Well it’s been an interesting week. Tsar was sick on the way to Preston on Tuesday and actually I think on pretty much every trip I took earlier in the week.
Monday we had an early morning trip to Lytham Hall for a wander as my friend lives there and Balthasar did really well settling in her flat whilst we waited for her to get ready. By the time we were leaving at lunch, I’d left the dogs in the car for half an hour as it was significantly cooler in the car than out and it was getting very busy.
He’s doing well in trick class and Chantel (Dawn’s “minion” and she’s now taking Tsar’s class) was kind enough to offer for us to stay for the following pet behave class (it was their last week) and he was very brave even when a dog started barking and it was echo-y. I then ended up chatting to Chantel for ages after class and helping her tidy up – he was really good and was slightly less scared of Hector (her Black Russian Terrier) by the end of it. Unfortunately, he did have an accident in the building but that’s because I didn’t tidy up and get him outside fast enough.
Thursday we went to the vets and he weighed in at 9.7kg. He was a little unsure of the scales to begin with but soon got over it when he realised that feet on the scale made the monkey feed him. He also had a DHP vaccine – I don’t do para-influenza, kennel cough or lepto but do want to cover against parvo in particular. He was fine with that and wasn’t bothered about the vet looking him over but he did have a bark at the husky in the waiting room as we were leaving.
Friday, he came to Laufey’s trick class with us as we were again practising for the demo. We were supposed to be outside but the weather chose that moment to finally deliver the promised rain so we were relegated to our usual echo-y venue. Tsar wasn’t impressed and was barking rather a lot so we ended up putting him in the other room to try and calm him down (not hugely successful) and, predictably, after class I ended up talking to Chantel for ages again with both dogs in the car. We had sick again on the way to class even though I’d given him his very first dose of motion sickness meds (over the counter, not prescription). BUT on the way home, no sick. I suspect the sick on the way there was because we didn’t leave it quite long enough for the meds to kick in as they need at least two hours and I think it was slightly less than that. Lesson learnt.
So then Saturday I gave him another tablet as soon as we got up. Laufey had his hydrotherapy session at 10am and Tsar was coming with because I’d booked him in at the associated groomer to have his feet shaved at 12pm. (I am home grooming him but one foot took me for ever so I thought having a pro show me again would be useful, time will tell). There wasn’t sick on the way to hydro (YAY!!) and he was really good in hydro again, settled really well and just laid there whilst Laufey had his session and I chatted away.
Laufey for his part is getting more confident in the water and was less resistant this week but is still displaying mixed signals and there is talk of potential back pain. We’re at our first – and possibly only – agility competition of the year next weekend and his physiotherapist is going to be there and get to see him which is a big part of why we’re still going. For Tsar’s grooming session, the groomer’s three dogs were in the grooming room so he was a bit unsure of them when they were barking at him and he had a bark back but was very good on the table and she’d done the other three feet in less than 10 minutes and we were out of there.
We stopped off by the zoo for a short leg stretch on the way home and there was still no sick (it’s amazing!) so after I’d had some lunch I decided he could come with me to collect hay for the rabbits. Before I got him and knew he was car sick, I envisioned taking pupper on as many errands as possible to teach him the car is great but doesn’t always end in amazing fun walks – something that was a bit scuppered with all that sick. He made it the hour round trip there and back without being sick either and is very happy to be in the car. He settles better than Laufey and is more relaxed about chilling in his crate too. Whereas Laufey is noisy in his crate in the car and prefers to ride shotgun and if we’re chilling in the car would like to be on my knee. Moral of the story; always crate train your puppy!
So today we were invited to a poodle meet in Lytham. We gave it a go and lasted a while but it was just too hot. He did bark at the dogs when we first arrived and was a bit of a baby if anyone ran at him a little too quickly later on but he always came back to me for reassurance as opposed to running off and he gained so much confidence from the experience that I’m glad we went. The barking started when I took him out with a friend’s doberman who was a bit too barky because it was far busier than we’d anticipated it would be and I’m now trying to train it out of him which is slow going. On the poodle walk, we stopped for a drink and I’d left their water in the car so mum headed back for it as we carried on but when she caught back up with us and they’d had some it was very clear that Tsar was reaching his limit for being out in the middle of such a warm day so we left early, stopped in Lytham on the way back for mum to go to the greengrocer and whilst we were chilling in the shading (loving capturing Tsar’s calmness, it’s going soooo well!) a couple of ladies came up to enquire… not about the cute 16 week old puppy lying calmly at my feet but to ask if Laufey was a Brussels Griffon! It did rather tickle me.
After the dogs slept their afternoon off, I did a bit of training with Tsar. I’m starting the beginnings of rear end awareness so trying to get his front feet on a platform which is proving amusing as he mostly sits looking at me as I’m also sort-of following the Puppy Culture idea of manding for attention. I’m also working on impulse control with him (so Susan Garrett’s It’s Yer Choice which is the same as AbsoluteDogs “mouse game”) which is going much better as he gets the idea so we’re working to extend the calm. It’s bleeding very nicely into his stay behaviour which, for the first time, I’m trying to not cue as a separate behaviour to the position.
Overall, a very successful week.
(I also feel it worth mentioning that MiMi is still improving with Tsar but we’ve not done as much as we should this week as it’s just been too damn hot!)
Shaved the face it and doesn’t look half bad!
Stick a fork in me I’m done!
One of us knows how to chill in a crate
One of us wants to sit with mum… In my pjs as dry off and keep warm after hydro
Quick woodland break by the zoo
I can settle in new environments
Okay the scales weren’t so bad
Impulse control is going to get me everywhere in life