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Pico had a great time at the beach and is just pooped out from all the activity and poor eating. I can feel that he's lost some weight because he was so distracted by all the activity around him last week. I tried to give him frequent snacks to compensate but that just unbalanced his diet I'm afraid.

He did jump into the surf one time when we went to the Intracoastal waterway where it was shallow and gentle. He actually started swimming when he got in deep enough but then seemed to realize what was happening and turned around a ran out. After that, whenever I tried to coax him back in with me, he'd spin in a circle and take off running back to the umbrellas where everyone else was sitting in beach chairs and just tear around like crazy, making everyone laugh.

He also had a tough time going potty in the sand because he is grass trained. He'd walk and walk and walk looking for a tuft of grass and finally, when he just couldn't hold it anymore, he'd go. I always picked up the poop in a plastic bag and just kicked sand over the pee.

I used a oil-free spray on sunscreen that I just spritzed all over him after covering his eyes. I made sure to get his tummy thoroughly covered, which made him wiggle. He loved visiting other beach goers who had set up nearby and they were unconditionally delighted to have him come over. I met numerous people who said "My mother-in-law has a Maltese" or "my neighbor has a Maltese". Everyone was enchanted with him.

He had his own bottle of water and drinks out of the cap or out of my hand so keeping him hydrated was not a problem. I learned to bathe him in the shower before I showered by holding him in my arms and bathing one side then switching him to the other arm and bathing his other side. I held him up Lion King style to rinse his tummy and put the conditioner on the same way I shampood him. That was the only way to get the sand and salt off of him. Plain water rinsing didn't do it so he got 3 showers that week.

Because my family was spread out in three houses, we did a LOT of walking plus each house is built one story off the ground and are two story houses so there were LOTS of stairs and ups and downs. I mostly carried him because that would have been way too much walking for him. As it was he was up and down the stairs in our house because he learned the 3 teenage girls left lots of tissues in their bathroom wastebasket! :D

I met several people in the Airport terminal who lurk on Spoiled Maltese and I encouraged them to post. One lady recognized "Pico's Parent" when I told her about it. Cool.

I was even able to take him out of his carrier on the plane for most of the trip. He stayed sprawled out in my lap asleep most of the time and on one leg the attendant didn't even notice him until her fourth trip by when she did a double-take to look at him closer but didn't say a word. Many people told me he was very well behaved and wished they could take their dog with them but that they didn't dare. I was so proud of him.

All in all it was a great trip even though it was like having a small child on vacation where you had to be aware of them at all times and make sure someone was watching him, make sure he got sunscreened and was kept hydrated. But we are already planning Reunion 2006 and since Pico is part of the family, he'll be going too!
 

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Welcome back Pamela and Pico! We sure missed you both


Sounds like you had a great time. What airline did you fly? Some details on your experiences about that would be very helpful as I am thinking of flying with Tiki some time this year.

I am glad Pico had a good time also. I know what you mean about coaxing them to eat when away from home. We had the same problem last spring when we took him on a driving vacation to Michigan.

I would love to see some pictures of Pico on the beach!

Judi
 

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Welcome back Pico's Parent.....I too would love to see pictures... :D
 

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that sounds totally awesome!!! gosh, i totally cant wait till next year, we're planning on going to Rhode Island for 3-4 days. I really really want to take the dogs. its horrible though because they'd want to put gruffi in the cargo area
i even pleaded to them saying that i'd buy another seat. ugh!! anyway, we checked companion airlines, but someone mentioned a jet---it's around $5,000 an HOUR!!!! you get catering and there's a bathroom on board---but its waay expensive.

anyway, im glad you're back. hopefully the people you met join!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Tikis Mom,

We flew American from San Antonio to Dallas, changed planes in Dallas and flew to Raleigh where I rented a car for the drive to Topsail.

It costs $40 each leg to bring Pico on board in his soft side carrier and he is placed underneath the seat in front of me. My trip ran $160 for him. Plus another $46 from my vet for a Health Certificate that no one EVER asks for or looks at, but the one time I don't have it they will and our trip won't happen.

I usually take Pico out of the carrier once we reach the gate so he can walk around (leashed) a bit and put him back in (after taking his harness off) only when my boarding group is called. As I board the plane I hold the carrier in front of me almost chest level so the attendants can see him. This is how I judge how receptive they might be to me later taking him out to sleep on my lap. If their eyes glaze over and they look away, I'm out of luck, but usually their eyes light up and they want me to stop so they can look and talk with him. Bingo!

On a one hour flight, I don't take him out. He knows the drill by now and he no longer yips or whines when he's on the plane. But on the 2 1/2 hour leg to Raleigh I took him out the last hour and he spent 5-10 minutes exploring my seat-mate (whom I had discussed this with previously) and my granddaughter's lap before returning to me and flopping down for a long nap.

The attendants walked by multiple times before even noticing him. He probably looked like a white sweater crumpled into my lap. They never said a word and that is likely due to the fact that he was so deeply asleep.

When the announcement to put seat backs up prior to landing comes on, I replace him in his carrier for landing and leave him there until we get to car rental place where I take him out to pee (putting his harness back on)before getting our car.

Between flights I found a grassy area in the lower arrival level at DFW and took him out to pee there, also. Those grassy areas are tiny and few and far between but now that I know where they are it only takes a few minutes to exit, let him pee and re-enter through security.

At security, you have to take him out of the carrier (suggest taking his harness off prior to avoid setting off alarm) and put the carrier through the luggage scanner but you carry him in your arms through the people scanner. I travel with his carrier and one travel bag for simplicity. I also make sure the shoes I am wearing have no metal in them so I don't have to take them off and that my clothing and jewelry is metal free also. It just makes the whole process of traveling with a pet simpler if you don't have to be screened separately or go through several times after taking off clothing, etc. We just breeze through now that I've learned these things.

Do get your baby accustomed to the carrier, if you can, prior to your trip. Pico would claw at the mesh to get out on our initial shopping trips in the car when I was trying to accustom him to it and it was really not until he had taken a couple of plane trips that he accepted the routine and now he just settles himself down for the ride. He is usually quiet while we are in line to check luggage, etc. but in Raleigh there was a large crated dog in line who barked and that started Pico barking. It was actually quite funny because the other dog had this huge deep bark and there was Pico arguing with his little yiping.

The biggest issue I have with traveling with Pico is making sure he eats properly. It is easy to get caught up in socializing and activities and not realize your picky eater hasn't eaten much that day. I also keep a bottle of water for him with me at all times and offer him some from the cap or my hand frequently. He doesn't always drink it but this way I'm confident he's being hydrated. I also found my day revolves around whether he has pooped or not.
It is such a relief when he does because then I don't have to be concerned about the where and when.

Hope all this info helps you enjoy your trip with your furbaby. I know I just loved having Pico with me and would have missed him terribly had I left him behind with my husband.
 

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Pamela,
Thanks for all the great info! I often use the bag to take Tiki places, but I will have to do some "bag training" before expecting him to sit still for more than an hour.

Judi
 

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Discussion Starter #11
My brother took 99% of the videos and photos on this trip and burned 2 cd's and a DVD for each family before we departed. However, I left mine at my brother-in-law's house and am waiting for them to be mailed to me. If there are any of Pico on the beach, I'll post a couple.

I sure missed my SM friends! I was teased somewhat unmercifully about having Pico velcro'd to me and my baby brother wouldn't touch him for several days because he was afraid he'd be too rough like he is with his dogs. Before long, however, Pico was leaping into his lap and he was loving it. :lol:

But there's nothing like my simpatico spoiled maltese buddies!
 

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LOL. honestly, i think it would be an awesome idea to have some "maltese Party". like in that adoption site. where all of us get together (maybe somewhere in the middle states....but honestly--California has awesome weather). and then we can take pics of all our malts together. and then do like crafts and whatever fun stuff that dog camps do. i have been wanting to go to www.campw.com for a while---but i cant take that many days off. lol.
 

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that would seriously be a very useful thing to learn. my brothers client knits and made a sweater for my brothers kid and my sisters dog, ellie. lol. it was really cute. they were matching pink sweaters. lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I love the idea of a Malt party......I would travel 45 minutes to one. Nichole, I just can't imagine ANY Maltese owners not welcoming you warmly into their group. So next time, go!

The last time Pico and I went to Florida we spent a day with his bio mom, brother, sister and nephew and the nephews mom. 6 Malts in one place and what a hoot that was. Little furbabies all OVER the place! It is so much fun.
 

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It was fun to read about your and Pico's adventures at the beach! It was also very informative as I live about 10 minutes away from the beach and plan to take Zoe there as soon as I can after I get her (and she has all of her shots and everything).
I had never thought of spray-on oil-free sun screen but it is such a good idea!
Glad you both had a good time
 
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