I’ve been feeling a lot better today AND we got some chicken in, so we’ve had some awesome training 🙂
- Knows her name
- Knows a positive interrupter (aka kissy kissy noise!) means ‘give me your attention for treats’
- Has learned sit and will sit with moderate distractions (eg. on a walk in the dark, indoors when the cats are running about – seriously impressive!)
- Knows touch (nose to palm)
- Is fine having her harness put on and taken off, her feet handled, and being dried
I have videos I want to sort, one of Sasha training and another of her and Pixie playing, but I haven’t been able to use the computer and of course we’re a bit busy haha, so for now here’s a really crap 15 second video of Sasha doing a hilarious sit 😀
Sasha and Pixie are doing GREAT with each other 🙂
The problem is that Pixie now wants to play with Sasha a lot of the time, but Pixie is a very broken little dog. She doesn’t act like a dog should in A LOT of situations, and that’s because of the lack of socialisation she experienced with her previous owners.
A prime example of this is when she plays with other dogs. Her play style is very erratic and not at all how dogs *should* play – this is why Raiden is such a fantastic match for her because he takes it all in his stride and isn’t ever phased by her weird behaviour.
An example of how she plays is: rush to the other dog, barge into their face and make sure they can’t do anything but interact with her. When they start trying to play (eg. chasing or play bows) she freezes and gives off every signal that she’s terrified and to please go away. When the other dog does go away, Pixie runs to their face again, demands attention, sprints at top speed to elicit chase, then again freezes when the other dog catches them and appears terrified.
This is just how she plays, and she actually isn’t miserable at all – even as she has a front paw raised, head turned away etc, if the other dog ignores her and politely moves away, Pixie will desperately waggle her raised paw to get their attention back onto her. This is just how she plays.
In the photo below you can see she appears very unhappy (ears, facial expression, body posture) – yet SHE was the one following Sasha and demanding play!
Now that’s fine with an adult dog who doesn’t mind at all, but for a puppy who’s learning dog body language, you don’t want her to be encouraged to ignore a dog giving off those kinds of signals. And that is exactly what Pixie is doing.
Sasha is immensely respectful. As soon as Pixie appears upset, she turns away and goes to do something else, so obviously it’s confusing when Pixie then rushes at her only to freeze again.
So although Pixie wants to play with Sasha, I’m really not letting her. They can snuggle together, train together, have hello’s…but no play. We’ll rely on Kasper and Raiden to teach good play etiquette, and hopefully meet dogs out on walks too.
However the good news from that is that Pixie WANTS to play, and is so comfortable with Sasha – we thought it would be a month before we got to this stage 🙂
The other difficult thing is Pixie’s desperation to be THE ONE that I am talking to or interacting with (she has always been this way, with the cats, the boys etc), and also if I call Sasha or am training with her, Pixie will come bombing over and totally throw us both off 😛
Obviously these are very much temporary problems, and we have the easy solution of sticking Pixie in the pen during training (which btw Pixie has rocked, she has zero issues in there at all).
So really, overall, things are awesome 😀
For accidents in the house Sasha has still only had one. She’s slept overnight every night with not a single whine – not in crate or a pen, just on the floor. She loves her puzzle feeders and, when she hasn’t been riled up by Pixie or the cats, she’s really good at entertaining herself and playing with toys on her own.
We finally began boy intros after days of room swapping. Basically we had a baby gate over the kitchen door, and the boys were free from their crates one at a time. Everyone had puzzle feeders so they were entertained and busy, there was some sniffing through the bars, play bows from Rey, and it was just nice and easy 🙂
Walks with Sasha are so fun! She’s a nightmare on lead as most young puppies are – not for pulling, she doesn’t pull at all and I’m rewarding that a lot – but for zigzagging all over the place and getting under your feet!!
We haven’t gone far yet because Pixie is on walks with us, and Sasha can only walk for about 15 minutes (5 minutes per month of age) so we’d need to carry the huge lump to get any further and doing so managing Pixie too would be a pain XD
But we have managed to find places for her to go off lead, four different off lead adventure spots in two days!
She’s been great of course (most puppies under about 16 weeks have a built-in need to stay close to their owners so it’s an amazing time for recall training!), although watching such a huge, clumsy, lumbering puppy doing zoomies is hilarious 😀
We worked on lots of positive socialisation today (to various noises – kids screaming, busses, roadworks, birds screaming etc). We’ve already started a lot of work on her choosing to offer focus (see photo below) and we’ve even conquered a few sits outdoors no sweat!
The cats are doing so good with Sasha to say how initially disgusted they were upon first seeing her. When they are lying down they don’t care about Sasha plodding around them or sniffing them – their relationship gets pushed back a little because she’s so bloody clumsy and huge Poodle feet don’t feel great stepping on you XD – and Pecan has been sat on numerous times without caring at all.
When they are walking we have some impulse control to work on, as Sasha will happily bound after them, and even a 5 second bound after a cat really riles her up and she’s more barky and struggles to settle afterwards. Overall fantastic though!
Extra random photos, because why not? 🙂