I’m getting a new puppy so I have puppy brain – and that means some pretty puppy centric posts coming your way!
I have 7 weeks to go before she arrives and here’s what I’m doing to get ready.
- I have designed a training plan for her to cover house training, basic obedience, kennel games and interactive feeding (these are all things I teach people in an private training session either before or right after they get their own puppy)
- I have found a great positive reinforcement agility class for her to attend that will tailor the exercises to be safe for puppies – this is important because I want to work with her around other dogs in a formal environment and I want to get her started on the foundations for agility
- I’ve also made a list of equipment I need to work on body awareness exercises (great for all dogs not just performance dogs!). I’ll include those in future blog updates.
- I have found a spot for her kennel and bed that won’t disrupt our other dogs and we can incorporate it into the routine now before she arrives to reduce stress on everyone else once she’s here
- I have a section of the house that can be blocked off while I’m working so she’s safe while I work during the day (I work from home but I still don’t want her running all over unsupervised!)
- I have found an appropriate harness for her to use for walking
- I am working on modifying a few undesirable behaviours in my youngest dog now before she arrives so he’s off to the best start
- And I have come up with a plan to allow her to learn how to be alone sometimes since I’m around all the time. I want a confident dog who can be left alone when I go out
It sounds like a lot of work but it’s not so much. It just takes some thought. It’s important that puppies get off to the right start. I do have one big task ahead of me – finding appropriate socialization places. I want to find places for her to meet friendly, healthy dogs (I’ll pester my new dog friends here on the island and schedule my Calgary friends when I’m in town there) as well as times to meet new people. It’s important for young pups to be exposed to different scenarios in the safest possible manner. So I’m making a list of ideas and will check those all out before she arrives.
And now to introduce my new arrival! Her name is Story and she’s currently 10 days old. She’s an Australian Shepherd from the same breeder as my dog Marco (Spinoff Enterprises).