Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Just Some Sleepy Pictures

So, since the last post was a lot of writing and not a lot of pictures, I figured I would just post some of the pictures I have taken of Ferdinand over the last week.  Funny they are all of him sleeping.  

Derek's friend, and Co-Owner of, Adam came over and I snapped this picture of them snuggling up together.

Before Derek could come into bed every night, that's where Ferdinand decides he is going to sleep.

Then, when Derek comes into bed, look at who he curls up with.

Believe me when I say, this isn't even his loud snoring.

This is what happens when I sit on the couch.  Never fails.

We placed the cat's bed under the tv.  Now that bed has become Ferdinand's second bed and the cat toys hanging from the drawers are now his.  Notice how he isn't even sleeping in the bed.  He started there but somehow ended up right next to it.

The Tale of the Terrible Vet

One of the things that Derek and I read in the book, "Bulldogs for Dummies," was that once we get the dog, we should take it to our vet to be looked over, just in case.  When we got the cats, we had taken them to the Meadowlands Vet Hospital in Washington, PA.  

We figured that because it was close and wasn't too expensive that they were fine...especially since we only take them once a year for their shots.  The last time that we took them to get their shots, we waited in the waiting room for over an hour for their appointment.  Dexter and Doakes, who are normally pretty cool with going to the vet, were pissed off, to say the least.  When they got in to see the doctor, they had had enough.  I held Dexter while the vet checked Doakes.  Doakes started making crazy noises and never even tried to swat at the doctor, but the doctor demanded "the net."  It's exactly what it sounds like.  She threw the net over the cat and her paw came shooting out of a hole like some kind of scene out of a horror movie.  I couldn't help but laugh, although she was so rough on Doakes.  Dexter on the other hand just laid there and took the vet appointment.  Needless to say, I wasn't impressed with them, but figured she didn't want to take any chances.

When I called the Meadowlands to make my appointment for Ferdinand,  I asked if they had had experience with Bulldogs, they told me that they had.  I inquired about getting Ferdinand microchipped and they said that they suggested doing it when I bring him in.

Before we went to the vet, we decided to make a stop at Washington & Jefferson College, where I went to college.  I worked for the W&J Security when I was at school and most of the guys I worked with were there when we stopped in.  Ferdinand owned the office.  Everyone picked him up, but he fell right to sleep in Tanko's arms.  

Tanko's dog, Gretta, would be so jealous.

I put Ferdinand in his box that he likes to sit in when in the car, and we were on our way.  

When we got to the vet, he was out cold.  I carried him in and we were the only people in the parking lot and lobby.  We checked in.  The main nurse was very nice and loving him.  The older woman, who looked like made the appointments asked how old he was.  When I said that he was 7 weeks, she actually yelled at me, "That's illegal."  I said, "Excuse me?"  She said, "You aren't allowed to have a dog before it's 8 weeks old.  It's wrong."  The nurse quietly explained to me that in Pennsylvania, you aren't allowed to buy a dog before it's 8 weeks old, but in Ohio, there isn't a law.  I felt really awkward because I just got yelled at.  

After waiting 15 minutes, and the nurse checking on the doctor twice, we finally were in the room.  The doctor came in and she was talking so fast it was very hard to understand what she was saying.  She started to tell me how to care for a puppy.  I tried to get in that my mom used to breed dogs, and I know how to care for a puppy, but she kept talking and not letting me speak.  She then grabbed him to feel his insides and immediately said, "I hope you don't plan to breed him."  I asked, "Why?"  She said, "Well, his testicles haven't dropped yet.  And I doubt that they will.  The breeder may tell you that they have time to drop, but don't believe her.  If they do drop, they won't be that low.  Even if they don't drop, they can breed, but it passes that gene along, making it worse and worse.  I think they aren't going to drop.  If they don't, we will have to do surgery to find them and take them out or he will get cancer."

I ALMOST CRIED RIGHT THERE.  I could hardly get out the words, "Cancer?  He's only 7 weeks old!"  She said, "Yeah, I think we will have to get them out.  And you should call the breeder and see if you can get some of your money back, if you were planning on breeding him."  I was stunned to say the least.  I didn't know what else to say.  I managed to get out, "We were thinking about showing him."  She just scoffed.

Then she brought in another nurse and they microchipped him.  Throughout the entire check up, he was sleeping.  He squealed for a second when the needle went in and then went back to sleep.
She asked me if I had any questions and I was still stunned, so I said no.  

We paid the bill and I almost cried in the car.  I called my mom and she thought what the vet said was a bunch of BS.  She suggested I call the breeder and talk to her.  I called Derek and he looked on the internet and he found that balls can drop up to 6 months old.  If they don't drop by then, that's when you need to worry.

We emailed the breeder saying we needed to speak with her and she immediately called us and her first words were, "Is it about his nuts?"  She told us that all of Vito and Kali's puppies don't drop their balls until they were at least 10 weeks old.  She said that I could feel them if I touched his lower belly.  You could feel them.  So, I was all worked up over nothing.  She also said that the vet should not have given him a microchip yet because there is a chance that it can move in his body since he's so young.  She said, get a new vet.  

I messaged Erin Warner (who had referred us to Lynn) and asked her where she took Zamboni (a brother, from another litter of Vito and Kali) to the vet.  She suggested that we go to Point Breeze Veterinary Clinic in Pittsburgh.

She said that the vets office pet is a Bulldog named Tank.  He belongs to one of the doctors.  We figured that we weren't going to mess around anymore, I called them to schedule Ferdinand's 2nd round of shots, and they were sounded so nice. So, hopefully, when we go on March 15, they will be just as wonderful as Erin made them sound.  

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Diet, Clean Up and Being Home Alone

So, I had a friend private message me on Facebook about the post I made about the food.  I chose not to give Ferdinand food that has corn, corn products or soy in them because they can cause upset stomach and skin problems.  English Bulldogs are prone to itchy skin as is, and there was no sense in possibly adding to that.  My mom's dog, Lily, had skin issues, and after trying a ton of different foods and cortizone shots, she settled on the Diamond food brand.  

Here is a picture of the Puppy food that we are using.
I got this at the Tractor Supply Company in Washington, Pa.  I spent around $21 for an 18 pound bag.  My mom informed me that the puppy formulas are a lot more expensive than regular food, but the bigger adult brands are more reasonable.

Ferdinand had just gotten wormed and his other first set of shots a couple days before we got him, so his poop was a bit runny.  Lynn had been feeding him Pedigree with shredded chicken on the top after she heated it up.  Since we decided that we were going to only feed him dog food, no people food, we bought the Diamond.  Since he wasn't just used to regular dog food, we added a little water to his food to soften it up a bit.  As the days have gone by, we had used less and less water, until, finally, we decided not to add water at all.  His poop is now mostly normal.  

At night, we move his bed in our room so that we can hear him if he decides to wake up and needs let out.  His first night, he slept the whole night through.  The last few nights, he's woken Derek up at 2:00am and 4:00am.  I say it's better to be woken up than have pee to clean up.

On Monday, only his second full day with us, I had a doctor's appointment, so I had no choice but to leave him home.  I was gone for about 2 hours and when I got home, he hadn't had one accident, although he did flip his food and water bowls.  I was okay with that.

Here is a great picture of him playing with all of his toys:

Yesterday was my first day at the office.  I came home at noon to check on him, and found a tiny accident in his playpen.  He only peed, but I wasn't mad because he is still only 6 weeks old and that was his first time being home alone for a long period of time.  I left the house to go back to the office around 12:45 and came home at 5:15pm.  He did not have any accidents.  I was so proud.

Here's a picture of him in his "big boy" bowls:

This is a picture of him and his Daddy working on the

Today, I came home at 11:45am and I opened the door to Ferdinand running at me.  He had broke out of his cage.  We have an running water bowl for the cats that allows fresh water to run constantly.  I think he drank about half of that water.  I found a little bit of pee in the hallway, but other than that, the house was fine.  I left the house at around 12:30 and didn't get home until almost 6:00pm.  He didn't have any accidents.  I was really surprised.

He's done great when we have to leave him in the day time.  Instead of using a crate, my mom bought us a playpen that can be made into any shape.  We have it in a rectangle shape so he can run around in the kitchen.  Here's a picture of his playpen.

When he does have an accident (which so far has only been a small amount of pee) we use this:

It works great to clean pee and eliminate the smell off of the linoleum, hardwood floors and carpets.  We got it at Petsmart, but I bet you can get it anywhere.  You only need a little will go a long way.

So far it's been great.  Finally, both cats are upstairs and getting used to him.  Dexter allows Ferdinand to chase him all around and doesn't mind being headbutted or nipped at.  Doakes, however, still seems to be a little leery of Ferdinand.  He will at least now, come upstairs, eat, and be in the same room as him without hissing like crazy.  Hopefully, things will continue to run smoothly.

On a final note, we are taking Ferdinand to get his second set of shots tomorrow as well as getting him microchipped.  We haven't gotten insurance for him yet, if anyone knows or can recommend good pet insurance, let us know.  You can email me at 

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Ferdinand's first day at HOME!

We were warned that Ferdinand might cry through the night and have a tough time sleeping or even have an accident.  We did not have that problem at all!  He didn't cry one time!  We took his bed into our room and set it at the foot of our bed.  He had already been asleep so that transition was easy.  As I laid in bed, I watched Dexter ease her way up to him and start to reach her paw out to touch him, then she'd bring it back.  She'd reach her paw out again further, then bring it back.  Finally, she scooted her butt closer and barley touched him, then took off running. She spent most of the night watching him.  Doakes on the other hand, hates Ferdinand.  She won't even come upstairs to get her food.  We figure that when she gets hungry she will come up.  

My parents decided they were going to stop up to check out Ferdinand and pick Gabby up.  My parents had always wanted a bulldog but never got one.  After Daisy had died, they waited a few years and got Lily.

That's Lily like a year ago.

Anyways, they didn't bring her up cause she is pretty huge and can get rowdy and we didn't want Ferdinand to be overwhelmed.  

Here's the pics of my mom and dad getting to hang out with Ferdinand.

Dad loves giving him kisses.

He just fell asleep on Dad like that.

My mom didn't want to let him go!

Throughout the day, Ferdinand found his way to my lap.
I guess he loves sleeping like this.

This is face.  He loves sleeping upside down.

He spent the entire day playing, eating and sleeping.  What a life?!?!

So, all in all, Ferdinand has had a ton of fun meeting people.  He gets a huge kick out of seeing new people, smelling new people and falling asleep wherever he can.

Hopefully, the cats will warm up to him and potty training keeps going well.  So far, no accidents yet!

Ferdinand is HOME!

So, we were told that we could bring Ferdinand home when he reached 5 pounds.  After waiting for weeks for him, Lynn messaged me on Facebook to say that she was taking him to the doctor on Friday, February 17, to get him his shots and we could pick him up Saturday, February 18!  Derek and I couldn't believe that the time was now.

We left our house at 11:00 am to get to Lynn's by 1:00 pm.  Lynn lives in Cambridge, Ohio.  We live in Finleyville, Pennsylvania.  It took us about 1 hour and 45 minutes to get there.  And the last 5 miles seemed to be the longest. 

When we got to Lynn's house we were so excited.  We just wanted to get Ferdinand right then and there.  Luckily, Lynn made us do the paper work that needed done and went over the information that she had in a Puppy Folder.  If she wouldn't have done that first, we probably wouldn't have heard anything she said because we were so excited for Ferdinand.  

The last thing we had to do before getting Ferdinand was to pay Lynn.  Her original charge was $1900 (for the males, females were $2000).  We had put a deposit of $300 previously, so we paid her the remaining $1600 and went down to get Ferd.  

Before we could even get to the pups, we were greeted and had to give some love to Vito (his dad), Kali (his mom), and Chrissy (Kali's mom).

Close up of Vito

Vito and Kali were happy to see us.

He was in with all his brothers and sisters.  They were all sleeping on top of each other and as soon as we opened the door, they were all ready to play.  Here's a picture of a few of his brothers and sisters.

They all wanted us to pick them up and play with them, but it was hard to focus on so much cuteness.  We just wanted to focus on Ferdinand.

Lynn took Ferdinand out and he had gotten so much bigger than what we had expected.  She wanted to weigh him and clip his toenails before we took him home.  Here's a picture of him being weighed.  6 pounds 15 ounces....he might weigh a bit more, but he didn't really want to squeeze his rolls into the container.

After the weigh in and nail clipping, he was ours.  Here are a bunch of pictures we took after he became, our, Ferdinand Rocco.

He was talking to his Daddy!

He's Daddy's little man!

Mommy is holding him while he's getting his nails clipped.

Getting a good view of Ferdinand.

Ferdinand and Mommy!

A new addition to the Rocco Family!

Taking his final bathroom break before the long trip home!

Checking out his spotting.

He's checking under the steps...looking for trouble.

After his bathroom break, we got in the car and went on our merry way.  I was worried he wouldn't do well in the car or that we would need to stop a lot on the way to let him pee.  We didn't stop once.  He made it the whole way from Cambridge to Washington, PA without being a problem at all.  Here are some pictures from the car trip.

We thought we would bring something from home to make him feel comfortable for the car ride.  He LOVED his frog!

He loves chewing on the frogs eye!

He is just a little king with his Aunt Gabby.

He is just a relaxed fool.

He's showing off his chin.

He's chewing on Gabby's fingers.

Look at those looks!

I think Gabby enjoys Ferdinand and Ferdinand enjoys Gabby.

He was out cold. 

He was sooo sleepy.

He slept like this for about 45 minutes.

How is that comfortable?

He finally tired out on his favorite frog.

We let him pee and poop at the little grassy area in front of the store and he pooped twice and peed. 
We stopped at PetSmart to get some toys and Ferdinand was welcomed with open arms by Rottweilers, Pit Bulls and "Craigslist" dogs.  

We also stopped at Tractor Farm Supply to get him the Diamond Puppy food.  We didn't want to give him anything else that had corn or soy in it because the English Bulldogs get itchy skin easily.  

When we got him home for the first time, we walked him around the yard to get used to the smells and so he could go the bathroom.

  Ferdinand didn't want to go the bathroom, but we think it could have been because the grass was so cold.

We tried to get him to go to the bathroom every 30 minutes and he didn't go until almost 10:00pm.  

This was Ferdinand at the end of the night!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Ferdinand is a month old!

Still not home with us yet, Lynn sent us Valentine's pictures and let us know that Ferdinand is now 3 pounds 13.5 ounces!  He will be ready to come home by either the weekend of February 18 or when he is 5 pounds!  We are practically counting down the days.