Saturday, January 28, 2006

Mmmm 'kay...remind me again. Why did I want a puppy? For the life of me...I can't remember. I was just thinking back to the lazy Saturday nights I used to have before the "holy terror" entered our house. ~sigh~.

In the last hour that I've been catching up on email and stuff at the computer, I've gotten up 2 dozen times b/c of "the silence". Lola usually stays & plays in the bedroom right where I can see her. And she's done just that for 50 minutes of that hour. She's taken 8 or so toys out of the basket and has been doing a marvelous job of entertaining herself.

(Her imaginary friend that lives under the bed has been playing w/ her too).

But she keeps adding stuff to the toy pile that she retrieves during "the silence"...2 different socks, a big wool sweater from the dry cleaning pile, 1/2 dozen hair bands..mostly w/ gobs of my hair attached, 2 pieces of cellophane from the trash and (my personal favorite)...a pair of my dirty underwear from the laundry. And in between her scavanger hunts, she has taken great joy in racing from one side of the room to the other at warp speed (this is driving Sherman nuts).

But, back to Why again Did I Want a Puppy??? Oh DoG...b/c I laugh everytime I look at her w/ one of those silly things in her mouth. B/c I can't stop smiling when I watch her play...all by herself...w/ a toy twice as big as her. B/c during her rampages around the room, she stops to check in w/ Mom...plop into a sit so I'll pick her up and she smothers me w/ kisses. B/c I've never appreciated Sherman & Penny more. And I'm sad b/c the puppy breath is almost gone.

I have always wished that I could have seen Sherman & Penny as puppies. I get glimpses of what they would have looked like w/ the pups we get at the shelter...but I have no idea where either of them came from or how they were cared for as babies. I'd give anything to make sure their start in life was wonderful...and maybe they wouldn't have the issues they do now. I'll never regret holding Lola at 6 days old and watching her discover everything new. I try so hard not to take that for granted.

And I really do love having this puppy...especially right now when she's snoring like a log on Sherman's dog bed.

Second puppy class...I flew solo today. I need to get a harness for Lola so I can keep her in the back seat. On the way there, she insisted in walking back & forth between my lap & the passenger seat. Not safe. The crate doesn't fit in my car so I'd solved the problem in the past by keeping the dogs in the back, securing Sherman w/ a leash I'd tied in the trunk & slipped through the back seat. I really do need to get a larger car payment on a fuel efficient Civic is just too nice right now though.

Anyway, Lola walked in the building all by herself. She's doing pretty well w/ not pulling on the leash & when she does, I say "whoops!" and stop moving. Took 3 times before she figured out that a tight leash means we stop. Smart puppy. This was of course w/o distractions. Our problem surfaces when she sees people she knows (or kids). She is a people puppy for sure. That I am happy can be used as a reward for good behavior.

We started class by reviewing what we went over last week. I didn't do any work on "settle" and it showed. That's my priority for this week. She's got a great sit & responds to her name 50% of the time. All those puppies are a terrible distraction! We have a very annoying frustration bark thing going on now. This is a problem at home too. Lola wants Sherman to play w/ her so very badly & he just lays there & glares at her. This puppy's got a set of lungs on her. I did some body blocking w/ her and took her outside a few times when she started being vocal.

New things for this week were "come" & "LLW". I do a lot of recall stuff at home and she did pretty well...blowing me off a couple of times for a tail in her face. LLW is fine & she's doing pretty well w/ that. I hope to have 1 dog that walks nicely on leash!

The play session went a little better. She starts under the chair but did come out to play a lot more than last week. When a big group of puppies hit her all at once...back under the chair we go. I try to stay close by so I can intervine if it becomes too much, but let her handle things on her own. On one of our "time-outs", we ran into a young BC mix that was having a private lesson. He was twice as big as Lola and that seemed to be more her liking. She did lots of play-bowing and was really excited to play. She just needs to get some confidence in herself. That will come.

It was 50 degrees & sunny so I took advantage of the day & took 3 walks. Sherman & I had a nice stroll through the neighborhood. All that boy needs is a 1/2 hour on his flexi & a little attention from Mom & he's happy as a clam. Penny & I went up to CA ave. and worked a little. We did lots of heeling w/ distractions. She was in heaven. She was so relaxed that when 2 Besenjis walked past us, she sat down on her own waited for them to pass. Atta girl! I really need to do this more often. A 15 minute walk w/ 1 dog is so much more beneficial than a 1/2 hour walk w/ 2. Lola & I just took a quick stroll down our street. She did really well & was unphased by an ambulance and an old loud car w/o a muffler. We met two young boys that were more than happy to help me train her. She was a wiggling, jumping, outta control puppy and they made her sit & then made a big fuss over her. Good puppy.

I had class from 4-6 (first class w/ dogs). It was a packed house, especially the first class. Saturday should have been called "dog day". I didn't take my bait bag of until 6:30!