Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Wait ...

The black lab was steady, holding her Down like a statue. She hung her head starring at her paw with a treat atop of it. She did not blink, nor move. She was focused and ready for the "Okay" command to eat-that-treat.

My son and I were standing by in amazement. Wooow! That takes so much talent and focus, I mean - we knew the dog was nearing her last week of Puppy Raising, soon to venture to California for turn-in. She had all her learning set and ready to go, the Raiser was just having fun during his last class with her. Regardless that she was about 18 months old, that takes some talent!

We happened to mention something to the Raiser - something along the lines of, "Woooow! She is awesome."  He gave us a grin, but didn't say anything.

Four weeks later ... Haddie is doing this:
Okay, NOW I know that the treat on the paw trick is just that - a party trick that does not take much talent for these pups. Ha! Looking back, I am sure we came across as the complete Rookies that we are!!

On a whim, I decided to try it with Haddie; and she learned in less than two minutes. Not surprising, since she has to Wait for her food every.single.feeding ... so naturally she would not move when I placed a treat on her paw, and commanded Wait.

I love party tricks. I love Haddie. I love learning from my fellow, experienced CCI Peers.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Starbucks Sitting

Haddie enjoyed the patio of Starbucks during the warm days of September when she was just a wee one. But the outside air is not filled with Starbucks aroma like it is when one steps into the Cafe and exits smelling like a Coffee Bean. Some like the smell lingering on their clothes. I ... can not. I love the smell of coffee. I do not like the smell of coffee clothing ... and hair.
However, my dislike is not strong enough to not be a patron and hang with family, or friends around the coffee shops tables sipping cute red cups.

Last night we hung out with my extended family, "Just Because". We had not spent Thanksgiving together, and we wanted to catch up before the Holiday Month began. It was a nice way to kick-off the Season.
Oh, yes ... back to Haddie. She came too. I was not sure how long she'd last, but I was willing to roll the dice. I won. She did fantastic!! We were in our little corner of the cafe just shy of two hours. She was not in a down, or sit, or under the entire time. I knew that her age would warrant some exploration, however, she was not into it. The floors were too clean. Nobody else was in the cafe. She was probably just bored. But to me, Haddie was fantastic as she blended into our family.
And focused.

And adorable.

As always.

The CCI Pup passed Starbucks approval. She can hang like the rest of us ... and smell like Coffee Bean too for the drive home.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Christmas Tree ... and Haddie

Our annual Christmas tree cutting came early this year out of necessity to squeeze as much holiday into our month of celebrations. The rain held off for us, but the wind was pretty nippy. I wasn't sure how Haddie would do, as the last "freak out" for her on leash was during a walk in the wind.
We arrived at the tree farm and noticed multiple, large signs throughout the gravel lot that read: "Keep all pets in vehicle". I asked my husband to verify if Haddie was allowed, otherwise we were going to another farm. I have already been asked to leave from an establishment because of  "dogs carry allergies and we are scared it will have an accident" excuse, I did not want another confrontation on our Tree Day.
Haddie was welcomed and off we went into the farm of trees. We quickly found that the ground was a mini bog of marshy wet grass, moss, and tree stumps. Oh, it was so mucky!! I kept reminding myself that it was a good adventure for Haddie - one more texture to add to her check-off list, and more practice at getting her paws cleaned off without her grabbing the towel.

She did fairly well, only hopping like an out of control bunny twice; through the most marshy area where I think she was trying not to sink and had to literally hop ahead of me, and during the height of the wind. I am not sure how to calm her over wind, but we will keep trying. I am sure the smells of the surrounding farms did not help ~ if I could smell all the farm animals, I'm sure she could smell much more.
Haddie met horses. My girl thought for sure she was processing, "How did that dog get so big?!"  The chickens were chicken of Haddie and would not come out of hiding.
After about an hour of searching, we finally found our tree. I have to remind myself on these adventures that Christmas Trees always look better in the house and decorated. We are all pleased with our results.

We spent the late afternoon decorating with Haddie watching snoozing in her bed (on a tie out). When it was time to Release her, she went straight for a photo op without anyone asking. Awww, good girl!!!
Haddie's first Christmas Tree adventure was a success. It will be interesting to read my post in a year and see how much has changed for Haddie.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Five Thankfuls for Haddie

Happy 5th Month, Haddie!!  I remember the day you came into our life as one tiny little fur ball of whitish yellow. We went to our first CCI Class and would look in amazement at the size of the 5 and 6 month olds compared to you. I remember counting on my fingers and thinking, "No way. That will be you during the holidays?"  Now ... here we are.
photo courtesy of puppy breeder.
My five favorite Thankful things about Haddie:

*Every day as I sit on the laundry room floor with her after her grooming session, she will get right in my face. Her eyes could not get any closer to mine, and she will just stare into my eyes. Her brown marbled eyes are so intense. I feel like I can read her mind. She would like her final treat.

*Every night during her final bathroom call she will stop, look straight up into the sky, and just stare. I think it would be fantastic if she graduated to a Handler who lived in the country. She needs wide open spaces and little street lights to block her view of the stars. She sees a couple here, but can you imagine her view in the country. I love her goodnight ritual.

*She wants to please her Puppy Raisers all day long. Even during the times she knows she is making the wrong choice, she has this side ways look she will give us, as if she is truly debating over the pros and cons of her next move. She is a thinker. More so than any dog I have ever met.

*Haddie is affectionate. She will offer her nose straight to our lips for a kiss, with out kissing us back. She will push her nose against our cheek, with out adding a lick. She just wants to feel your skin to her nose. I love that ~ I visualize her with someone who will really, really need this part of her.

*I am so grateful for all of Haddie wagging into our life. The tough moments, the positive moments, the sleeping moments, the just hanging out moments. She has taught me about teamwork at an entirely new level, and I am grateful.
Thankful for you, Haddie!!! Happy 5th Month!!

My computer buddy

Since my hubby and I both work from home, Haddie is missing the office building environment. We will need to find an opportunity for her to practice this setting before she leaves our house. But I try to simulate what it would be like to be a computer buddy.
I alternate from her being under my desk and being beside my chair. She is quick to snooze and is only a moderate snorer. It is fun to see her fluffy yellow to my left.
Our CCI Class met last night due to the holiday schedule. We were able to join my son's future 4H club (we are just waiting for Haddie to graduate from puppy class). It was a lot of fun to be in an environment of kids my kiddos age, watch them working with their dogs, and watching some Service Dogs at work too with their Handler. It was a great evening and we are all anxiously waiting for Haddie to continue to grow up just so we can go to this class every week.
I am finding that there is a standard mode of operating with Haddie. She either tries newness with No Fear, or   can overcome Fear by her third try. Last night her new activities were the teeter totter, a balance beam, and a tunnel (a rather looooong tunnel).  With each experience the Trainer helped us get started by physically moving Haddie on or through the item. The next round through I stepped in as the Trainer role. The third time my son was able to handle Haddie without assistance; she had over come her fear.

I know this is our first CCI pup, but I am so happy that she has so far found her confidence relatively quickly - she has so far proven that she can recover. Last week she had issues with the handmade stairs and platform that are used in class for training. Regardless that she can maneuver our house stairs, she had a road block over these particular stairs. They are wooden and are covered with a linoleum type of material. She would have nothing to do with it.

Our Trainer worked with her last week, and by the time class ended we were able to get her up one side, walk across the platform, sit, and go down the other side. This week - she went up with out hesitation like a real pro. Yay!

Last night was a very successful night. Haddie just seemed to have grown up, her mind was active in learning, she was well behaved, she listened ... we were all a great team together. A great way to start the holiday!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Leaf Jumping

Thanks, Honey, for the fun Leaf Jumping photo shoot!!!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

My son and Haddie

My son is in the fifth grade and his school has a week of half days; which started last week and will continue until Thanksgiving. My daughter is in a different school in the seventh grade and her half days will start tomorrow.

Not being in-sync last week allowed an opportunity for my son to have Haddie all to himself. He opted to go with her to a local Drug Store after school as her outing. It was nice to follow him around and see him work his skills with her.
The two will be in a CCI 4H club once Haddie graduates from Puppy Class. In a year's time the two will be kicking it up at the local Fair. I can't even imagine what that experience will be like for many reasons. The main being I can't picture what Haddie will look like at 14 months old, and my son ready to enter Middle School.
For now, I will take the precious memories of this young boy and his dog playing with the musical Snoopy that moved back and forth at his piano in the pharmacy. It entertained both the boy and his dog. The boy pushed every Snoopy button creating chaos of a sound, but thankfully the music did not play that loudly, so we did not get any stares or sneers.
Haddie, in her typical fashion, just walked alongside him with tail waggin'.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Words of Wednesday

Haddie spent a lot of her day in the car and on an extended outing. She behaved herself in the lobby of a large doctor's office, in multiple waiting rooms for most of her morning, and spent her evening at CCI Class.

She was the star of the medical building this time with many older women and gentlemen, wheelchairs and walkers, some wrapped up tight for winter making their bodies seem bigger than actuality. The smell of the office, the elevator up and down, the pouring rain during Hurry breaks, the pharmacy with over the counter meds perfect puppy nose height ... through it all .... she did great. The comments were easy to hear of passer-bys and onlookers. Thumbs up to Haddie's good character and amazing looks.

The second lobby served the most entertainment for Haddie as there was something on the chair that I was sitting in that she could not leave alone. A spec of a stain, but whatever it was, she wanted a piece of it. After many failed distraction attempts, we opted to go for a stroll downstairs, away from her craze.

Since we had ridden the elevator "plenty" of times for one morning, I opted to try the stairwell. A tip to other newbie puppy raisers - this might serve as an excellent training opportunity all by itself. I was somewhat watching my clock so as not to miss the person I was waiting for in the doctor's office, I didn't spend as much time as Haddie needed to feel comfortable in the stairwell. I will find another stairwell closer to my house to keep practicing.

You will remember the next time you enter a stairwell how sounds change dramatically. There is a distinct echo and everything just seems more pressurized for whatever reason. We didn't even more off the landing. Haddie just sat and I just talked to her and fed her treats.  We went back to the elevator to continue our task at hand.

Tonight in training, a fellow first timer brought up how she feels guilty when her pup is on a tie-down, or in the kennel when she is busy and can't spend time with the puppy. I could relate to her statement 100%! She was very eloquent and said it much better than I am - but I am so glad she brought it up. This was during the transition time between the Advanced Class and the Puppy Class ~ so we got the pleasure of feedback from our trainer and experienced Raisers.

The take away - is put the guilt away. According to our trainer, these dogs will (for the most part) upon graduation be living a sedentary lifestyle, not to mention that dogs in general sleep about 20 hours of every day. The point of puppy raising is to acclimate the dog into your lifestyle. A Raiser popped up and said that he takes his dog to work with him every day, and she is on a tie down while he's working. And I must say, his dog is one calm, well behaved 5 month old puppy. Amazing, actually.

My new focus: yes, definitely weave training into Haddie's day, take her on outings for socialization, and when at home do not count the clock on Haddie's schedule - weave her into that part of my day too. I think sometimes I forget that Haddie is to be following my life, rather than my life following Haddie. I am not a source of her entertainment and have to be "on" all the time with her. Having her chill out and be with me matters. But with me also means, "Stay put, Haddie - I have laundry to fold and bathrooms to clean and computer work and piano to teach, and dinner to make .... "  I forget that simple matters. 

Words of Wednesday ....

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Fetch, part 2

We've been practicing Fetch with Haddie as mentioned in my last post. We have two hallways in our house, both about the same in distance. One is downstairs on hardwood, and the other is upstairs on carpet.
My son started training first this week on the hardwood. However, it got shut down rather quickly due to noise. The plastic bottles were bouncing down the hall, Haddie was sliding and thumping against the doors, all the while my husband was trying to wrap up his work day at the end of the hall in his den. It proved to be a very noisy training session.

So we moved it to upstairs where there is carpet - the only ruckus noise is caused by a human's bad throw when an item bounces off the wall or stair railing. Otherwise, it is much more noise tolerable.
Haddie gets in her workout. It is like wind sprints really - as soon as she comes back to Drop the item, she is off running after it again. She is panting and tired by the time I decide we are through.
It did take a fair number of turns before Haddie was willing to come back with out a pop-of-the-leash reminder. Now she is fairly consistent on coming all the way back to me and not turning her head away from me when it is time to give up the goods.
I began to wonder if she would correlate the Fetch game to real life. For example, if she found a Pumpkin Scooper on the floor, what would she do? If she found many items on the floor, what would she do? I was so curious in fact that I eventually threw a handful of items all at once.
In typical Lab style, she tried to pick up multiple items at one time. When she figured out it was not working correctly, she dropped a few and came back with one in her mouth. I told her to Fetch, and she turned around and grabbed another and returned. We continued the routine until the floor was cleaned up.
It was kinda fun.
Accidently, we were able to apply the Fetch game to real life scenarios yesterday. So far she is 1 for 1 when tested off leash. I had dropped an empty toilet paper roll in our bedroom; which was headed for her Fetch Box. She grabbed it and I encouraged her to come to me, but it wasn't happening.
However, hours after that she found a large plastic clip (like what you use to clip chip bags closed) on the floor .... and ... she brought it to me right away. YEA!!!
I think the Fetch training is our new favorite thing. It keeps her mind active, and it is so fun to see her brain processing behind those adorable eyes.
Side note - her baby molars are popping out left and right. Gross if you ask me because sometimes I can hear her chewing the tooth - not because it is floating around in there, rather it is because it is so crooked loose that it is hanging out and sideways and eeewww - so gross. And then her mouth gets really bloody. SO - any advice during this yucky part of teething would be appreciated. She's a really messy teether, so she's spent those parts of the day in her kennel. 

Saturday, November 12, 2011


This week's CCI lesson was demo'd on Haddie. Why? Because once again I had a question about Haddie's independent phase. My question: "Haddie is winning the Keep Away game. How? Because she has no interest in coming to me no matter what high value treat is presented." 

I know that we are not to chase, step towards, or grab the pup when they have something in their mouth that the Raiser wants. We are to coax them to come to us; ya' know in that excited high pitched voice that will surely call any pup in town.

Not Haddie. If she finds something on her own - she feels she owns it. If I initiate a toy game where I want her to Drop so I can toss it again - she's all for it, and will follow the rules.

The trainer got her box of Fetch goodies, her long line, and hooked up Haddie. She explained first the goal. That we want the Pup to pick items up off the floor (not a table or counter), and we want them to come to us with the item (or solo - if they drop the item but still come to you, that is still considered success).

Advanced Training works on the commands of Get and Give, and because these two commands are so important, they encourage Puppy Raisers to not mess with the Commands (in fear of poor training). Advanced Trainers do not want to break bad habits and then retrain. So, if we just train the Pup to pick up a variety of things, with out running the opposite direction of the Raiser, then we are set for goodness.

Our Trainer started with Haddie ~ and it was not very long into her example when she turned to me and said, "Yes, great question. No doubt Haddie needs to work on this one!" Even though our pup was being naughty, it made me happy that I was tuned in enough to Haddie's weakness and ask for help before she got much older.
Homework: find a variety of textures and shapes for Haddie to Fetch. Obviously, make it fun and exciting for Haddie. Nothing is off limits for her to pick up from the floor - with training she will learn to come see me when she has it in her mouth.

With a long leash we will close out all distractions of the world by playing this game in a hallway. The trainer will block the entrance to the hallway, so the pup does not pass and move into the rest of the house.

The Trainer, with an excited voice, will throw the item and encourage the pup to Fetch. Once the pup has the item, the Trainer will back up and use an excited voice (very important, you don't want to move toward the dog - hence Keep Away begins) to encourage a chase of you.  You moving backwards while looking at the pup the entire time makes the pup move towards you.

Ideally you are working toward the pup dropping the prized item in your hand. But to start, you grab the toy (not the dog!) and praise the puppy before the jaw unlocks to release the toy.

If, as in Haddie's case, she stops short of running towards you - you can pop the leash quickly with a Don't, but you do not pull the dog in like reeling in a fish. You encourage the dog to keep moving towards you. The leash is there for the beginning phase of training where the dog might not come towards you.

Once Haddie has the hallway Fetch game secure, we can move to working on the long leash in the backyard with more distraction. Eventually, the Fetch game will be played with out a leash. And weaved into the day - so if my pen drops on the ground, Haddie can grab it and come to me. Cool.

Yes, Haddie was corrected a few times by the Trainer. Stinker. But by the end of class (not only was she exhausted) but she figured out the game of Fetch. She has been practicing at home to secure it in her sweet noggin (future post on progress).

By teaching Fetch, the idea will be that there will no longer be Contraband in the house. The dog is free to pick up anything - so long as it comes to you. This does not mean fallen crumbs on the floor or licking the floor. It is really just everyday items.

If the pup was raised with items being off limits, then in Advanced Training the pup will most likely not want to pick up those items during the learning of how to Get and Give. It will remember, "Hey, I was scolded for doing that, why would I want to pick that up?"

I love our training sessions. We learn so much - I think step-by-step Team Haddie is learning the ropes.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Haddie's favorite toy right now is the precious Nylabone. She loves to chew endlessly during her teething phase, but she also likes to throw it up in the air, slide it across the floor with her front paws, and shake to kill.
Yes, the throwing and skating of the Bone makes for much house ruckus against the hardwood floors, but she is panting by the time she is finished. It doesn't take much to entertain herself. 
When the bone goes missing, we both notice it. It has been missing for a day. I have searched her toy basket, the upstairs, the downstairs, and under every couch. Nothing. 
It surfaced today after doing a long overhaul on the underside of every couch. It just wasn't pushed slightly under the sofa, it was pushed rather far under; not sure how that happened. Perhaps Cora found a way to get her petite paw under the couch to get the bone to go farther. She is a plush toy gal, carrying them around and sleeping on top, never destroying a single stitch.
Excitement from the two legged and (one) four legged followed the finding. Cora, however, got Mr. Green (frog) and ran the opposite direction. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Shiny Floors and Elevators

Today Haddie's morning outing was to Kohls. Although it is my hundredth time in the department store, it was a first in taking our four legged. I instantly noticed how Shiny! the floors were (five star to Kohls!). Haddie did too as she did a little curious step off the carpet entrance and onto the shine. So cute. 

Sometimes I wish I had a paid Pup-arazzi with me to take video and photos of all-things Haddie related. I know ya'll would be intrigued and glued to my blog cuz she is that cute.

We strolled and continued to work on a loose leash. For the most part she is really good about this on outings, but every once in awhile she'll get ahead of me. She must smell something that I don't notice. 

The Kohls in our area has two floors. Knowing that we are not allowed on Escalators with our pups, we got to experience the Elevator for the first time. 

She's seen plenty of sliding doors, so that was nothing new. The newness came in her seeing a wall on the other side of the door. She was cautious to enter, but once she saw the food reward she pranced in and sat to my left. I kept rewarding as the beeps of the Elevator kept sounding. 

We exited with no story to tell. 

On the ride down, however, she knew what she was in for and was not too keen on entering. Unfortunately, in addition to her hesitating, two women snuck into the elevator which was not so big to begin with.  This was not the scenario that Haddie really needed, but we went with it.

This time Haddie was more in a crouch position, kinda like holding on for dear life. The women got off on the first floor, and we did too. But ... "Oops, Haddie ... I forgot to look at something back on floor 2. We better go back." (wink, wink).  Back on the elevator, this time alone. She was a little better - but I wouldn't say truly relaxed. We exited, did a quick look at something, and got back on for a ride down. I knew this was truly going to be our final adventure for the outing. I didn't want to push Haddie's boundaries as a wee one, and I could sense I was on the border. 

It was good to notice, however, an area that we will need to continue to work on. And lucky me, I can stroll Kohls every week if we need to!  Thanks, Haddie!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Slow and Steady

Where I left off, Haddie was being a handful. Things have so far settled down. The last three days she has been kinda lazy and content when on Release.

Aww, look at her!! She is a love bug on her terms, and apparently it was her terms when my son was headed off to school on Friday. I think Haddie has seen Cora in the laps of all the family members throughout Haddie's stay with us, that she wanted a turn too.
For as much as Haddie knows in Commands and manners, I have taken a few things a little slow and steady.


Haddie has always gone to the bathroom on her leash. I feel it has helped us tremendously in her learning the Hurry command and sticking to it. She will wander to the door when she needs to, but she also goes when I tell her it is time to go. This helps when she is on outings, she already knows the routine. I have mustered the inconvenience of always having to go out with her while at home, but the benefit is awesome.

She goes to the same place every time at home. We have a small rectangular section that is fenced and double gated right outside the side garage door. It used to have our garbage cans within, but those have sensed been moved to the other side of the gate - still in range to toss the garbage and clean up of Haddie. So, while the location is perfectly enclosed, Haddie is leashed. She knows the routine, command, and it is fast.

Therefore, when out and about, she knows the routine, command, and it is fast. Going on rocks, grass, cement blocks, and plastic outdoor flooring (yes, really), she can do it all, as we have practiced the Hurry command at least 6 times a day at home every day since her arrival, so when she hears it out in the real world, she knows it.

The same is going true with her Release time in the backyard. We started off on-leash just on the grass for month one. Month two was off leash but controlled to just on the grass and surrounding plant areas. Month two and a half of being with us she has learned to explore the entire backyard off leash (which includes stairs, crushed rocks, bark, play chips, loads of bushes, and multiple patios), working on her Here command to check in with me.

Yesterday was the first time that both dogs were off leash together outside (with me). I had treats in my pocket, leash in my other pocket, and a "just in case" spray bottle of water should dog fur be flying too aggressively. I am proud to say, the spray bottle was never used - although there came a time I had my finger on the trigger.  The two had been chasing each other, and both stopped and did this stand-still sideways look at each other that just spelled trouble as their tail were positioned still and not wagging. I called out my pet dog first, who looked at me quick, and then I called Haddie to do the same. Truce.

Other than that ending, Cora thoroughly ignored Haddie, who was a jumping jelly bean around Cora trying to spark up some life into her four legged friend. Cora just could care less. She wandered, sniffed, and gazed up to the sky. Haddie wandered, sniffed, and gazed up to the sky too. Hilarious how much Haddie was copying Cora from a safe distance. And I mean safe distance, because I think Haddie knows that Cora tolerates her, but is not in love with her new roommate. The lil'sis is trying desperately to catch up with, and win the heart of, big'sis.

I'll continue to expose the girls to the backyard together. Now that I see that Haddie is not dog-happy, she volunteers to check in and come to me, and can be pulled away from play time when I command, I think eventually the backyard experience will get to be all about the dogs enjoying exercise together - more than wandering adventures. It will add another option to the Daily To Do List.

Going slow and steady has allowed me time to establish routine for Haddie, acknowledgment of who is in charge (even if Haddie does not always agree - I know I am the leader and will not let her truly forget it), and provide a chance for Haddie to know her Commands before we practice them in a distracting environment, allowing her to be set up for success.

I figured that if she didn't know Hurry, then I could not trust her out in public. And if she didn't know the Here command, then I could not have her off leash - even if it was in a fully fenced yard. And if she did not respond to me as the pack leader, then there was no sense letting her have free range with Cora in the backyard. And if she wasn't good about leaving things alone that don't belong to her (ie, fuzz, food, random things on the floor), then she wasn't ready for the temptation of pinecones, fir needles, and bark.

In my opinion, Slow and Steady can be your best friend when Puppy Raising.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Hello ... can you hear me?!

I was the one in Puppy Class last night that raised her hand confidently and asked, "I would appreciate your tips on how to handle the 4 month old puppy that is going through the freak-out stage."  

I knew this day was coming. I had heard about it since the first Puppy Class we showed up for as an "interested member" back in June. The mental stages of Puppyhood. Not really sure what else to call it, but it is really true.

I read the blog of Hobart this morning - Haddie's adorable twin brother. Seems as though the Siblings have a conspiracy going on as they both are exhibiting similar behaviors.

Haddie has found her inner naughty side, in addition to choosing not to listen. And I know it is a choice, because I am standing right! beside! her! and I know her ears are clean as I swab them out daily. No excuse, Miss Haddie!

Haddie is also into flight. As in - Keep Away, or random running at full speed, or tail tucked going in circles. During these instances, you can really see that her mental state is a little off balance, as the other percent of her day she is a gem. Poor girl, growing up is hard even for the four-legged.

The tip from the trainer was a calm human, and a secure tie-down. Check and Check. So far so good, as that is what I have been doing.

I know that puppy-brain-moments are not the time to train her on commands, Release privileges in the house, or special outings. Having her snug in her bed with toys and giving her the choice to chew like crazy, or sleep during her tie-down will help her learn correct behavior even in the most puppy-minded way.

It is just hard as the Puppy Raiser to see her time spent this way - when she could be going on a fun outing to Starbucks for my winter warm drink if she would just show she can be reliably calm.
Hellooo....can you hear me?!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

mall walking

Our CCI Pup is fond of Mannequins. I am sure she sees the shoe-less feet and think, "Human, pet me!" My adventures with her so far have taken place immediately after dropping off my last child at school. It works best for Haddie's young puppy age - she's already had her morning nap by 9a and she's ready to work.
Look at me.
I am finding that it is bitter cold this time of year at 9a. This morning I could not muster the courage to suit up in my good winter coat and head for the golf cart path for a walk with the fog coming out of my mouth, and her nostrils. I wanted a warm place to get her wiggles out and to get her socialized.
Look at the kids.
The Mall.  Yes, I was part of the over-seventy crowd this morning who did the mall walk before the stores opened. To Haddie's left were the windows of every store, to her right was me. We walked every nook and cranie of the perimeter of the mall. And she spotted every. single. mannequin.
Back at me.
At first, she was a prancing puppy that went nose first into the window. It wasn't until half way around did she realize that every Mannequin was behind glass. Slow learner in that regard. Haddie was fascinated. Sometimes she would just stop, sit, and wag her tail looking up at the faceless girl.
Back at the kids.
While it is was adorable to watch her excitement and interest, it will be an area I will have to continue to work on breaking. I doubt she would pass CCI standards if she is more fascinated by a plastic, lifeless, human figure.
Me again.
We also visited the Children's Playland in the center of the mall. We sat for twenty minutes and let Haddie figure out that high-pitched screams coming from a three foot body does not necessarily mean danger. Her eyes just longed to join the group of littles. Sigh.
Kids again.
Haddie was interested in the kids sliding down the plastic tree, rapidly running from here to there, all the while s-c-r-e-a-m-i-n-g ... and she was interested in gazing into my eyes and willing herself goodness for a reward.
Hard days work for this CCI Pup:
Photo shoot
Screaming, delighted child
Such a good mall walker.