Friday, December 29, 2006

Visitor From the East

On our recent morning jaunts through the neighborhood, Tomokee likes to say hello to Woof von Tailwagger, a Landseer Newfoundland dog. Woof is an annual Massachusetts visitor who comes out with his owners for a month or so each winter. He's quite a hit in the neighborhood everytime he's here.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Editorial Comment

I'm a knitter, so when I saw this knitting book for dog sweaters at the Mountain View BookBuyers, I just HAD to buy it. It was sitting on the kitchen table until I found Tomokee busily tearing it apart. Dog, are you trying to tell me something? Sadly, Bruce is taking the dog's side.

Monday, December 25, 2006

What did I get? What did I get?

Tomokee opens his first Christmas gift from us. He sort of got stuck at one point and did not know to continue.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Dog Lexicography -- Part I

I do patent law part time these days, so I thought I would talk about the terms people use to describe various dog activities -- often words that aren't in dictionaries. In patent law, the patentee can create new terms or redefine old terms as it suits them ("the patentee may serve as their own lexicographer" -- bolstered by the recent en-banc CAFC Phillps v. AWH case). I will touch on two words that we've used to describe doggie behaviour:

To Hork/Horked/Horking


"Can you use it in a sentence?" I hear some ex-spelling-bee champ asking. Sure I can, and, in so doing, it will become clear what "horked" means:

"Ew, the dog Horked up something that looks like a chicken neck."
'nuff said, no?

Snorfbuckling's a little harder to describe, but here goes... when a dog decides to vigorously chew in the nether regions (of the dog, not Finland or something), the sheer concentration and ferocity of said action is often accompanied by semi-occluded moist breathing sounds, modulated by the chewing. Sort of a "Glertz/snuffle/glortz" sound at about 1.5 times per second. This sound is often heard in our house in the middle of the night when the dog, for some reason associated with random neural firing, decides it's time to power-groom.

"What is that sound? (asked groggily)"
"Just the dog Snorfbuckling again."

More words to come.

If you're a dog person, this probably makes sense; if you're not, little of this blog probably makes much sense to you.

Thursday, December 21, 2006


I can't believe he ate the bag balm! It was bad enough when he ate the vaseline. That stuff can't be tasty, can it?

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Escape from the Planet of the Dogs

OK -- "what's this got to do with Tomokee?", you might ask. Not much, 'cept he wasn't along for the ride... sometimes a little escape is a good thing. Dogs aren't welcome at casinos, limos or Aerosmith concerts.

So, yes, I went to see the Aerosmith concert in Reno -- staying in Tahoe at Harrahs (for free! Yay!). The casino arranged for a limo to take me and Rob (a friend I dragged along as a birthday treat) from Tahoe to the front door of the venue (and back). We had a nice VIP host, Angie Antonetti, riding shotgun in the back with us, doling out beer/soda/whatever. The concert was great, except I could have done without the opening act ("Hinder") which seemed like screeching, angry youth. I prefer screeching, angry old farts, thankyouverramuch.

The next night, Rock&Roll Hall-o'-Famer Dave Mason played in Tahoe... what an outstanding musical talent! If you ever get a chance, see this guy and his outstanding band -- not the flash kind of show, just outstanding music.

So, what about the dog? Well, he learns fast. He vocalized loudly when I got back and now attacks the luggage when I touch it ("luggage is evil, it leaves me home"). Now I owe Betty two massages (not from me, the store-bought kind) as atonement for leaving her home with T-dog.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Shopping at Petco

We walked to our local Petco yesterday to buy Tomokee a Christmas gift. After all, he's been a good boy, more or less. It's not that he needs more treats or toys, but it would be nice for him to be able to rip and tear into something without hearing "NO!" every time. I picked up a small hickory smoked bone and a stereo dumbbell squeaky toy (as if "stereo" makes a difference in squeaky toys!) I decided not to buy a giant beef hock bone that was about half the size of his head. (What is a beef hock, anyway?)

Friday, December 15, 2006

The Shirt

I made a shirt with this great sexy cowboy fabric as a gift for friend. (See below). Since I had some leftover fabric, I just had to make Tomokee a canine version of the shirt. It was not as easy as I thought it would be. Tomokee has a great physique (broad shoulders, big chest, narrow waist), which is actually difficult to fit. I did not purchase a pattern, so I had to make my own pattern by trial and error using some cotton fabric. I think the end result came out pretty darn nice.

Here's the human version of the shirt:

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

He's a Graduate!

We're ever so proud! He completed (and I survived) beginning obedience training from Deep Peninsula Dog Training Club. Pat Alvarez was a great teacher -- it's all about teaching the dog owners, not the dogs. (They did spell his name wrong, but then, Tomokee is not a common dog name).

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Sometimes a tennis ball just isn't organic enough

It must be the influence of the recently-opened Whole Foods in our town or something, but the dog suddenly went all Euell Gibbons on us, sleeping with a pine cone in his mouth instead of his beloved tennis ball (played by a rotating cast of characters, since he keeps turning the tennis balls into "baldy balls" by removing one of the figure-8-shaped felt pieces... very slimy and nasty, requiring replacement... he never seems to notice the swap, like viewers of Bewitched and the Dick York/ Dick Sargent thing).

Monday, December 11, 2006

Tennis, Anyone?

Tomokee just LOVES his tennis balls. Well, at least this does not promote tooth decay.

Saturday, December 9, 2006

Belated Birthday Biscuit

Today was a drizzly cloudy day, but we took our usual walk to downtown Los Altos. The local Five Paw Bakery gives out free personalized dog biscuits for your dog's birthday. Of course we had to get one, since Tomokee had just turned one year old.

The box:

The biscuit:

All gone...

Friday, December 8, 2006

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Many Happy Returns

Happy Birthday, Tomokee! You are now a year old, which means you should be well on your way to becoming a well-mannered adult dog. Right.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

Tomokee Has Issues with Rakes

Actually, Tomokee has issues with rakes and brooms and sweeping in general. Is it the noise, or is he protesting because he thinks I'm sweeping away good stuff? Here's a video of him attacking the rake, or something.

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Massage, anyone?

Tomokee has a nice and comfy dog bed. However, he's always liked this massage chair. He jumped onto it even as we were moving it into the house. He now prefers to sleep in the massage chair instead of his bed. He is kind enough to share, and will let me use it for its intended purpose whenever he is not using it.

Monday, December 4, 2006

Ow, my nuts!

We think that Tomokee might have been raised as a lap dog when he was a pup. He still likes to climb onto an available lap now and then, but this can be a little more difficult now that he is 55 lbs.

Sunday, December 3, 2006

Place Your Bets

We have a bet with our friends Mark and Charlotte(a veterinarian). They are betting that Tomokee's weight will be 65 lbs. or more by December, 2007 (when he is 2 years old). They believe this because he has such large feet. We are betting otherwise because we have heard opinions that his bone structure has more or less stabilized by seven months and he will not grow much larger. Also, we're just plain hopeful that we won't have a huge dog. We had a weigh-in today, and the weight chart so far is as follows:

DateWeight (lbs.)
June, 200648
August, 200652
October, 200655
December 2, 200655.4

Saturday, December 2, 2006


We took our usual Saturday walk to downtown Los Altos today. We stopped over at the local Five Paw Bakery and picked up some treats for Tomokee. Here is a photo of their "treats bar".

And below is a photo of Tomokee exchanging business cards with a fellow canine customer.

Friday, December 1, 2006

Purebred piedi grandi cane misto

Here is a photo of Tomokee shortly after we adopted him. His feet are huge! He was 48 lbs. at the time. He is now about 1 year old and weighs 55 lbs., but his feet are still disproportionately large.