A New Puppy. What Was I Thinking?

Ryder: Day One

Full Disclosure:  I have a very low tolerance for sleep deprivation.  I have tried to make this coherent.  If I have failed, sorry! 😀

Last fall we lost our dog to cancer.  I knew eventually I would want another dog, but I was planning to wait till better weather. And I usually do shelter dogs, save a life.  But this time I wanted a puppy, not a half-grown or grown dog.  I have been dealing with abused animals literally for decades and this once I wanted to start from scratch and not be cleaning up other people’s messes.  Jake, our last dog, took years to fix and I just didn’t want to risk going down that road again.  Don’t get me wrong, Jake was a sweet and wonderful dog.  But he was a ton of work with a lot of issues that had to be addressed.

So I wanted a clean (ish) slate.  Something along the lines of a Shepherd/Lab cross or a Standard Poodle cross.  Uh, huh.  As I was looking around I discovered puppies from shelters were pricey.  $150 to $300 depending on where you got them.  Wow.  And it was going to be tough to find a Shepherd/Lab cross at a shelter now.  Why?  Get this – they’re designer dogs now!  Shepradors they’re called.  And they are not cheap either.  Who knew?

In the meantime, a friend had decided she wanted a Border Collie.  She knew someone who had one and was put in touch with the breeder.  Finally the pups were born and she went to check them out and pick one.  She showed me pictures of a bunch of really sweet puppies.   I noticed a reddish guy.  She got a cutey with a half black / half white face.

Earlier last week I received a text from her.  Apparently the reddish pup was returned (don’t ask – craziness) and couldn’t he find a home with me?  I hemmed and hawed, should I or shouldn’t I,  I wouldn’t be rescuing anyone, I was going to wait till later, I wanted a bigger dog, etc…  I was going to say “no” but then I asked myself, “A month from now are you going to look back and regret not at least going to look at him?”  So I caved and went to see him.

What did I find?  Border Collies outside, Mom dog and 3? 4? Jack Russell Terriers, and a couple of preschool aged kids sharing space.  Bedlam.  Sort of.  No one was causing trouble, just a lot of noise and activity.  And a little puppy just doing his thing around everyone else.  Mom was delighted to have company, i.e. a new play buddy.  She danced up to me with her preferred fetch item and threw it for me to catch. And even though we were playing fetch in the livingroom, no furniture or people were knocked over. And mom had no problem with a complete stranger handling her.  Eventually I got down on the floor and started playing with the puppy; and handled and pushed and pulled.  He’s definitely going to be an independent little cuss, but he was a good guy.  So I sucked in a deep breath and said I’d take him.  *head desk*

"I don't have time for this!"  I took 6 pictures of this rascal while the Husband struggled to get him to hold still.  This was the only one that wasn't blurry!

“I don’t have time for this! And what is that ‘thing’ you’re pointing at my face?” I took 6 pictures of this rascal while the Husband struggled to get him to hold still. This was the only one that wasn’t blurry!

Did you know that I haven’t had any dogs under 6 months of age since my teens? That’s more than one or two decades ago.  And having baby critters is worse than having baby humans around.  Baby humans can’t squeeze themselves into impossibly tiny places.  And baby humans don’t have the ‘tooth power’ that baby critters have.  So when baby critters put things in their mouth, they tend to shred them.

So many toys! I want them all!  Hey, Saver! Remember that sewing job you did on the octopus toy there after Jake tore it open?  Took Ryder about 5 minutes to find the repair and rip it back open! :D

“So many toys! I want them all!”  Hey, Saver! Remember that sewing job you did on the octopus toy there after Jake tore it open? Took Ryder about 5 minutes to find the repair and rip it back open! 😀

All babies have a tendency to over extend themselves.  Wouldn’t it be wonderful to still have all that excess energy?!

I'm too tired to eat my supper.  A new home is very tiring.

“I’m too tired to eat my supper. A new home is very tiring.”  Ryder takes an evening nap so that he can resume exploring and chewing.

"Mom, he's making banging noises up there.  It's scary!"

“Mom, he’s making banging noises up there. It’s scary!”

"But maybe something interesting is going on."

“But maybe something interesting is going on.”

Future Disc Dog?

Future Disc Dog?

The best toys are free!

The best toys are free!

Nap time.  In the middle of the livingroom floor!

Nap time. In the middle of the livingroom floor!  I wish I still slept that well!

That’s all for now.  It’s been a long six days.  Reality has jumped up and bit me on the butt. Did I mention I don’t do mornings?  *head desk* But I’ll post about that later. Yaaaaawwwn.

6 responses to “A New Puppy. What Was I Thinking?

  1. Good luck raising him! I’m having a terribly hard time raising my Chiweenie, she’s far too hyper – Bites and chases everyone. Hope your little cutie turns out better than my one.

    • Welcome! All puppies are hyper little devils. They have to be taught not to chase and nip because it is instinctive for them. It’s a hunting behavior. Do you have some place you could take puppy classes? It’s always much easier if you are around other people suffering just like you. 😀 Puppies are A LOT of work! Good luck!

      • Unfortunately, there are only two veterinary clinics in my city and that’s all we have. There’s no place I can take classes or get any assistance from. I’ve tried everything – Being gentle and ignoring the behaviour and even being dominant, but to no avail. Every time we go into the yard, we get ambushed, chased and bitten. I’m really fed up of this behavior. Well, I just pray she’ll grow out of it. 🙂

        • So sorry to hear that you don’t have any local help! I don’t have anything nearby either, I have to drive to another town if I want to do classes. And most people around here aren’t real big on training their dogs. *shakes head*

          Bad news I’m afraid. She won’t grow out of it! Dogs form habits very easily (which is both a good thing and a bad thing 😉 ) and they stick with what they think works for them. From your comment it sounds like she stays outside. If she is alone, that is part of your problem as dogs are pack animals and hate being separated from their pack/family. Consider crate training her so she can live in your house and share your life. You are her new pack/family. Here is a good site for house training: http://thehousebreakingbible.com/index.htm

          And this is a good book (it is by the Monks of New Skete, but it is not a religious book): http://www.amazon.com/Art-Raising-Puppy-Revised/dp/0316083275/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1427463279&sr=8-1&keywords=the+art+of+raising+a+puppy

          And also this book: http://www.amazon.com/How-Raise-Perfect-Dog-Puppyhood/dp/0307461300/ref=pd_bxgy_b_text_z

          You CAN fix this! It’s just going to take time and LOTS of work. I’ll be cheering you on from here!

          • Thank you very, very much for all of your time and assistance. I am truly grateful. Yes, I too have read that dogs who’re kept outdoors tend to suffer from separation anxiety but we’re Muslims and we have to offer our prayers due to which it’s impossible for us to keep a dog indoors. Perhaps I should try to spend as much time with her outdoors as is possible for me. I’ve tried tiring her out with games of fetch so she can use all that excess energy but that didn’t do the trick either. Well, I’m still going to keep trying. Thank you, once again! 🙂

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