Wednesday, August 26, 2009

And so the year begins

Classes finally start tomorrow! It's kind of bittersweet. The nerdy part of me makes me happy that I'll finally be doing something productive now (it's been a lazy 2 weeks in the boss is on vacation, heh), but the other side of me knows I'll actually have to start studying soon, LOL!

Wally is doing well; he loves his time outside of his cage and he and Winnie are getting along just fine.

I've learned that rabbits like to do five things:

1) Chew
2) Dig
3) Hide
4) Toss
5) Scratch

The great thing about rabbits is that it's so easy to keep the entertained- in a very cheap way, no less! All you really need is a cardboard box and some scissors. You can cut a hole in it to make a burrow, stuff it with hay/shredded/paper, or just let them chew it or toss it. You can't get cheaper than that!

Wally is personally not a big fan of digging or tossing items, but he definitely loves to chew and eat his hay! I made a little hay box for him today. I took a regular cardboard box and cut little shapes on each side, then stuffed it with hay. He enjoys pulling it all out and making a big mess in the living room, haha.

I also used a small cardboard box (originally containing modeling kit materials) that came with my organic chemistry book set. Who knew organic chemistry could actually be useful? Hah!

In non-rabbit related news, Winnie is becoming a little star on campus. Almost everywhere I walk, people ooh and ahh over my little Corgi, haha. I think Winnie reminds a lot of students of their own dogs and pets back at home. Sometimes it's just nice to see a furry face amidst all the stress of studying and exams! Tonight there was an event out in the Arts Quad, and Winnie got quite a few belly rubs and ear scratches from a few freshmen.

We're both settling into our new apartment well. I think I'm finally starting to feel more at "home", if you know what I mean!

I'm also very excited to finally enroll in agility classes this fall. Now that summer is over, a new set of obedience/agility classes will take place. We'll be in both beginning obedience and beginning agility (you have to take obedience if you want to take agility- their policy!).

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Meet Wally

My roommate and I got a bunny. Yep, a bunny.

Don't worry, it wasn't really an impulse decision or anything. My friend, the one who made me the edible Winnie cupcakes for my birthday, had a rabbit named Coconut (or Cocobutt, as she affectionally calls him) that she just didn't have the time to take care of.

My friend is a 3rd year vet student who was somewhat forced to take in Coconut from her mother's friend who has brain cancer..,and you just can't say no to that kind of situation! Unfortunately, she also has a fennec fox and other animals in the house--the bunny wasn't getting enough "out-of-cage" time and such, but she didn't want to put him on Craigslist or give him to just anyone. That's where I come in. I (and my roommate) had been wanting a second animal for a while (not necessarily a dog, but just a second animal). Ferrets were out of the question because they're too much work, like young puppies that never grow up. A rabbit seemed pretty ideal. And there you have it- the timing and situation was perfect.

She dropped him off today. He got to explore his new surroundings and seems to like it. I named him Wally after the robot Wall-E in the movie. He's a very sweet little rabbit, a good "first time" bunny. He's calm, has no issues using the litter box, and is good with being handled and having his nails clipped. He is about 3 years old and most likely a cross-breed.

I have to admit, I was really wary of how Winnie would be around him. She has a very high prey drive and she has tried to chase after wild rabbits before. To my pleasant surprise, Winnie was great around Wally! Just a couple sniffs and following around, and that was that. Wally's not fazed at all by Winnie either. I think they'll be just fine!


Winnie is staring at the romaine lettuce, not Wally. She has taken a liking to them...

The best part is that Wally came with literally everything- his cage, food, litter, treats, toys, I mean everything. He is quite a spoiled little rabbit, minus the attention that he wasn't getting enough of!

Winnie stole some lettuce from Wally. This is her "nom" face, haha.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Don't worry, I'm alive!

Hi everyone! Sorry for being MIA this past week. I only just got Internet in my apartment yesterday (would it be bad if I said that not having Internet really really sucks? LOL).

I moved into my apartment this past Sunday. Winnie and I have adjusted pretty well, except for the fact that There. Is. No. Air. Conditioning. In Ithaca, where it's rather humid, not having air conditioning during the summer can get pretty nasty. I bought a tower fan and 2 smaller fans, so it's not too bad. I'm still on the lookout for air conditioners on sale on Craigslist.

Here are some pictures of my new place. My roommate's moving in tomorrow (yay) so I finally won't be so lonely anymore, lol! It's crazy how different an apartment is from a dorm.

First of all, you actually get closets. Large closets.

You also get bigger beds.

And couches, yay! (the other one is not shown)

The kitchen. For someone who loves food and cooking/baking it's smaller than I would like, but it'll do. And yes, that is Winnie in the background.

The dining area. The windows on the right lead to a nice, large patio! Too bad it's unusable for most of the year because of all the snow...

And there you go, a tour of my apartment. I have some cute pictures of Winnie from this past week, I just don't have my camera with me at the moment. I promise to put them up on Monday!

Anyway, aside from working in the lab and such I've been taking Winnie around campus, mostly North Campus because it's close by. North Campus is where all the freshman dorms are located. It has a lot of nice grassy areas, and Winnie has been having a blast peeing on every single lawn.

We did meet some deer face-to-face the other day! It was Winnie's first time seeing deer. She and I stared at a doe and her 2 fawns for a good minute or so before they took off. It was like a nasty staring contest! And of course, Winnie tried to run after them when they ran...silly little turd!

Speaking of North Campus, today was Move-In day for the freshman. I remember myself being in their place exactly last year. Frantic parents and students rushing around with maps...asking students for directions...trying to lug all their items into the dorms with 20 people crammed into one elevator...

Boy, I'm glad I'm not a freshman anymore.

Classes start on Thursday the 27th. I just got my booklist today. There goes another $250-300 down the drain. Sigh.

Winnie's whining at me. I think she needs to pee. Good night, everyone!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

A curious encounter

We encountered a caterpillar on our walk this morning.

Naturally, I ran back inside to grab my camera, LOL.

I kind of expected Winnie to pull off something silly, like bark and try to paw it. Unfortunately (or I should probably say, thankfully) she found the caterpillar super boring and moved on with her sniffing.

In other news, I'm moving into my new (as in, actual-non-subletting) apartment in approximately 45 minutes! I have all my stuff ready and packed in boxes. Right now I'm enjoying my last hour of cable in my current sublet. I'm going to miss watching the Food Network every evening...

The other sad news is that I won't have internet until this Thursday, yikes! Time Warner was completely booked until then, so I guess I'll be doing my internet-ing from work for the next few days, LOL.

I am really excited to be back living on campus, though! I'll be taking Winnie on a lot of "tours" around the school today and tomorrow.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Edible Winnie's

Okay, so normally I don't like to make a big fuss about my birthday, but this year I do have to write a blog post about it because my friend, Brynn, made me cupcakes that look like Winnie! She's pretty good at the whole baking-and-decorating-cakes-and-cupcakes thing. It was a complete surprise, and an awesome one at that!

Aren't they awesome? They're chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting (in black, tan, and white). The nose is a Reese's peanut butter chip and the ears are made of soft chocolate cookies. The elevated nose is made of marshmallows, but you can't tell because it's all covered in frosting.

Sadly, Winnie couldn't eat her self-portrait cupcakes. It would've ended in a nasty trip to the emergency vet...

Even for a girl like me who has a huge sweet tooth, they looked too good to eat!

I did eventually. Eat them, that is.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

As summer nears its end..

It's going to be a sad 2 weeks for Winnie and I. My friend, Hansel's mom, and our other friend, Juneau/Ava/Brandt's mom, are both going to their respective veterinary internships. Hansel's mom is going back to California to do a small animal/clinic internship for 2 weeks, and Juneau's mom is going to Virginia to do a wildlife animal internship for 4 weeks. Hansel is staying with Juneau's mom's husband (yes, this gets confusing, sorry!) for the time being. This means that Winnie and I will be Sheltie-less for 2 whole weeks, yikes! I think we'll manage though :)

Tonight the head (PI; principal investigator) of my research lab, Sutter Genetics Lab, invited all of us to dinner and games at his house as kind of an "end-of-the-summer" type of thing. He allowed me to bring Winnie because he has a black lab himself. We had yummy taco salad, homemade ice cream + fudge, and s'more brownies.

Good stuff! Lucy, the 1 yr old lab, was quite excited to have a canine visitor in the house. They spent the evening/night chasing each other around the backyard and entertained the rest of us. At certain times Winnie wasn't so keen on having an exuberant young lab constantly pestering her to play. It seems as if her personal bubble has gotten "larger" these days; she gets grumpy and barks if a dog gets too "in-her-face". I don't think Lucy minded it so much, though, as she was quite relentless in her attempts to get Winnie to chase her, lol!

It was nice but weird (in a good way, though) seeing everyone in the lab in a different sort of element (i.e. not-consumed-with-research-stuff). On the downside, this means that summer is near its end. I start school on the 27th.

Say whaaaaa----??!!

I'm actually kind of excited to start classes and see everyone again (I especially love shopping for school supplies, I'm a nerd!) but I know that the novelty will wear off in a week and the stress will hit me like a ton of bricks.


I'm also moving out of my sublet and into my new apartment this coming Saturday, the 15th. It's bittersweet because I absolutely love my current sublet complex (VERY dog friendly and considered one of the more "luxurious" apartments in Ithaca) but I'm excited to finally be able to have my own place where I can actually store my stuff away instead of keeping them in boxes! However, I've considered moving into Hansel's mom's apartment next year when she graduates from vet school and moves. If you all remember, she currently lives in the same complex as where I am subletting. It'll be an easy move since I can just buy her furniture from her! But that's at least a year from now, so we'll see what happens.

Unfortunately I didn't take any pictures tonight for your viewing pleasure. I do hate writing blog posts without some cute pictures of Winnie, so here goes:

Winnie curling up on a comforter (she's doing this as I type this blog post)

Tomorrow starts another week. Hope you all have a good one!

Friday, August 7, 2009

No longer itching (for the most part)

Hi everyone!

I just wanted to add a follow-up post in response to all your comments!

You guys are right in that I shouldn't get another dog for at least a few years. I think the practical side of me would have eventually kicked it, but for the time being the not-so-practical side of me.

I also wanted to clarify- I wanted an adult, housebroken, neutered, sufficiently-trained dog. I never intend to breed dogs, now or ever. I'm just not interested in that kind of stuff! I prefer training and participating in dog sports rather than the whole breeding/conformation thing. Anyway, the ideal dog I was thinking of was a retired show dog from a breeder or something along those lines. And believe it or not, I actually wanted a Sheltie, not a Corgi. I think the great experience I've had with Hansel and Juneau this summer really warmed me up to the breed. I was even considering contacting Hansel and Juneau's breeder to see if she had an adult sheltie available!

Anyway, just a thanks to you all for bringing me back to my senses (although I probably would've come back to them sooner or later)! I think I'll stick to my original plan, which was:

Enjoy my time with just 1 dog for at least 1-2 years, then start fostering occasionally when I have time (like during Thanksgiving/Christmas break, when I'm free). Then get another dog (preferably a rescue) when I'm a senior or when I have graduated .

I did feel guilty about wanting a breeder dog for the past few days when I have always told myself that my second dog would be a rescue!

Anyway, sorry about all the rambling. I just didn't want to clear the air leave you all hanging, LOL!

Someday, when I settle down (uh, yeah...) and get a nice house with a fenced-in yard, I will have my little dog herd with Corgis, Shelties, Border Collies, and Australian Shepherds.....


In the meantime, I think I'll settle just fine with Sheltie playdates with Hansel and Juneau! I go over to their house enough anyway, LOL.

Bitten by the bug

I've been bitten by the bug.

The "I-want-a-second-dog" bug.

One side of me is telling me that I shouldn't get a second dog when I need to concentrate on my schoolwork.

The other side is saying that another adult dog wouldn't be too much of a change, and it would be good for both him (I want a male) and Winnie.


Monday, August 3, 2009

A whack at grooming

Today our trip to the Ithaca Farmer's Market got cut short when Hansel's mom got called in to do an optho surgery (she's currently doing a rotation in anesthesia). She had been hoping not get called in, but alas, she did! I ended up watching Hansel for most of the day.

At one point I got really bored and noticed that Hansel's paws were getting hairy. And when I say hairy, I mean really hairy!

I decided to take my first whack at grooming and started trimming his paw fur with a pair of scissors (I didn't have electric clippers on hand). Hansel's so unfrazzled by anything and everything that I can literally do whatever I want to him and he'll just lay there. Talk about a ragdoll!

For my first time at "grooming", I have to say I did a pretty decent job! His feet are now nice and trimmed. It's obviously not the job of a professional groomer, but I did work for free ;)

Front paws are done, back paws (which I'm holding) have been untouched

Hansel models his clean paws.

Winnie preferred to keep herself away from my scissors. She fell asleep by the window...

Hansel's mom got a nice surprise when she came by to pick him up later this evening. Yay!