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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 5:37 pm 
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Chip Strong
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I use 6 ft leashes for my dogs - we also like the easy walk front hook harnesses and have been experimenting with the gentle leader head collar with pretty good results. I have two 50 lb dogs. I can control them fine until STUPID ANNOYING IDIOTS let their dogs run free in my neighborhood and their free dogs runs circles around me and my dogs and follow us all the way down the forking street, making my dogs go nuts and tying us all up in leashes until we can get away from annoying free roaming dogs. UGH. Stressful. Leash laws are great - wish they could actually be enforced. Any ideas on that?

Oh yeah and flexi leashes suck.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 6:13 pm 
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erynne936 wrote:
STUPID ANNOYING IDIOTS let their dogs run free .

cheezus, i am trying to train the puppy to run alongside the bike (like the whippet does) and he was doing just fine until there was a roaming pack of dogs. Totally not the roaming-pack-of-wild-dogs-type-neighborhood either-- pet dogs that people just let out to "go explore". We went fast to get out of there and passed a mailman- i warned him, and he was not a happy camper (they don't use pepper spray here, and they get bitten constantly).

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 9:05 pm 
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Thank you so much for the walking advice. RC, I will look into Patricia McConnell's book, I have one of her other ones. I agree, I think the stimulation is too much and they need more frequent, shorter walks in less busy areas.

melomeals wrote:

Also, do you do leadership training with your dogs? Nothing Is Free? http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/nothingfree.htm

Do you control the door? Do they have to be calm and respectful before they leave the house or do you guys charge out of the house with dogs who are already in an excited state?


We do try to do the Nothing is Free type of training, but sometimes get lazy. It shows lately, as their listening is getting worse. I've been thinking we need to get more serious. We took the two of them, along with our older dog, to a new vet together last week and it was horrible. They didn't listen at all. We rarely take them all out at the same time. But when we had to leave the male there for xrays (poor thing has hip dysplasia and knees that pop out of joint), the techs said he acted great and was even fine around other dogs, so I think we must be the problem. A lack of respect or something.

We make them sit and wait before they go out, but I wouldn't exactly call them calm and respectful. It's more like sitting and anxiously waiting for the word to move. I don't know how to make their brains calm down.

Dogs roaming the streets!! A huge pet peeve. Our next door neighbor lets her tiny little guy walk around the neighborhood all the time and I've tried to be nice about it by saying things like, "aren't you afraid he might meet an aggressive dog (or car!)?" but she's a stubborn, old Italian lady and there is no convincing her. It's weird because she's afraid of our dogs, so you'd think she wouldn't want her precious little one to get snacked on! My older dog and I were attacked by a smallish dog over the summer, so I'm very wary of strange dogs rolling up on us. For their safety and ours.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 9:46 pm 
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I think the whole training thing is just a lot of hard work! I know for us, sharing custody with my X.. I feel like it's always one step forward, two steps back. At every single walk with J, I am seriously frustrated the first 5 minutes or so while I have to do the STOP and wait for her to relax and then her brain kicks in and she remembers ..

As far as the door.. start with taking them out to potty and making them totally relax. Or should I say, waiting for them to totally relax.... you can tell.. they will sigh, shake it it out whatever.. but once their energy shifts, then they get to go out.. and when you start the walk that way.. it is SOOO much easier to deal with.

I hear you about idiot people who let their dogs run free. It drives me CRAZY. The people who live accross from my X NEVER leash their dog and it runs around all the time. They KNOW I have Pit Bull who is NOT friendly with other dogs... yet they still think it's OK to let their dog run up to me.. I hate that I have to muzzle MY dog because of idiots. That I do this for THEIR dogs protection... but otherwise, it is too stressful for me to walk my dog and she picks up on that and acts so much worse.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 11:41 pm 
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erynne936 wrote:
Leash laws are great - wish they could actually be enforced. Any ideas on that?

Well it depends on how good your local animal control force is. Police definitely don't give a crepe about the "dog laws" so it's really up to animal control, and some officers are better than others. Even when an officer does want to enforce the leash law, it can be difficult. We get complaints of loose dogs all the time, but by the time the ACO gets there, the dog will be gone. If no one knows the name and/or address of the offender, there's no way to follow up. But if we get a bunch of reports on the same area, the ACO adds it to her list of places to cruise through regularly to try to catch people in the act.

The other problem is there's usually just a small fine for breaking the law. A lot of times people won't even pay the fine and will just continue to let their dogs off leash. Taking people to court takes a lot of time away from the job, so it doesn't happen until people accrue a certain amount of unpaid fines (Usually several hundred dollars. One person in my town had over a thousand dollars in unpaid leash and license law citations!). The best bet is to report it every single time you see a dog loose, and maybe they can be caught. Or if you know the address of the people, that's even better. And if you're comfortable, you can inform people you see with out of control off-leash dogs that there is a leash law, and that you will be reporting any loose dogs you see.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2011 12:27 am 
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ilovemountains wrote:
I was going to start a new thread, but maybe my question will fit in here. I need advice on leash walking. The two pups in my avatar are now full grown akitas (or possibly akita mixes, we're not sure). They're small for akitas, but they pull like mad. We use a gentle leader on the female and a front clip harness on the male, both with a four or six foot leash. We took them to dog training classes as puppies and taught them to walk pretty well with treats as rewards and stopping when they pulled, but they've both gotten so much worse in the past few months. It started when they were right around a year old and now they're a year and four months. The female walks pretty well, but she gets really nervous and scared of loud noises/trucks etc. and will start pulling like mad. Nothing seems to help. She doesn't want food, even high value food. We've tried walking her on less busy streets, but she doesn't seem to be improving much. The male is okay (doesn't get scared/nervous), but he's crazy about other dogs. As soon as he sees one, he pulls and jumps around like an idiot. I don't know if he wants to kill them or love them, but his behavior is highly inappropriate. He gets excited walking by people to, but to a much lesser extent. He also doesn't seem to care about food when this happens either.

Please tell me there is something I can do about this or that it will go away as they get older or that there is some sort of magical collar/leash combo that will answer all my prayers?


Leslie McDevitt's book is written for reactive agility dog owners/owners who want their dogs to listen while off-leash, but I used the book for my dog/fast moving objects/noise reactive dog and it really worked wonders. There are a lot of good training tips/guidelines for training a dog who really just can't focus in stimulating environments.

Good luck!

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 1:02 pm 
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I could use some advice if anybody has some. We've adopted a three-year old Chihuahua. I think he is leash-trained because he is super once he gets on the leash. However, getting him on the leash is an major ordeal. He is very afraid of somebody reaching around his back. It takes 15 minutes or so sometimes to get him on the leash and I've got a gash on each thigh where he scratched me when I was trying to take it off. We're hooking it to a harness right now. As soon as the leash is on, he calms down. How can we make this easier? Should we be giving him treats? If we can't walk him, then it's hard to figure out how he can stay with us. I'm waking up an hour earlier each day just so I can get to work on time -- I can't do this for years.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 6:24 pm 
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janejellyroll wrote:
I could use some advice if anybody has some. We've adopted a three-year old Chihuahua. I think he is leash-trained because he is super once he gets on the leash. However, getting him on the leash is an major ordeal. He is very afraid of somebody reaching around his back. It takes 15 minutes or so sometimes to get him on the leash and I've got a gash on each thigh where he scratched me when I was trying to take it off. We're hooking it to a harness right now. As soon as the leash is on, he calms down. How can we make this easier? Should we be giving him treats? If we can't walk him, then it's hard to figure out how he can stay with us. I'm waking up an hour earlier each day just so I can get to work on time -- I can't do this for years.


Orion used to flinch whenever I moved a hand towards him, and we fixed this accidentally. We generally train with positive reinforcement (treats), in particular for the sit command, and we actually make him sit before getting any treats or meals. So his sit is super strongly reinforced because that's how he behaves every time good things happen.
Now I make him sit when I clip the leash on, and no problem! I suggest you take it easy at first and respect your dog's fear threshold (don't make him endure more than he can take, whenever realistically doable), and generally associate the different aspects of the leash clipping experience with positive things.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 6:59 pm 
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raspberrycomplaint wrote:
erynne936 wrote:
Leash laws are great - wish they could actually be enforced. Any ideas on that?

Well it depends on how good your local animal control force is. Police definitely don't give a crepe about the "dog laws" so it's really up to animal control, and some officers are better than others. Even when an officer does want to enforce the leash law, it can be difficult. We get complaints of loose dogs all the time, but by the time the ACO gets there, the dog will be gone. If no one knows the name and/or address of the offender, there's no way to follow up. But if we get a bunch of reports on the same area, the ACO adds it to her list of places to cruise through regularly to try to catch people in the act.

The other problem is there's usually just a small fine for breaking the law. A lot of times people won't even pay the fine and will just continue to let their dogs off leash. Taking people to court takes a lot of time away from the job, so it doesn't happen until people accrue a certain amount of unpaid fines (Usually several hundred dollars. One person in my town had over a thousand dollars in unpaid leash and license law citations!). The best bet is to report it every single time you see a dog loose, and maybe they can be caught. Or if you know the address of the people, that's even better. And if you're comfortable, you can inform people you see with out of control off-leash dogs that there is a leash law, and that you will be reporting any loose dogs you see.


This is what happened to the people whose loose dog killed Bonny - they got a fine for the dog not being on a leash. I was also told that I could file a police report and get them to pay me for basically 'destroyed property', depending on how much I had paid for her. Sigh.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 11:08 pm 
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mrsbadmouth wrote:
I was also told that I could file a police report and get them to pay me for basically 'destroyed property', depending on how much I had paid for her. Sigh.

Oh my god, that is horrible. People just don't get it.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 11:51 pm 
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raspberrycomplaint wrote:
ilovemountains wrote:
Please tell me there is something I can do about this or that it will go away as they get older or that there is some sort of magical collar/leash combo that will answer all my prayers?

Oh man, I wish there was a magical leash that would solve all problems. But until that's invented, you'll just have to work on training.

For my dog, there WAS a magical leash! Well, harness actually. The front leading harness that pulls from the chest... I read that it helps dogs not to pull and so I bought it, thinking I'd also have to do a bunch of training to get her to stop pulling/lunging as well. But, I put it on her, and instantly she is like a different dog on walks! I didn't have to do any training, she now walks on a loosh leash and only lunges if there's something extremely tempting, like another dog being crazy/barky... rather than before even a bird or what-have-you in the distance would do it. Oh and the harness we used before was the one that clips on her back, and she was a terrible puller, even though she's only 15lbs, I basically had to run, arm outstretched behind her on walks.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:20 pm 
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OMG I just took Penny for her first walk with the easy walk front leading harness, and it was the best thing ever. I need to adjust it a teeny bit more, but we actually walked together. It was beautiful. Also if anyone wants a gently used gentle leader head collar let me know. I think it's size large and it's pink.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 5:12 pm 
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what a cool looking harness!!!!
I have had to move the whippet to a harness (it looks like a mobius, sort of, it goes around her "armpits" and nowhere near her neck. As she's getting older walking near traffic is really freaking her out and we had a terrifying moment where she freaked when a bus went past and she slipped her collar and almost took off (I was able to grab her scruff, which was almost even worse). I realized a collar wasn't going to work anymore, and the harness makes me feel better.
We moved to a gentle-leader/halti type thing for the puppy (who now is a monster) and it was an amazing, amazing change. He went from a puller to walking next to me, easy as pie.

I am so glad we have so much variety in leashes/leads/harnesses, etc!

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 7:27 pm 
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I have to buy another harness for Riley. He's already destroyed a gentle leader and a harness. He really just wants to be left alone to run as fast as he can on his three wee legs.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 9:31 am 
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Bump bump bump!

So now that we've added Harley to the mix, and she needs to be walked (Not surprisingly we kind of stopped walking Chester after Bonny), I often walk all three dogs. Fawkes loves it, sometimes Chester doesn't come but he's still kind of limpy so he walks pretty slow.

My father-in-law walks his dogs twice a day, because they aren't house broken at all, on retractable leashes. They are both about 25 pounds, one is a slow, shy walker so her pulling isn't really an issue.

Sometimes he decides that Harley should go for a walk too, but instead of grabbing her leash, he puts her on an extra retractable. So he has three of those handles, plus picking up poop. Harley is a pretty good dog, but sometimes we walk past a yard with a dog or she sees a cat and as long as I see what she's looking at before she goes crazy, I can just tighten up the leash to remind her that she can't run, and she behaves. And if she sees something I don't, even though she's 50 pounds, the leash is looped over my wrist and my other hand is always ready to grab hold so she can't pull me out of my shoes or anything.

This morning, I tried to get her to come in while the other two were waiting for their walk and Frank said, "I'll take her with me." And when I said i'd rather not because of the retractables, he practically started 'la la la'ing at me. I googled and found plenty of info from bloggers about the dangers, but I was wondering if there's an official dog/pet society that has info about it for me to print out?

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 7:26 pm 
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I've never heard of any society taking a stance against flexi-leads, but I know tons of trainers who hate them. So you may be able to find articles by certified trainers and maybe that would carry some weight?

I was just thinking about the whole flexi-lead thing yesterday. I was walking Sable on leash around a local pond. We ran into 2 other dogs there. The first dog was a small terrier on a flexi-lead. The woman said "Hi" as we approached, but didn't say anything beyond that. Luckily I am always overly cautious when passing other dogs, so I kept Sable right at my side. As soon as we got within a few feet, the terrier started lunging at Sable, barking and growling. Of course the woman had NO control over the dog with the flexi, and it took her several moments to drag her dog away. The second dog we passed was a husky on an Easy-walk harness with a regular leash. As we approached, the walker said "My dog is nervous, so I'm going to run ahead." Because she had warned me, I was able to make sure my dog was well off to the side, and because the woman had her dog on a regular short lead and no-pull harness, she was able to keep her dog at her side as they jogged passed us. There was such a huge difference. Two reactive dogs. One was able to go past us without incident, and the other was able to react and lunge at us, which will just make that behaviour more ingrained.

Also! My friend with the untrained, hyper lab still walks her dog on a flexi. The last time I saw the dog, she ran and hit the end of the leash and something inside snapped. So the lead was fully pulled out to 16 feet or whatever, and it could no longer retract. It was a really scary few minutes until my friend was able to catch the dog and grab her collar. If that had happened near a road, the dog could have easily run into traffic. I just don't retractable leashes AT ALL.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 5:52 am 
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i still hate flexileads!!!!!

also, can i take this time to say: when my dog(s) and i come up on someone with an unbalanced dog that is going nuts to try to get at us, and my shepherd/pittie looks at me with that "can i eat them, please, mama?" look, i distract them and take off running (or sprint, if we're already jogging). Disaster averted. So WHY does the person with the hysterical yapping dog get angry and yell that my running makes her (its usually a her) dog crazy? snarl

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 12:26 pm 
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ugh i hate flexi leashes. they make me SO NERVOUS.

we bought one for one single purpose and that's all we use it for.
we have an insanely dog reactive dog but on occasion we will take him to a local pond where dogs can swim and we go find a secret hidey spot away from the beach and let him go in the water and we use the flexi leash then and thats it. only because then he can wander further into the water.

sometimes i feel like a flexi leash is just an excuse for people who cant be bothered to train their dogs to let their dogs be more undisciplined. i seem to see TONS of small dogs on flexi leashes who are just terrible.

those leashes make me so nervous because i know with my own dog, if he was on a flexi leash and got to the end of it and freaked out and went bananas he could easily snap that leash or break it somehow and basically free himself to wreak all sorts of havoc.

we take SO MUCH precaution with the way he leash up both our dogs, even the non-reactive one we are careful with. so it drives me completely insane when other people dont take the same care with their dogs.
we had to stop walking at one particular place because too many people let their dogs off leash and would just be like "oh he's friendly" and the dog would go up to my unfriendly dog and MY dog would react which is a bad behavior to practice then the other dog would react because my dog is reacting and then general chaos ensues. JUST KEEP YOUR DAMN DOG ON THE LEASH!!!! THERE ARE LEASH LAWS!!!

i think the flexi leads are bad because it's basically saying to the dog "here do whatever you want, i dont care if you walk nicely" and like someone already said it teaches them to pull.

not saying that every person who uses a flexi leash is bad or a bad dog owner, it just seems you run across a lot of people who have no control over their dog and are using a crappy leash on top of that.

ugh.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 12:29 pm 
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torque wrote:
So WHY does the person with the hysterical yapping dog get angry and yell that my running makes her (its usually a her) dog crazy? snarl


my reactive dog does not like runners. the fast movement really sets him off. but guess what it's NOT the runner's problem. it's MY problem to deal with MY dog and make sure the runner is safe from my dog. that's insane that someone would yell at you for running and also getting out of what could be a bad situation. it's obviously their own fault for having a crazy dog and then not dealing with the situation properly.

people need to take responsibility for how their dogs behave.
i am so super vigilant with mine because i know he has issues.

ugh ugh ugh.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 1:18 pm 
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Yeah, Chester minds his own business on walks unless a kid approaches or a runner goes by, we don't get to the park anymore because he can't walk that far. I still have Fawkes on the harness and super short leash they gave me at the pound, I was thinking about getting him a longer leash so he can easily match Harley, but he is such a reactive little shitface that three feet is more than enough.

Flexi leashes are such a pain, I mentioned this further up but I stopped using them because I had trouble not dropping them, but they're also harder. You have to reel in your damn dog all the time and you can't loop the handle around your wrist, and dogs are harder to control and they wrap themselves around trees and all kinds of shiitake. Using a regular nylon leash cuts down on my dog walking stress so much, I also make sure my poop bags are seperated and fluffed open so I can quickly pick the poop up and move on before the dogs get anxious and start pulling.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 2:24 pm 
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This might explain a lot about why my parents always had a terrible time trying to walk their dog on a leash. They didn't use a flexi-lead, but he spent most of his time on a dog run outside, which probably felt the same as pulling on a leash unless he was right under the run. I'll keep your advice in mind if I ever get a dog in the future, RP.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 2:32 pm 
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mrsbadmouth wrote:
but he is such a reactive little shitface .


zomg i am giving Willy a new name.

reactive little shitface!! it suits him perfectly!

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 Post subject: Re: Let's talk about leashes (aka I hate flexi-leads)
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 5:58 pm 
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Queen Bitch of Self-Righteous Veganville
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 2:21 pm
Posts: 10209
Location: Illinoize
Yeah, that's why I can't have kids. I can't give them nicknames full of cusswords and tell them how they're ruining my life, because eventually it'll hurt their feelings.

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"The Tree is His Penis"

The tree is his penis // it's very exciting // when held up to his mouth // the lights are all lighting // his eyes start a-bulging // in unbridled glee // the tree is his penis // its beauty, effulgent -amandabear


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