Posts tagged ‘puppy party’

Return of the Party Animal

At large.

At large.

Today’s puppy party was thrown by Tracey B. the “Puppy Guru” lady. She is very cool, and kept a crowd of eight eager pooches under tight (but gentle) control. Tracey is a strong advocate of positive training methods, she’s an animal behaviourist and a member of the International Positive Dog Training Association. Her brand phrase is “respect, kindness, harmony”. The basic principle is you reward every piece of good behaviour and ignore or interrupt any undesirable ones and NEVER punish your dog.*

Tracey also works with violent teenagers using the same techniques so, respect due!

Apart from a spaniel, Phoenix was the largest dog there, this didn’t stop her getting out and about and pressing the flesh though- she was polite and enthusiastic and remarkably self controlled. She did struggle during the early part of the party, as the dogs were let off the lead one at a time over the two hours, for around ten minutes.

No problems in the car – now definitely established as the provider of good things and the vet as her favourite place EVA!!!

*I love the fact that nothing is ever the puppy’s fault, it’s always the owner who’s to blame for not thinking ahead. It’s a very “oy vey iz mir” approach, but it works.

12/01/2009 at 23:37 Leave a comment

Party Animal

Tim trying out new sling indoors.

Tim trying out new sling indoors.

First attempts at “stacking” using the clicker and treat method – as a preparation for Phoenix’s big turn in the (future?) show ring…show-biz is calling.

… we had a semi hunger strike on our hands. Phoenix took  a look at her biscuit based breakfast and basically refused to eat – where’s the good stuff? Y’know the meaty stuff. Biscuits no longer working as a treat – not cutting the mustard anymore. Luckily we’d already stocked a freezer up with her specialist raw food. We made a 50/50 blend of raw food and biscuit, mixing them up. This was accepted without any problem.

There were only a couple of other dogs at the puppy party – organised by the lovely nurses at the vets in their own time – seven were expected and only two turned up.  A springer-spaniel called Sasha (who barked a lot – an unfortunate trick which Phoenix immediately took up as her own. Arf and indeed Arf!). The other party animal was a beautifully trained 14 month old rescue border collie belonging to one of the nurses.

Sasha was quite timid and over-awed by the whole thing and also by Phoenix’s confidence and bouncy demeanour.  Phoenix and the collie had an intensive play session and as usual she gave as good as she got…

Sleep update: not much of a problem, a bit of a howl at night but then all is well.

Chewing: oh, the chewing! We have been following the advice of Ian Dunbar (“Before and After Getting Your Puppy”) who says you should allow your dog to bite you in order to give appropriate feedback as to the intensity of the bite, so they can gradually soften the bite pressure. This is called bite inhibition. She seems to be softening her bite: only mouthing gently…

08/01/2009 at 17:36 Leave a comment

Vet Visit.

Phoenix at six weeks.

Phoenix at six weeks.

Today, Phoenix went to the Vets for her first injection. Only the second time ever in the car: she still wasn’t crazy about it. She didn’t mind being in the car, it was the sight of the landscape speeding by that tipped her over the edge. Treats worked well to distract her.

Once we got to the vets, she loved it. Everybody made a huge fuss of her, staff and visitors.  Carolyn the vet, noted on her record that she was a “lovely and extremely well socialised pup”. Phoenix was microchipped and, like her injection,  she didn’t notice it happening at all, being much more interested in the biscuit bribe that the vet offered her.

Phoenix was given a clean bill of health, the vet commented that Phoenix was big for her age and wasn’t she actually ten weeks old rather than eight weeks!

Phoenix was invited to two puppy parties.

06/01/2009 at 17:21 Leave a comment


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