Monday, June 30, 2008

Watch "All About My Dog" (狗狗心事)

All About My Dog (狗狗心事)
Also Known As: "Inu no eiga"

Yuki Amami
YosiYosi Arakawa
Noriko Eguchi
Misaki Ito
Jiei Kabira
Tae Kimura
Soichiro Kitamura
Manami Konishi
Aoi Miyazaki
Shido Nakamura
Shirô Sano
Ryuta Sato
Katsumi Takahashi
Yoji Tanaka
Eriko Watanabe
Hinano Yoshikawa

Isshin Inudou
Hideki Kuroda
Yoshio Kuroda
Satoshi Nagai
Atsushi Sanada
Shinsuke Sato
Tetsuhisa Yazu

Duration: 97 minutes

Language: Japan

Year: 2005

Dino's Rating: 7/10

"All About My Dog" is Japanese movie made up of a compilation of short stories. We have the DVD at home and my favorite stories are the ones about the Shiba Inu, Pochi and another one about a girl named Mika and her dog, Marimo, both are tear jerkers. Unfortunately. the other stories are rather crappy, like the one made into a musical and another one about a dog's infatuation.

Aunty Esther sent me a You Tube link to the entire Marimo short film with English Subtitles, so I thought of sharing it with you all today. It is almost 11 minutes long, but definitely worth watching. The music is beautiful too! Please be warned that this one has a cry factor of 10, so watch with caution.

Please give all your doggies a scratchie and big hug today!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Group Practice at Taiwan University Again!

Last Saturday was another super hot day, I met my friends in the late afternoon at the Taiwan University. This time we took turns for a mock test.

Pudding's dad was very kind to brief us through the test and we all took turns to practice.

Pudding's dad acted as the tester and Dad gave the "Off" Command.

Belle, Nana and Wenwen waiting patiently for their turns.

Lots of yummy treats and toys on the floor...see the half piece of greenie? Er....well...the other half went into my stomach. :D

I didn't do well during this session. The temptation on the floor was too great and when I was supposed to run towards Dad after being released from the stay position, I went straight for the treats twice in a row. Not sure if it was because of the heat, but I was also finding it difficult to concentrate and focus on Dad. Dad wasn't too happy with me, but he did give me a pig ear after the session.

My friends will be having a practice session on Sunday at B&W, a doggie hangout with a huge swimming pool and restaurant. They will all be going swimming after the practice. I will be having my Dr. Dog class on Sunday afternoon so I will not be joining them. It's a real pity because I think it is going to be so much fun. I can't wait to hear all about it.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Visiting Howler

Last Friday night, Howler's family invited us to their home for dinner and a game of mahjong.

Look at the scrumptious spread! Howler's owners' Mom is a great cook and whipped up some delicious Singaporean delights.

Bak Kut Teh, this is a peppery pork rib soup. The homemade chilli is a perfect condiment too!

Mouthwatering squid in spicy gravy.

Healthy steamed fish.

Green leafy vegetables.

Colorful mixed vegetable dish.

It was wonderful seeing my dear friend again! We played for a while, did a bit of trick training, but I didn't stay long as I was feeling a little restless, so Mom brought me home and Dad stayed on for the mahjong game.

Big thank you to Howler's family for being such wonderful hosts and of course for the super yummy home cooked food, can we come again next week?

Dr. Dog Advanced Level: Lesson Two & Three

It's getting too hot and I have been bumming around and not getting much done. Before I continue to hibernate, let me post an update before everyone starts to wonder where I am. So, please excuse my laziness while I consolidate my last two Dr. Dog lessons together.

After the group practice I mentioned in my previous blog entry, we went to a pet fair near the Taipei City Hall, it was an open air event to promote pet adoption so there were several pet shelters and rescue groups with some very cute puppies.

There were also some pets performing tricks on stage, but it was too hot, so we walked around a bit, bought my anti flea treatment, took some photos and left.

Here's me with the Taipei 101 building in the background.

We went to a park next to the pet fair to rest and drink some water before we head off to school. The weather was really hot, but suddenly it started to rain heavily, we managed to hop into a taxi before we got really wet.

Lesson Two

I had two new classmates that day.

Lafy the Corgi.

And Gula (古拉) the Husky.

Like my classmate, Ah Dan, Gula is also spotting an unique summer look.

The two tricks we learned that day were cross paws and weave. I am only able to cross my right paw at the moment, so hopefully by weekend I would be able to cross my left as well. For weave, I can do it pretty well, but I still need to work on speed and to weave on 0ne cue.

We had lots of heeling practice with distractions that day and then our instructor placed square mats in a circle on the floor with cones at four corners of the room and we have to sit on the squares while one owner and dog go around and place a piece of paper on anyone he chooses. The person who has been marked and the person who placed the marker must then run with their dogs to the nearest cone and the fastest dog to lie down next to the cone wins. The team that wins gets to sit on the empty mat and the game continues. I think our owners enjoyed that game because there were lots of excitement and laughter.

After that, we learned to heel both to the left and to the right.

This was followed by some "Stay" practice. We have to stay in position while our owners go across the room to pet other dogs.

For the next game, our owners have to remove their treat pouch. I have been warned that they will be weaning off the treats as we go, but I can't believe it is happening so fast! Luckily, it was just removing the pouch and putting the treats at 3 different locations in the room. All of us heel together with our owners and when our instructor says "Sit!", everyone sits and then we can stand up and go and get our treats.

Besides practicing the two new tricks, the homework for the week was also to train our noses, by scattering treats around and letting our noses sniff them out.

For the next lesson, we have to bring some costumes and props.

Lesson Three

The two tricks for the day were to learn how to walk forward and backwards and make a facial expression. We can choose facial expressions like sneeze, yawn or licking lips.

Next was getting familiar with things like walking stick, umbrella, hula hoop and crutches etc.

After that, all of us have to stay in position while our owners leave the room, dress up in all the weird costumes and come back in. We have to all stay quietly and our owners can only enter the room when the instructor said so.

Ah Dan's Mom and Gula's Mom.

Yummy's Dad.

Bibi's Owners.

My Daddy.

Homework for the week was to do an automatic sit when we are at any door. We have to be in a sit position even when our owners open the door and step out and we can go only when our owners give the "Come" command.

Before the class ended, Bibi's owner gave me some yummy home baked biscuits. Thank you, Kerry!

While waiting to go home, Yummy and Lafy got some treats too!

Now, let me turn on the air condition and lie down in my favorite corner. Tata for now!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Group Practice at Vieshow

Last Sunday morning, we went off to Vieshow for a group practice. When we arrived at the Vieshow area, there was a Statue of Liberty in front of the New York New York shopping mall and we stopped there for a photo shoot.

It was an extremely hot day and we were all panting like crazy, looking for the nearest shade and air conditioned shelters, but everyone was really making a lot of effort to take the chance to practice together.

The main objective for the day's practice was socialization with people and furry friends, so what we did was taking turns to heel, lots of staying and inviting people on the street to pet us.

In addition to getting lots of pets, we also got to take photos with many people.

It was a very good turnout that day with a total of 13 dogs! There were several new faces, so let me introduce you to them one by one:

Tin Ting the West Highland Terrier, family of my classmate, Bibi.

Snoopy the Beagle.

Mei Mei (妹妹) the little black dog.

Gong Wan (貢丸) the Chihuahua.

Ban Tang (半糖) the fluffy white dog.

Buggy the Labrador.

Ocean the Husky.

Ocean waited patiently as his mommy went shopping.

Ocean was a joy to hug!

We also met Nana again, unfortunately, Wen Wen didn't come because A2 Mom came alone.

Here's Pudding posing nicely together with me.

Here is Shiny Xian Cao Mi(仙草蜜) the Black Labrador.

Many people were afraid to go near black dogs, so Xian Cao Mi didn't get too many pets. Her family decided to dress her up and it worked, she did get some pets at the end.

Black Beauty Xian Cao Mi looking sexy in a tutu dress.

Here's Belle looking pretty with a red scarf.

Every practice session always end with a group photo, it was not an easy task to have all 13 dogs in the photo. These were all we could managed:

After the session, we went to a cafe for lunch and then headed to a pet fair nearby. We also went for our Dr. Dog lesson in the late afternoon. That was indeed a very tiring day for all of us.

Big thank you to everyone who showed up, it was great practicing with all of you!