Saturday, October 3, 2009
They are getting so mischevious. They are into everything! This last week has been a great socialization week for everybody. Sutter has been taking turns working on the pups when they display some type of behavior that she thinks is inappropriate. Yesterday Sherman got growly with me when I picked him up - he was busy doing something and didn't want to be disturbed. Well of course I took the opportunity to correct him and held him close and tight and told him firmly "no". But Sutter happened to be standing right by me and she took the correction a little further and did a much better job than I ever could have of showing how not to react aggressively. I put him down and she immediately started playing with him and focused on him, constantly going after him, grabbing his legs, rolling him over on his back, giving him little love nibbles all over. She didn't let up on him, if he got up to run away she was all over him and relentless. Finally he got pushed to the point where he got mad (that was her goal) and he got snippy with her and she put her mouth over his neck/head and pinned him down until he calmed down. Then started the whole process all over again. It took about an hour till he was worn out. But you can bet he learned that no matter how mad he gets or who disturbs him, he doesn't get to growl or act aggressively. The poor guy just crashed on the lawn and didn't move for a couple of hours. He is still doing a little posturing with the other pups, walking up to them and putting his head and neck over their backs, which is a dominance thing. He wants them all to think he is "the man". And that is fine, he can posture all he wants, he can't help that testasterone. But you can bet Sutter won't let him even think about getting out of line anymore! There are a couple of the pups that Sutter hasn't had the opportunity to have this little "chat" with yet. They haven't pressed their luck and gotten to crazy so she hasn't has the chance to really correct them. I am going to keep an eye on everybody and make sure that they all go through this before they go home. Even if the pup doesn't have the slightest bit of aggression in them, they still need to learn their limits. Just like little kids. And if they are given this lesson from mom first, it makes anything we need to teach them later, easier for them to accept. Sutter has always spent extra time working on Chase. At first I was worried that there was something physically wrong with him and that was why she was paying so much attention to him - it certainly wasn't because he was being growly or aggressive. So I had the vet check him over extra carefully. But he got a clean bill of health. The vet said that moms sometimes have favorites and not to worry about it. I'm not sure that is what is happening here. I think Sutter is trying to push him to get him to react - and he just isn't! He takes it and takes it, not acting completely submissive, he rolls around and plays with her, but certainly not getting riled up or mad. This guy has some patience and is so calm and even tempered, nothing ruffles him. I think he is the perfect pick to help Matt in his wheelchair. Sorry Matt and Erica, hope I didn't push you to much to choose him over some of the other pups, but I really think he is the best pup for the job. He amazes me. Now little Dungey, he likes to play with mom. He stands in line to get one on one attention from her. I think he wonders why she is playing with Chase and not him!!!! Sutter did her work with Dungey early on. He needed a confidence boost, not work learning to control his testasterone like Sherman. She gave him time when he was about 4 weeks old, played with him, drew him out of his shell so he wasn't so shy and insecure. Now he is an adventurous, happy little guy. He still really likes people and wants to be picked up and give kisses. I can always count on him to find me and actually come to me when I am calling them. Even if he knows it is because I am putting them up in their corral for a nap, he still comes. I don't think Dungey has ever gotten growly with me, even if he is super busy playing and chewing up something, he is happy to be picked up. He doesn't think I am bothering him, he will drop a toy anyday in exchange for a person. I think that is why he has been chosen 3 times (even though he was eventually dumped) because he is so friendly, he likes to greet new people and spend time with them, and of course he has that cute curly face. He is going to be a lap dog and love everybody. Out of the whole litter, he is the guy I would send to a family that has other pets, cats, dogs, rabbits, etc. I think he would look at any other pet as a new buddy. Dungey has been the pup to get "stuck". I was calling the pups and to my amazement, Dungey didn't come. I had to look around for him and finally found him in the bush under the kitchen window. He was just sitting there, calmly looking at me. I got down on thr gorund and called him and he still just sat there. Well of course I knew something was up, he ALWAYS comes to me. When I got closer, I saw he had put his head through a loop in the vine and couldn't get out. But the strange thing is that he didn't cry or struggle or get upset or anything. Just sat there waiting for somebody to come help him. Then later that same day, he got his leg stuck in a hole in the deck. I was watching him play with the pups and he was stationary and all the pups were running around and he was still trying to play, grabbing and chewing at pups as they ran by, but not moving. But again, no crying, no freaking out, no indication that anything was wrong. Just looked at me with his big brown eyes and I came over and helped him out, he gave me a thank you kiss and he was off playing again. Hmmmm, pretty brave behavior for such a young guy. It has been really rewarding to watch these boys change over the weeks. I used to think Sherman wasn't the brightest bulb in the bunch, but he has come around. He has figured out how to get in and out of his corral when I leave the door open and he wants to go in for a drink, finally!!! Sherman is my most potty trained pup. And he did it all himself, I can't take credit for it. He will NOT poop in the corral in the kitchen. He woke me up last night about 12:30 with the most horrible cries. I thought somebody was hurt and go rushing downstairs to find nobody was hurt, Sherman just wanted to go outside to poop. Crazy dog. Chase is such an old soul, deep brown eyes that take everything in and so willing to please. I can't wait to hear stories from Matt and Erica about his training. And Dungey, the once shy boy that is now the most outgoing and friendly of the bunch. I will talk about the girls and their progress tomorrow!
Posted by sherri at 10:50 AM