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    Reading, gardening, weightlifting, astronomy, computers, and of course raising our beloved Border Collie mix Xena !

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Gary_and_Karen's Achievements


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  1. Thanks ! (even though it was made for Xena, I'm in it with her regularly also to play Frisbee or ball with her and my wife calls it my "man cave", in fun of course (I also plan on having a lounge chair in there so I also can relax in the shade outside after doing some yard work, and I plan on getting a raised canvas bed for Xena to lay on when she wants to relax after playing for a while (I'll have to see about later on getting my wife to take a picture of me and Xena both relaxing in there, me on the lounge chair and Xena on her raised bed next to the lounge chair
  2. Meant to do an update sooner, but been busy trying to get some other yard stuff done Eventually I plan to extend the wood frame roof the rest of the way, but I am finished for now. Here are some photos showing the finished (for now) wood frame as well as some photos showing the finished (for now) project with the tarp roof attached over the wood frame part connecting to the original PVC half left from the original project. Xena definitely enjoys being in the shade on the hot sunny days
  3. We adopted ours from an SPCA after seeing her photo and info online on Petfinder Once we met her in person we were even moreso hooked on her. So I guess the initial factor was how she looked, but meeting her in person really confirmed it for sure, she was feisty as a young pup, but very loveable ! (ours was adopted just as a family member, so herding ability was not a concern as it might be for those looking for a working dog)
  4. Thanks for all the very interesting replies thus far, it does indeed seem that overall most dogs will usually easily adapt to the bedtimes and get-up times of their respective households. (or simply decide to go to bed when they are ready (probably the usual exception is when the dog is a very young pup, I remember when Xena was very very young she would need to wake me up for an early morning potty time before my normal get-up time, but now she is ok till my normal get-up time
  5. Just wondering how it varies from household to household. Xena has acclimated to our schedule, since I work part time second shift a couple days a week I am used to getting up around 9 - 10 AM even on my off days. Xena usually wants to go in her crate to take an evening nap around 6:30 - 7:00 PM but looks forward to coming out again about 10:30 - 11:00 PM for about 30 minutes to an hour to go potty first and then spend some time with us on the bed after which she goes back in her crate on her own and is content to sleep till about 10:00 in the morning. Xena is only about 1 1/2 years old so maybe as she gets a little older she might want to stay up later and not need an evening nap or is that usual for most dogs to sleep that much reguardless of age ? (some evenings she is a little reluctant to go in her crate for an evening nap even though she seems tired enough for one after an active day
  6. Karo is a handsome pup ! Our dog Xena very much prefers having me in the same room (or in her yard with her outside), but she has matured to where she will tolerate me being in another room without her for a while, but she is always glad to see me come back in the same room Others have given some good advice, and part of it indeed seems that it simply takes a little time for a new dog to realize and feel secure that when you do leave a room that they understand you will be back.
  7. You already got plently of advice, so I'll offer some encouragement. It seems most if not all pups go thru that stage and at the time you wonder when it will ever stop, (I sure did but our pup grew out of what seemed like almost constant nipping at times, so stay encouraged ! (she's not perfect, (who is ?) but what a great improvement from the very young days !)
  8. Here are a couple of pics to show the progress so far on the wood frame (I still need to add ties to several of the rafters, as well as extend the framing closer to the halfway point for now)
  9. I would like to think so , but I do believe she feels loved and that she does appreciate the shade when the tarp is up because during the time it was back down before I got it back up again she would at times try to find whatever little patch of shade she could, like next to the plastic chair, or at the far end of the yard when the trees would start to offer some shade at that end of the yard when the sun was getting low enough. (I just remembered her vet saying on a previous visit that Xena sure is a happy dog, so that was good to realize the vet pays attention to the emotional condition of the dogs as well as the physical stuff) When she was sitting next to me in the sun I could feel a big difference in the temperature on her fur from the side facing the sun and the side facing away from the sun as her black fur absorbs heat much more easily, so it does not surprise me she likes to have some nice cooler shady areas to cool off after being in the sunny areas (and of course there is the very nice benefit of having extended outdoor non-muddy play times even when it is raining )
  10. We had a very rare heavy snow (very rare for our area) some weeks ago and it collapsed the PVC framing. I put half of it back up and found out that very strong wind gusts can do the same so I put two vertical 1 1/2 inch PVC pipes to give the extra support needed to keep the PVC frame from flexing too much in wind gusts. I had a lot of treated lumber from another past project we decided not to do for now and I am in the process of making a wood canopy frame starting from the far end. It will be covered with chicken wire and the other tarp will go on top of that. I will eventually extend the wood frame further and further till the entire thing is a wood frame. Here are some photos of the start of the wood frame as well as the PVC support posts to make the PVC part wind resistant in the meantime.
  11. Thanks for asking G ! I didn't mean to go so long without posting here, life gets busier than usual sometimes, but I'm looking forward to retirement Xena has been doing very well, she still has her occasional rowdy moments, but overall has much improved behavior. Her recent yearly check up shows she is blessed with good health, the vet said just work on getting her to lose about 5 pounds so I am measuring out her food a little more carefully. She is a smartie, very loving, and the vet made a comment saying she is sure a happy dog I could go on and on about her unique mannerisms, ect, (I'll see about posting some more recent pictures soon, and even a short video clip of her playing in the snow chasing snowballs) She is a beloved member of our family. So how are your darlings doing ?
  12. My dog loves to play in the snow (during the few very rare times we actually had enough snow to blanket the ground) and she does't mind light rain, but (usually) not heavy or driven rain. The canopy keeps a large area from getting real muddy and messy (and thereby keeps us out of trouble with my wife from us tracking mud in the house ) but also makes it a lot more bearable to stay outside longer during the hot sunny summer days. (during the summer in the sun her black fur really absorbs the heat, I could tell a big difference from when she was sitting next to me in the sun and when I petted her side facing the sun it was very noticeably warmer than the shady side, so being under the canopy in the shade can make a big difference, I remember last summer when it was so uncomfortable outside from the ot sun she was wanting to go back in the house after just a very short time) It was not as much work as it might seem, and the PVC was not too expensive, and I found a place online where I got two large tarps (each 20x40, thought the finished size is a little shorter) for only about $38 each with free shipping.
  13. The rain adding a lot of weight to the snow does make a lot of sense. Thanks for roof rake idea, but this recent rare heavy snow started while I was sleeping and had collasped about 2/3 the roof by the time I went to undo the tarps. I think my idea for added support should be ok for the usual very light snow we might sometimes get, but I still might consider removing the tarps temporarily if any of that rare heavy snow is predicted again in the future. I had hoped any snow would have mostly slid off such a curved roof, but it was the type of snow that stuck to even some side surfaces, so you can be sure I'll be more careful in the future
  14. It was some work but not as much as it might seem. She likes to be out for an extended time and the uncovered yard can get muddy in many places, so it keeps a large area from getting drenched and suitable for staying outside for a while. Also, being in direct sunlight here during the summer can get very uncomfortable very fast (especially with her black fur) and the shade from the canopy can make a big difference in how long we can play outside at a time.
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