waited until the dogs were around 2 years old to crate train which is not advisable (it takes longer when they’re older, should’ve done it at the puppy stage). They were fine without crates aside from the fact that Nikki would wake me up at 2 or 3am every single night just to go outside and fart around (guised as having to pee), so I said, that’s it! I don’t care what it takes, it’s crate time.
    I did it very gradually. I fed them in their crates to start (associating “good food” with “crate”) – put the bowl in there (gradually moving it back further each day). Once they were all the way inside eating, I would close to crate door while they ate, then make them stay a little bit in there after food. Always treats when they went in too. Eventually, they were totally cool with their crates. But it took a few weeks. I did it when my husband was away in Hawaii on a job for 3 weeks so he wouldn’t complain about the nighttime whining and such.

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  8. Meditate, Muzzle, Mountain. Mmmmmmmmmm. Oh, wait. 😉
    I’ve never crated a dog so I have no advice, but I’ll tell you, I wish I would have. So I could sleep without the paws in my back.

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  9. Meditate, Muzzle, Mountain. Mmmmmmmmmm. Oh, wait. 😉
    I’ve never crated a dog so I have no advice, but I’ll tell you, I wish I would have. So I could sleep without the paws in my back.

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  10. We went about crate training all wrong – ie we shoved him in kicking and screaming and latched the gate quickly as though he were rabid. Nonetheless, he loves his crate now and when I get up to go to bed he automatically runs to his crate. We have a cushy dog bed in there for him. The first few nights we put a radio next to the crate playing softly, and it helped. Also, I yelled, “Moxy! SHH!” regularly. ROFL I’m not full of the GOOD dog advice, maybe, but it did work.

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  11. Oh yeah, one other thing – we originally put the crate in the laundry room but eventually moved it into our bedroom. He did much better being with us. Now he sleeps in a bedroom with two of our kids, in his crate.

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  12. My sister and her husband adopted a 2 year old lab and started crating it. It’s kinda like making a baby cry itself back to sleep, heartbreaking but necessary. They to did the food method and even today feed the dog in the crate only – he knows this and doesn’t mind one bit! I think it’s all about balance, periods of stimulation & thinking activities ( piece of food in a Kong) and periods of calm. For the time being, ear plugs and nerves of steel! Can’t wait for more pics!

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  13. Our beloved Luna is crate trained. And she didn’t like it much in the beginning, but since that’s where she eats her food, she now adores it. To a certain extent. But she’s so cuddly that we have her in bed with us most nights. She’s a little miniature schnauzer who doesn’t take up much room and is quite warm on cold nights (unlike me – I’m a popicle disguised as a human being).
    My advice is to not let the sounds get to you, and cover up the crate with a blanket so she feels all nice and cozy.

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  14. One of my “brother’s” – what? One of his headstones? Oh dear. I have six brothers, and I just meant one of them.
    I’m going to quit while I’m behind. Or should I say A behind?

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  15. A lecture on Mt. Everest…..sounds interesting….LOL
    I wish you well on the meditation! It takes a special kind of person with intense focus. LOL I’m willing to freely admit I’d rather do yoga to the Hits of the 90’s or the Oldies of the 80’s CD before trying to “yogitate”. 😉
    On the cratifying? Crate-a-fying? Crating!
    Now is a great time to start training!
    I totally agree with the food in the crate and moving it so she can see you – at least temporarily. As she adjusts to her new surroundings, you’ll know and be able to migrate to the permanent crate spot. 🙂
    Side note: don’t know whether you saw them or not, but they have bowls that actually screw on to the rungs/bars of the crate – this prevents the “hockey puckness” and human retrieval by way of climbing in. 😉
    Also, try a blanket in the crate and/or that sweaty tshirt with your scent on it.
    If you’re settling in for an evening of tv watching, put the crate near/in the living room and get a bag of treats that are crate-only (she doesn’t get that taste for any other purpose than crate-related). Leave the crate door open with a treat “planted” in there…..let her go in and out by herself. In the daytime, try short periods of in-crate, but you have to leave the house for this to work. Use the same term each time “get in the crate, Tahlula” (name is adorable, btw) and she gets a special crate reward treat. Leave the house for 10 minutes, back in, shower her with affection. Straight outside, though! This helps in any housebreaking, too. Morning? Up, out of crate, outside! Next time, extend the time to a run or long walk, etc.
    As for reassurance that she will like it, she will.
    A glimmer of hope for you: We are owned by three beasts – all are shelter/animal control rescues. Our smallest (9lb Terrier-Chi) was in a shelter (after having been abused) in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. The vet told us to not even waste time crate training or house breaking; she was so emotionally distraught, the list of problems was endless. It took us nearly four months, which is significantly longer than “normal” but she happily leaps into her crate both on command or with general indication (jackets on) without hesitation. 😉

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  16. Harley was crate trained and she loved it too, but not at first. she cried every night for a long time, but after a while we only kept her in the crate when we were gone. We would give her a treat when she went in and that worked well. I’d just say “In your crate” and zip – in she’d go, “may I have my treat now?”
    I don’t use the crate any more though because my place is about 2 square feet bigger than the crate. She probably thinks I moved into her crate.
    You should take her to the puppy class at PETSMART. that is where I learned just about all the things I’ve trained harley to do and she is very well behaved.

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  17. I think you and Marvin GardenSalad should take turns showing Tallulah how comforting and nice it is to use the crate. Crawl on in and have a sandwich or something. Wear a flowered hat and be sure to post the video for us on Youtube!

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  18. The local name for Mount Everest? Google was very instructive, and I quote from Wikipedia:
    The Tibetan name for Mount Everest is Chomolungma or Qomolangma, translated as “Mother of the Universe” or “Goddess Mother of the Earth,” and the related Chinese name is Zhūmùlǎngmǎ Fēng or Shèngmǔ Fēng. According to English accounts of the mid-19th century, the local name in Darjeeling for Mount Everest was Deodungha, or “Holy Mountain.” In the 1960s, the Government of Nepal gave the mountain the official Nepali name of Sagarmatha, meaning “Goddess of the Sky.”
    I hope this helps. And really, June, I don’t understand why you couldn’t remember any of this.

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  19. When we crate trained both of our puppies we put a warm brick wrapped in a towel in with them. This way they had something warm to cuddle up with and they still feel like they have other puppies around. A brick is best because it holds the heat the longest and they can not puncture it like a hot water bottle. Wrapped really well you really can not hurt the puppy. I hope she sleeps soon.

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