Puppy, Week 1 (puppy post)

So Lola has been with us for 10 days now.

This past week was one of radical adjustments. Honestly by Tuesday I was really having second thoughts about the decision to get a puppy. She requires a LOT of attention/supervision.

But by, say, Thursday we’d all started to adjust and she began to ‘pay us back’ via tail wags and couch company and puppy-breath kisses.

She’s smart as heck and seems to train almost naturally. Her bathroom stuff is becoming routine…she’s learning where on the property she can go (our complex has a designated pet area) and she’s good about letting us know when she needs to go out. We walk her often (5-6 times a day) so that she can avoid accidents and be a winner.

Her being a winner is important to me. I try to challenge her, but not go too far, so we always end an activity on a positive note.

Still there are adjustments. She wakes up early so no sleeping-in on the weekends. And us being out and about means we have to be vigilant for ticks. We’ve found 2 on her and 1 on me. Today is her first vet visit and she gets her anti-tick/flea/heartworm/hookworm/etc/etc medicine refreshed which will help her but I still need to remember to do a ‘tick check’ whenever we come in from a walk.

Even with adjustments every day feels packed. Adding a couple of dog walks to doing two jobs, and factoring in that many ‘around the house’ things take longer due to puppy interest and it’s just go-go-go most days. I know this will get easier eventually but there are definitely times my nerves start to frazzle!

Gaming has traditionally been a big part of my life, but there just doesn’t seem to be time to do any ‘regular’ gaming now. I’ve canceled my MMO subscriptions and mostly I’ve been doing what gaming I find time for on the consoles (with her snoozing against me on the couch).

As busy as things feel, they feel more balanced, too. I spend a lot less time at this keyboard and a LOT more time outdoors getting exercise. Yesterday we talk a walk down to the nearby reservoir to see what reaction she’d have to water. I thought she might have some retriever in her and that she’d charge right in, but she didn’t. Instead she kind of sniffed the water and when a wave hit her, she’d had enough. Granted it was pretty chilly, too, so that one test might not mean too much.

Our next big challenge is overcoming separation anxiety. Since Angela is home all day the dog just has no clue what it means to be alone and she starts to whine and howl. This is a real challenge since we can’t just let her do it (neighbors would have a fit) and it’s hard to correct her when we aren’t there! So that’s a work in progress.

Overall though, she’s settling in really nicely and has become an important part of the family.

2 thoughts on “Puppy, Week 1 (puppy post)

  1. I was a dog trainer for a guiding eyes for the blind program… a lifetime ago…

    And believe me, the hardest thing to do was to train that pup from when it was just 3 weeks old to a mature, smart, obedient guiding eyes dog one and a half years later, only to have to give it up so it can show someone the way.

    It takes a lot of work for sure, but it is a great addition to the family!

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