It has been almost a month since we welcomed Bisbee into our family and looking back on the impact it has had, we are still in shock. From the little things, such as not being able to just pop to the next room without a shadow to the bigger things like planning where you are going to be each day and who is looking after the puppy. There is so much to consider!
|When we first got her!|
However here are the highlights so far:
Week 1: This puppy is clever and willing to do tricks for food so with some roast chicken in hand and Youtube on the laptop we got to training. Our first tricks were learning her name, sit and high five. The sweetest thing is once she has them sorted she does them without command just to get attention. Is there anything sweeter than a puppy sitting at your feet trying to high five your leg?! I don't think so!
Our challenges have included night and house training. We have implemented an every hour trip outside to encourage her to only go outside but at some point in every day she has decided to go inside - so frustrating! Then the night training - this is the hardest, I have started setting my alarm every 2 and half hours and though we only tend to have one accident per night, it's one too many!
Oh and the love affair she has with stones, leaves and mud. We don't know if she likes the texture or likes the fact that it sees us chase her to get it out of her mouth! It's such a conundrum as we'd love to let her run around without us constantly saying no but we are worried that she will swallow something or eat something she shouldn't. It's a fine line though as chasing her with a stone in her mouth could lead to her swallowing it - it really is a team effort!
With Christmas right in the middle of this week we had my family come to visit and we can confirm our puppy is a floozy - seriously she will go to anyone willing to hug and fuss her and shamefully gives away kisses/licks that we thought she saved for us!
Week 2: We are making progress with house training - we only had 2 accidents inside this week and she is learning to go to the door if she needs to go out. It means we have switched our trips outside to every 90 minutes but some trips descend into play time as she doesn't need to go. We have also started walks - only 20 minutes as we read that when puppies' bones are growing you shouldn't over do it! On walks we practice the latest tricks - wait and leave it! Perfect for waiting at roads and getting her not to pick up gross things. She is so happy when walking but strangely we always have to drag her out - she hates the harness.
She has also learnt the joy of car rides and as soon as we go out she will fall asleep in her basket, it is so sweet. Best of all she will stay that way while we shop - I mean, should we be offended that we can leave the car and she's not bothered?
We have also started leaving her for short periods of time as we thought it was best to get her used to it while she's young and sleeping a lot. We hide treats around the kitchen and her bed and she is normally so distracted we can slip out. You can tell she wakes up when we arrive back as she brings us her cutest yawns!
In other good news, the first trip to the vets was a breeze, she got treats after having her check up and then proceeded to charm the nurses - we couldn't get her to leave!
We are sad this week has to end though as this is our last chance to spend every minute (almost) of every day with her and we miss her when we leave for an hour! We are also nervous as night training is still not accident free yet!
Week 3: Bisbee the entertainer has joined us this week. She is on a rollercoaster of energy levels, either shooting around the garden like a nutter or so sleepy she can't lift her head. We have upped her food on the vet's advice - you can tell she is benefiting! This week I tried working from home 2 days and leaving her with my Mum for 3 days. It went well, although my Mum and Bisbee kept each other super excited and we were worried they both needed a rest at the end. Thankfully my Mum adores Bisbee and so far seems to be enjoying the crazy moments.
We started a diary last week to track how often Bisbee was going out to pee and I have to say it was the best thing we've done. Accidents this week have been non-existent and strangely in my Mum's house she sleeps 6 hours without needing to go. Unfortunately that isn't the case at home and after leaving a 3 hour gap we were left a present. It was disappointing knowing she can hold it but doesn't, however we will persevere!
New tricks this week include lying down, putting paws up if she wants to get up on the couch, dancing and going under my legs. She has now started lying down in the middle of the room - showing off I think but still cute!
Week 4: This week she has seemed less puppy and more dog - we are sleeping through the night and I don't remember the last accident in the house! She's also learnt fetch and 'okay' now seems to work as a way of getting her in. She has also got going out down to a fine art and is in and out much quicker - which is very welcome as it gets colder! However she has also learnt tug of war and will fight you for every slipper or sock she sneaks away or any branch she wants to chew!
Our walks are also getting longer and while she still doesn't bound out the door, she now likes to walk ahead and she's even happy walking up to other dogs now. An afternoon in a dog park seemed to get her over her apprehension. She walked in a nervous puppy and walked out a playful puppy wanting to make friends - we were so proud! Her latest thing is running home though on walks, as soon as you say 'lets go back' she will have you sprinting for the door. Great for our diet/exercise plans, really not good for my Mum's bad back! It'll be next on our list to address I think!
So there you have it, our first month as dog owners. As I said EVERYTHING has changed and we love it! It is definitely not like having a baby - this is like having a toddler with its own opinions and own mind - but most importantly its own way of getting around! There is no leaving her in a cot or pram or sling and going about your day - nope, you are full on whenever she is awake and even when she's not you have to have one-eye on her as she has a way of getting to and chewing wires you swore you put away! I mean I have sworn she was asleep at my feet, checked on her every 10 minutes and yet lost my entire work laptop cable and phone cable to her mouth at separate times - she is a talented one and so quiet about it!
It is true that they have the same effect as having a baby though - the lack of sleep, the crying for attention (thankfully there isn't too much of that) but mostly the fact that they become all you can talk about! I mean I will talk about her even when it's not remotely relevant! I have attached Bisbee pics to customers, to colleagues to relatives! I don't remember the last time I took a photo on my phone that didn't include her. She's even in my FB profile pic - I am smitten and I couldn't be happier!