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Today, I decided to remove the page “Captain’s Log” from the top of my blog, as it had become so outdated (and because I like to tempt fate).

So far, this summer, Bailey has been on his best behavior when we’ve left him at home — to go to the grocery store, the movies, the pool, etc.  It’s a good thing. I don’t miss the breakneck speed grocery shopping time trials at ALL. Added bonus – with every incident-free excursion, I need to chew fewer and fewer Tums the next time we need leave him with the run of the house.

We also continue to add more toys to his collection – to keep things interesting, we only put out a few at a time. A new $4.99 toy every couple of weeks definitely beats $20/day in doggy daycare. Helpful hint: stores like Home Goods, Marshalls, and TJ Maxx are good places to get $15.99 dog toys for $4.99.

The Escalade of squeaky toys; the TWELVE-squeaker quilted beaver. What more could a dog ask for?

Please join me in crossing my fingers that Bailey hasn’t just been on a two-month “break” from destroying things….seriously…

Everything below is re-posted from what was formerly a “page” called Captain’s Log. If you missed this “fun” stage with Bailey, read on…the first entry is from November 2011. 

Captain Destruction has been busy lately, and this page will attempt to document the highs and lows of his life as a stay-at-home dog (SAHD).  In diary form, I’ll record daily exercise, snack and toy activity, and relative level of daily mayhem.

Note: Mayhem DOES NOT happen when anyone is home. A nanny cam would already be in place if I felt like spending the money on one. As it is, the path of destruction is pretty obvious on our “bad days”.

My fervent wish is that this page becomes “boring” sooner than later — as in not much to report. At best, it will document the lengths we go to as we deal with Captain Destruction and, if all goes as planned, give hope to those with their own mayhem makers.

Monday, November 28, 2011 – Prep: 20 minutes @ the dog park before work, frozen Kong filled with peanut butter, rubber stick with peanut butter, Kong Wobbler with 1/2 cup of food, my bath towel (usually a favorite for snuffling), an empty cardboard box, and a Skineez fox toy stuff into a paper towel roll.

Results: Box mangled, paper towel roll shredded, dog bed carried downstairs, and master bedroom alarm clock unplugged and dropped (unchewed).  May try closing bedroom door as well tomorrow. It’s his fav room, though, and I’m afraid he’ll go ballistic when cut off from our bed as a snooze spot.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011 – Prep: 20 minute walk, TV on, Diet Coke box to destroy (I know, this could be setting a bad precedent), Fox in tube (again), Kong with peanut butter, and bully stick snack. Master bedroom door was shut — so no rooms were open upstairs. Results: Fox in tube was IGNORED. Diet Coke fridge pack was obliterated as planned. Jar of decorative stones was DUMPED, but not eaten (THANK GOD). One issue of National Geographic had the front and back cover removed. I know you’re probably thinking “WHY are there even any books or magazines in this room?!” The answer would be (at this point) that otherwise, we’d have a giant empty bookcase in the corner…which we may yet have to do!!! *sighs*

Wednesday, November 30, 2011 – Hump Day — hopefully also “Breakthrough Day”..Prep: VIGOROUS workout at the park with another dog, a 1 mg Xanax in his breakfast (yes, we had these from before and hadn’t really used them), stuffed Kong, bully stick, and TV on. Oh yes, and I got out the spray bottle of water that we used to train him to stop grabbing our clothes with his teeth, and set it on top of the bookshelf in question, after squirting a few warning shots in the air. (I must look RIDICULOUS doing this). Results: HOLY HELL. Um, the Xanax was apparently a mistake..

That’s actually only two books, but it was ALL over the 1st floor. We made an emergency appointment with his behaviourist from last year. He’s been good for so long, we are at a loss. She changed his medication to Elavil (Amitriptyline) tonight. Yes, the dog is finally on more powerful anti-anxiety meds than ME. Now we wait.

Thursday, December 1, 2011 – Prep: Um, forgot I had an 8:45 dentist appointment, SO, took a quick walk with Bailey, gave him his Elavil, and screamed at the kids to get them out the door to the bus, so I could leave. I’m SURE that kind of show before we leave can only HELP the dog’s anxiety, right? Ha. Results: He ignored the last few magazines AND a paper towel roll that I left him for mauling and mixed it up a bit with some PLASTIC…

This is what he got to eat next….a bowl of bread soaked in olive oil to help move the plastic bits along. Can’t wait to see that…really. *sobs silently*

Friday, December 2, 2011 – Prep: Long walk, Kong Wobbler full of food, and THE SARGE, by Merrick.

I purchased our SARGE at a local branch of Pet Valu, for $8.99 plus tax. If it’s a success, I have seen them on Amazon for as low as $5.99 (no SuperSaver Shipping) and $6.99 on some sites which offer free shipping on orders over $49. Waiting to see a) if it works and b) if violent diarrhea or other untoward side effects result – BEFORE I buy a case of these things. Just checking out Merrick’s web site, they have a LOT of variations on it, too, some a little smaller and less expensive.  Results: He LOVED it — to the point of ignoring the whole Kong Wobbler full of food – and, most importantly, the rest of the house’s contents. Here’s what it looked like when I got home:

Saturday, December 3, 2011 -I know it’s only ONE day, but we are VERY hopeful. 24 hours later, no ill effects that we can see. Not sure if it’s got a 6-hour day left in it, but we may be able to use it for the boys’ soccer game tomorrow (Sunday).

Sunday, December 4, 2011 – Bailey chewed on what was left of The Sarge. Good so far. Vomited a tiny piece of rawhide (or The Sarge) later. Hope this doesn’t become a regular occurence.

Monday, December 5, 2011 – Prep: The Sarge, Kong Wobbler of food, and 20 minute walk around hospital campus. Results: The Sarge was stripped cleaned – nothing else touched. Also, I know for a fact that the UPS guy was here at least twice, and Bailey apparently didn’t flip out. On the down side, three knuckle-sized pieces of Sarge broke off; total choking hazard. Bailey didn’t eat them, thankfully. Next Steps: MUST secure more Sarge-like bones at less than $9 each!!!!! I’m feeling like something a bit smaller might do the same trick — especially if I’m going to have to discard it every day to prevent it from breaking apart. Ordered TWELVE of the Merrick 7″ GI bone — $3.00 each and free shipping from www.wag.com

Tuesday, December 6, 2011 – Home with a sick Will. I guess we saved about $7 in bones today. Then again, I’m not getting paid either. Ah well. Bailey has snoozed ALL day.

AND ALL WAS WELL UNTIL……

Sunday, December 11, 2011 – The Christmas tree went up today. We left for the boys’ indoor soccer games and…..two ornaments were destroyed – one glass and one with a styrofoam core. It could’ve been worse, certainly, but we were only gone for two hours. Heading out tonight to get a baby gate or play yard for around the tree while I’m at work.

There IS no photo of what happened on Monday, December 12, 2011 because Operation Christmas Tree Rescue got under way IMMEDIATELY.  Yes, the gate, the tree, the ornaments — ALL down.

Friday, December 23, 2011 – For the past two weeks, the Captain has been enjoying “day camp” while I am at work. Neither Scott or I had the mental fortitude to survive the 8 foot douglas fir coming down AGAIN. Expenses are running $20/day, but things are quite a bit more relaxed at our house, which is nice, with all the craziness of the holidays. I no longer break into a cold sweat when returning to the house at the end of the day. Bailey LOVES the two kennels that he alternates day care days — literally racing into the arms of the sweet girls that work there, so, it’s nice to know that this time has been pleasant for him, too!

After Christmas — the kids and I will be home for a week, and we may begin experimenting with short trips out — as we get into January, the tree will be coming down soon anyway, and I honestly think the tree coming down was more about the gate around it than the Captain assaulting the tree (famous last words, I know).

We also plan on web cam recording of the center of the house — so we can get an idea of the timing and circumstance of anything that may happen in our absence. Some kind friends suggested a “nanny cam” that can be remotely monitored, but I do not think that WATCHING the house get destroyed, while I sit at my desk at work, has any redeeming value — and could certainly be VERY stressful to see on a real time basis.

Friday, December 30, 2011- Our vet called today to get a status update on Captain Destruction (secret identity — Bailey the husky mix). He’s been on his new meds for about three weeks, and she wanted to know how he was doing. I was able to tell her that he is definitely tolerating the Elavil twice daily, but, beyond that, we haven’t exactly put him to test. Remember, his behavior is above reproach (that sounds British, doesn’t it?) when we’re home with him. The Christmas tree and other decorations come down NEXT weekend. THEN, we start trial absences. Until then, it’ll be day camp when we all go back to school next week.

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