Perils of Puppyhood
Odin is about 11 weeks old now. Like all puppies he's a handful. He's just now realized he got stuck in a house with old people. Poor puppy. He's adjusting. :)
We've had him now just a little more than three weeks. Potty training has been the most trying for all parties concerned, but unless he's trapped away from the doggie door, no more accidents. He knows to go outside when he has to potty. It was really only a week of accidents but it felt like a year--at least to me.
His weight has gone from 12 pounds to 22 pounds. He always looks skinny though because he's growing so fast.
There's only been one down side. Nana, the border collie. We knew she disliked other dogs, but she's always been gentle with baby animals in general. That's how Jammy, the cat got accepted.
In a perfect world, we would've rather adopted a senior dog, but Nana is Thanos in dog drag.
Nana is uncharacteristically kind with baby goats, chicks, bunnies and even kittens. So we had hoped that would apply to puppies.
Odin adores her, so much so, that he swoons over her like a lovesick schoolboy. Nana is not impressed. She became violent with him when he got too playful and her tooth actually broke his skin. He ended up with an infection, but he healed quickly. She scared him more than anything else. Unfortunately, puppies have short memories and he's longing for her again.
We had a heart to heart talk with our vet. She gave us the name of a respected behaviorist. We're friends with our vet so after she did her duty, I asked her point blank: Will it really help, or are we wasting our money?
She said with rigorous effort we might be able to retrain Nana, but if something in our environment deviates even an iota she could snap and go right back into attack mode. This was my assessment too. When she said it, it confirmed what I had suspected all along.
For as long as Nana is alive, we'll have to keep her separate from Odin unless we're both in the room to supervise.
She truly is very sweet to me and Greg, but she's driven by some insane desire to be the center of attention and she'll fight anyone who takes it from her. She even goes out of her way to destroy HIS toys. I'm in desperate need of more bulletproof toys. I think I might buy one extra tough toy for Nana to see if that helps.
The up side is that Odin is absolutely unaffected. He loves everyone. His puppy training is also going along as scheduled. He knows mom is the one who feeds him and takes care of bo-bos, and dad is the one to go to for a game of fetch or hide and seek.
The commands he knows right now are:
And #Where's monkey. That's monkey in his mouth.
We're still working on #Sit, #Back up, and #Do My Taxes.
His leash training is going well. When he gets a tad older we'll start on heel and stay. Right now he's got more energy than a squirrel on meth. The good news is he tuckers out fast too.
Surprisingly Nana was not this rowdy when she was a puppy. Her entire focus was to make sure Mom was never out of her sight. Odin is more about--will that fit in my mouth? Boys! Iko was the same way.
It's my hope in time we'll be able to leave the two of them together, but that might not be for a couple of years. We'll just have to wait and see.
We've been sleep deprived because, well, puppy. He eats constantly. Poops constantly. And tries to put the moves on Nana...constantly. It's an endless game of what the heck is that puppy up to now?
Then there's bigger danger too. Recently, a neighbor lost her beagle to a coyote, which makes us even more vigilant. Odin doesn't go out in the run unless we're watching. (Coyotes can easily jump fences.) When we walk outside, he's on leash. If it's dusk or darker, Greg goes armed. We're not taking any chances.
One night, we were walking Odin when we first got him. No leash because we didn't yet have a collar for him. All of a sudden we heard rustling in the woods coming toward us. I scooped the puppy up and Greg drew his gun. I went back to the safety of our gated front patio. Greg stayed out there a few more minutes to make sure whatever it was didn't get closer then we went inside.
We just have to keep him alive until he's no longer meal size. Puppies are a lot of work.