Today has been Charley’s first day with us, although he has still only properly met Sasha!
He’s seen Kasper and had a brief Toller sniff, but slow and steady is the way forwards guys.
He is a really weird little dude but just so sweet, I love him to bits already 🙂
I don’t know if it’s because he has some Australian Cattle Dog in him (which would be bizarre because they are so rare in the UK, but he does look and act like a mix with one) or because he lived with a Husky and they behave different to a lot of other breeds, but whatever it is, his body language and play style is really odd!!
Now that we’re aware it’s because of one of those reasons though, we’re getting very much used to it.
So initially he was scared of Sasha and didn’t like her at all. We all went on a walk together, me, Sasha, my partner, Charley and our friend. We swapped leads ‘cos Sasha wanted to say hi to her daddy, and we just walked on lead.
It was immediately obvious that Charley is a MAJOR foodie and has immense focus around food – like, Kasper levels!! So when we got to the field I dropped his lead, my bf kept Sasha on a 6ft lead, and we worked on focus around them both.
After twenty minutes of this we dropped Charley’s lead, then five minutes later Sasha’s too. Sasha is extremely polite, so her initiations to play (whilst puppyish) were fine. After a few minutes, they enjoyed a game of chase, but Charley was done quickly and still wasn’t sure about her at all!
We walked back to the house and managed to get everyone inside – I had to lift Charley in as he was just worrying himself about the main road so I had to give him a hoik and man he is HEFTY!!
Inside we held Sasha on her long lead and let Charley sniff about, explore, and get used to the place. As the evening progressed the pups said hi a lot, had some spoadic play, and we just got to know Charley. His focus during training is stupendous, it’s so fun, even if he only knows sit at this point in time XD
We put a spare Ruffwear on him so that if we needed to grab him or the lead we didn’t have to worry about garroting him XD
He doesn’t know to toilet on walks, so we had some toilet wars and a few accidents in the house – the funniest was when I got back from a 20 minute toilet walk, even letting him off lead, and then as soon as we got in he did a poo hahaha!
Today we had one accident indoors and three wees outside, so he seems to be catching on to that…but no poop all day, oh dear…!
This morning Sasha and Charley went for their first big hike together – after walk photo 🙂
Can I just say here that Sasha is LOVING her new brother!! Like, she hasn’t had one moment of uncertainty or fear, nothing, she is just super happy…it is totally adorable ❤
Anyway, they were great on the hike; Sasha wanted to play, Charley was fine with her bouncing around him haha but only actually responded a few times. He’s more of a trot-then-sniff kinda dog!
However at home he’s starting to feel way more confident and has been initiating and playing properly with Sasha. I have a video, check out that Husky / Heeler play style!!!
He’s not as behaviourally sound as we were told. Like, he’s weird XD Which is fine, but it just means some work on our part…he is OBSESSED with balls, unhealthily so. There’s the BC / ACD for you!!
Although he’s not currently resource guarding, this behaviour could easily lead to that, so that’s something we need to manage and break. Today we agreed that when Charley asks to play fetch, we just don’t…he can play wrestling with Sasha or tug with us, and we’ll work fetch in somewhere else so he knows it’s not an ‘anytime’ thing.
Although he is super submissive and wriggly when greeting, and there is some slight nervousness with people and obviously other dogs, his food motivation should mean we can work on that easily, and he bounces back SO QUICKLY!!
Last night he *hated* his crate, so after a few hours of misery we let him into the upstairs hallway. He could see us and Sasha through a baby gate, but was still separated from her for safety. He did waaay better up there, and after a bit of mewling slept fine the rest of the night.
Today he has been fed in his crate and chosen to lie in there twice, so that’s a good sign and reinforces that we were right to not leave him in there last night. He has been *really* whingey when one of us leaves the room even when the other stays, which is totes normal considering the huge upheaval, but we just need to avoid separation anxiety.
I’m nervous about intro’ing Spud, which we’ll be doing once my partner wakes up from his nap, but I’m hoping Sasha as mediator will help XD
Oh also he has double dew claws on his rear feet, anyone have experience with this?!
We don’t know whether to leave them, remove them, whatever…
My findings through research has ranged from leaving them, to only removing them if they’re not attached by bone, or removing them no matter what. I’ve read the procedure takes a long time to heal, can have issues once performed, and is painful and harder on older dogs. If they’re attached by bone it’s apparently awful.
A few nails on the double dew claws are long, so I need to trim them back as fast as I am able, but obviously can’t push him…shorter nails, less chance of catching and tearing.
In conclusion: he is settling in amazingly well! He’s made massive progress with Sasha, he’s extremely comfortable with me and my partner, and he’s great off lead so far! He has brilliant focus and motivation with food, and if we can get them all getting along he is sooo the perfect dog for us 😉