Henri is my best friend because... he has shown me what it is to completely and unquestionably give love and to completely and unquestionably receive love. He takes it in completely, without fear or questioning if it's real or if he deserves it. It is so clean and pure. It feels so good to just feel love. Just feel, not think. Just to accept love. Wherever Henri is, that's home.
Length of friendship: 5 and 1/2 years (Henri turns six on Nov 20th and I've had him since he was 4 months old - he only weighed 9 pounds then but his ears were just as big!)
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♡ How old is Henri?
He turns 6 on Nov 20th
♡ Can you tell us more about his personality?
Henri is loving and silly and sweet and funny and kind and always positive/upbeat. Even when he's had a cone on his head, he doesn't let it get him down - at all. He's a little trooper. Also, a funny thing that he does is smell eyeballs. He doesn't lick, but he will go up to people (and they'll always think that he is going to lick them) and then he smells one eyeball and then the other. I have no idea what eyeballs smell like.
He loves chew toys and playing tug. He growls sometimes when playing tug - I tell him that he is very tough. (It's the only time he growls.) He also likes playing keep away. (Not fetch - keep away.) He wants everyone to want whatever he has in him mouth (ball, toy, etc.) and to chase him. He never gives it up. And he never wants you to stop.
♡ What are Henri's favorite food/treats?
He eats Acana in a variety of flavors with Stella and Chewy freeze-dried chicken mixed in (he loves chicken). His favorite treats are Orijen and his favorite human treat is cheese - he loves cheese. All kinds. Except vegan cheese - I tried to give him that once and he wouldn't eat it. He also loves Peanut Mutter cookies from ThreeDogBakery @threedogsd (we go there all the time). Henri is the most gentle eater - I didn't even teach him that. He never snaps. You could put your fingers covered in food in his mouth and he is completely gentle.
♡ Henri looks so strong and active, where is his favorite place to play?
He loves playing at the beach (Del Mar Dog Beach), even though he is scared of the water and will only go ankle deep. He loves rolling in the sand. (Henri keeps his eyes open while he does this though, so he gets tons of sand in them!) He also likes playing in his grandparents' back yard - as soon as he gets there he has to check the squirrel trap (it is a catch and release trap). He goes crazy if something is in it! His favorite bar (they have magnets of him up there and he had his 5th birthday there) is Beerworks @sdbeerworks. They always give him treats. He's actually not super active though. He just looks like it! (Henri has a naturally good body without working out.)
He has problems typical with frenchies, and a lot worse than a lot of franchise - he can overheat and get out of breath very easily. (And he pukes when he gets too excited.) I have gone on many walks with him (short walks) where I have had to carry him home, which is not easy - he weighs 25 pounds and I'm out of shape too! But he never seems upset by anything. He never feels sorry for himself. He has the most accepting, positive attitude I have ever seen. Henri also has a doggie stroller for hot days or longer walks so he can still come. He always wants to do what I am doing/ go where the people are going.
♡ Is he always friendly with other dogs?
Always. He has never been unfriendly to any living thing. Except once he got in a fight with a raccoon!
♡ What's the cutest thing he has ever done?
He has a pretty cute Frenchie Howl. I posted a video of it on instagram and DogTV @dogtv decided to make him a dogtv star. They videotaped him and his friends at the beach. Also, my favorite thing is that every time I come home, I sit down on the floor in front of the door and he runs into the room and puts his arms around my neck and gives me a big hug. It is adorable.
♡ What is the craziest thing you have ever done for your pooch?
Tons of stuff. He's flown all over (NY, CA, Montana) (always in the main cabin). I've always had themed birthday parties for him. His 5th birthday was a fundraiser with a photographer, gift bags, venders, raffle baskets, and contributions from over 12 companies. I've had tons of paintings done of him. I buy frenchie stuff like crazy. I have like 4 different frenchie pjs. He has stairs onto the bed and the couch (i painted one of them with elephants) and he has almost a bigger closet than I do. He must have at least 20 halloween costumes. His stroller was also super expensive, but I wanted to get him a good one where he'd have space and get a lot of breeze and be able to look out!
♡ What is life like for Henri each day?
He is a great sleeper. If I feel like sleeping in, he is completely happy. He could stay in bed all day. Henri plays with his toys (we have baskets all around the house.) He loves toys. We go on errands and he rides around in his carseat. People in stores and restaurants know him. We go to meetups with our meetup group on meetup.com: it's called Henri's Friends. We go to the dog bakery, to the beach. If I'm going to be busy for a while, I take him to his grandparents' house to play with his Rhodesian Ridgeback uncle Kazi. We take lots of pictures. He takes lots of naps.
♡ Can you tell us a bit about how you got Henri and how things have changed with him in your life?
Henri is the first dog I have ever owned on my own. I wanted a Frenchie for 3 years before I got him. I used to chase people blocks away in NYC who had them. I'd try to act normal and cool and just walk when I reached them, but I'd be out of breath. Henri was my 30th Birthday present from my parents. He is from the Ukraine. From the moment I met him it was like he knew I was his. He feel asleep in my lap in the cab home. I was so nervous. Training him was hard. Especially potty training. We were both very frustrated.
But Henri soon became my best friend. He's my baby boy. I would do anything for him. I would probably die for him. He makes me so happy. When he sleeps (and sometimes even when he isn't sleeping) he snores so loudly. But now I can't sleep without him in the bed. Hearing his snoring is like the ocean for me - it is soothing. And I need to feel his weight on the bed. He is the most perfect thing I've ever met. He is completely kind and innocent. Henri doesn't have a mean thought in him. He is my idol - I wish I was more like him.
♡ It looks like Henri has been to many places, which memory is the best one for you?
I wouldn't be able to decide. Henri has lived in NYC and San Diego and has gone on vacation to Montana (and he is originally from the Ukraine). So he has been many places! I loved watching Henri play in the snow! He would bounce around and disappear. He hated the shoes that I'd try to get him to wear (to protect his feet from the salt on the streets) and would shake his legs and refuse to walk normally. Henri has a really cute green fleece bodysuit for playing in the snow that looks in the back like he is wearing ass less chaps. He is adorable in those.
My best memories of him are just the everyday ones though. I love my hugs every day, and I love sleeping with him next to me. I love carrying him - I always call him my big boy - and he lets me hold him like a baby on my hip. Looking back at him in his car seat when I am running errands and seeing his huge smile. I love how excited he is when he runs to me when he didn't know where I was. I love rolling him onto his back and kissing his chest. He makes very happy noises. It's adorable.
♡ Henri Looks so adorable in his pictures, does he love being photographed?He is great about sitting and waiting for his picture taken, but very hard to get to look at me. I have to make all sorts of noises or wave objects around. He acts bored. When it comes to pictures in clothes, he is tolerant. His least favorite are costumes that cover his ears. (He also hates his rain jacket - but he hates getting his ears wet, so he's unhappy with it on or off!) But I can point to the ground and he will walk over and sit and pose. He loves the treats and kisses he gets afterwards.