Friday, April 30, 2010

Social Skills are Overrated

Raleigh was “improperly socialized.” I know this because several experts told me. The exact details of his upbringing remain a mystery but I have deduced the following from Raleigh’s behavior.
Raleigh was raised in a barn where he lived quite happily with his birth mother and littermates. The puppies spent their days doing puppy things with no bothersome interference by humans. Except for one hour every day when Breeder Mom instructed her young sons, “Go socialize the puppies or I’ll make you do your homework.” Young sons, hands sticky with the remnants of peanut-butter sandwich, let the puppies out of the barn into the back yard. The puppies spent their social hour chewing on the small boy’s sweaty socks. Apparently Breeder Mom prohibited the wearing of socks while jumping on the trampoline. This much, at least, was substantiated by a video Breeder Mom sent to me just before I drove all the way to Nacogdoches in a stupefying cloud of “puppy love.”

Puppy books tell of an all important four-week developmental window of socialization when a puppy will learn all that he needs to navigate his world as a polite citizen. Raleigh spent these four weeks barking, chasing and rolling around in a horse stable with his maladjusted siblings.

On the very day his developmental window slammed shut, Breeder Mom bathed and trimmed Raleigh and loaded him in her SUV. She drove him to the Texas/Louisiana border to meet his new mother, me.

I have read at least a dozen books about puppies. I noticed right away that Raleigh would not look me in the eye and cringed when I reached for him. When clipped on the end of a leash Raleigh sat his furry butt down and refused to budge one inch. These were very bad signs. Breeder Mom chattered away happily during the entire transaction, as she had received payment for Raleigh via PayPal days earlier.
Despite enough red flags to populate a Soviet parade I snatched Raleigh up and drove home to Houston with him because he was – amazingly – even more adorable in real life then in his picture.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Dog Friendly Resaurants?

Like all good city dwellers, Raleigh loves to dine out. Here we are enjoying low-fat frozen yoghurt with our friend Lisa in First Colony Town Square.
We are always on the lookout for dog friendly places to visit.
We found a list of restaurants on These outdoor restaurants might be good places to visit with your dog. As Raleigh and I visit them personally, we'll let you know how it turns out.

Outdoor Restaurants
Barnaby's -5750 Woodway Houston
Beaver's Icehouse -2310 Decatur Street Houston
Becks Prime -2615 Augusta Drive Houston
Bistro Provence -13616 Memorial Houston
Boondoggle's Pub and Pizzeria -4106 Nasa Rd Houston
Cafe Toulouse -5750 Woodway Houston
Chatter's Cafe and Bistro -140 S Heights Blvd Houston
Chipotle - Greenway Plaza -3819 Richmond Avenue Houston
Chipotle - Katy -1260 Fry Road Houston
Chipotle - Louetta Road -10905 Louetta Road Houston
Chipotle - Med Center -6600 Fannin Street Houston
Chipotle - Mid-Westheimer -8401 Westheimer Road, Bldg. A, Suite 100 Houston
Chipotle - NW Marketplace -13768 NW Freeway Houston
Chipotle - Reliant Park -8505 S Main Street/H 90 Houston
Chipotle - Richmond & Sage -5176 Richmond Avenue Houston
Chipotle - Royal Oaks -11805 Westheimer Houston
Chipotle - Theater District -909 Texas Avenue Houston
Chipotle - Village Place -5600 Kirby #N-1 Houston
Chipotle - Willowbrook -7600 FM 1960 Road W Houston
Collin's Italian Restaurant -2400 Times Blvd Houston
Fox and Hound English Pub and Grille -11470 Westheimer Road Houston
Fuzzy's Pizza Italian and Sports Cafe -823 Antoine Dr Houston
Gingerman's -5607 Morningside Dr Houston
Guerin's Bistro -11920 Westheimer Houston
Helios -411 Westiemer Houston
Hickory Hollow BBQ -101 Heights Blvd Houston
Jason's Deli -901 McKinney St Houston
Jason's Deli -23530 University Blvd Houston
Jason's Deli -5860 Westheimer Road Houston
King Biscuit Patio Cafe -1606 White Oak Drive Houston
McCormick and Schmick's Seafood Restaurant -1151 Uptown Park Blvd. Houston
Mission Burritos -2245 West Alabama St. Houston
Panera Bread Bakery and Cafe -12220 Farm Road 1960 Houston
Paulie's -2617 West Holcombe Houston
The Ginger Man Pub -5607 Morningside Houston
The Red Lion -2316 S Shephard Drive Houston
The Tasting Room Lounge -114 Gray Street Houston
Tila's Restaurant and Bar -1111 S Shepard Dr Houston
West Alabama Icehouse -1919 West Alamaba Houston
Z Pizza -4010 Bissonnet St Houston
Ziggy's Healthy Grill -2202 W Alabama (at Greenbriar) Houston
Chipotle - Deerbrook -10035 FM 1960 Bypass W, Suite F-2 Humble
Chipotle - Pasadena -5759 Fairmont Parkway Pasadena
Anna Belle's -16145 City Walk Sugar Land