We’re a week and a half into puppy ownership and already Tilly feels like part of the family. Some say it’s like having another baby or worse. So how has she changed our lives?
Nights – After some whining the first 4 nights she now sleeps through, or at least, we don’t hear anything from her until we go down in the morning when we are greeted by a wriggling, licking, bundle of excitement. I have never had such an enthusiastic morning greeting in my life as the ones Tilly gives.
Creativity – For the first few days creativity was zero as we adjusted to the little hurricane that had entered our lives. She naps a lot but that time was spent catching up as we felt we had to be near her every waking moment to prevent accidents and destruction. Then out came the box of ribbons and cord to create a ‘chewy, taggy’ blanket. Tilly has learnt very quickly what no means but that doesn’t stop sneaky attacks on clothes, shoes, furniture etc, especially when she first wakes up from a nap and is in an extremely playful and energetic mood.
Thankfully 10 minutes of play soon calms her down and she’s happy to potter about. The blanket was made by sew ribbons and cord between 2 layers of fleece fabric. All 4 sides were quadruple stitched.
After a few days I got my crochet out when she was in a quiet mood and surprisingly she ignored my yarn and I’ve been able to do short bursts of crochet on my cardigan, usually done with a sleepy observer and slight handicap.
tug of war with sock toys we’ve also made for her to chew and attacking her squeaky toy by pouncing on it, growling and barking before backing away again to prepare for the next attack. This is the only thing that makes her bark and she’s really not sure whether it’s friend or foe.
Socialising – Going out has been limited to 2 hours at a time so Tilly’s not left alone too long. Mostly we have stayed in but we haven’t been lovely as so many people want to come and see Tilly, especially those with children. This has been great as Josh has had plenty of other children to play with as well as Tilly having the opportunity to get used to up to 9 children at a time!
Chill out – Thankfully, like babies, Tilly does sleep a lot and this is my opportunity to get on with jobs with Tilly under my feet and Josh’s opportunity to relax and read or for a bit of screen time, often with Tilly cuddled up on his lap.
Training – Training is generally proving a lot easier than anticipated. Tilly learnt to sit and come within a couple of days. She also goes to the towel by the back door and ‘wipes’ her feet, scrabbling with her feet on the towel after coming in from outside. This one has continued since a very rainy day, when we found out that she hates getting wet! She is also learning lie down, fetch and drop (usually someone’s shoe laces Or some other non toy she’s found lying about).
She also knows now that she mustn’t scrabble our legs to be picked up but to sit by us. If we don’t notice we now get a little pat on the leg with a little paw and beseeching brown puppy eyes looking up at us.
House training has been similar to having a toddler but easier. Anticipate when she needs to go outside and go out with her until she’s fine what needs doing! She’ll mostly whine or scratch at the door for bigger jobs but puddles are a bit more hit and miss. Thankfully it’s mostly a case of when she wakes up and after meals and with the gorgeous weather we’ve been able to be outside with her a lot of the time anyway. At first she wouldn’t go out alone but now she will potter in and out and doesn’t have to be under our feet all the time. We do just have to keep an eye on the Herring Gulls that are nesting nearby in case they decided she’s a threat and come down to attack. They’re quite vocal so we usually have plenty of warning when they’re about and mostly they come to the neighbours who feeds them and not into our garden.
Lead training is a different matter. We struggled to find a collar or harness small enough. We finally found one in Poundland but it doesn’t stay on the tighter setting and she manages to get it with her mouth and keep worrying it. We also have to sneak out on while she’s sleeping! We’re hoping that over the next week she’ll grow enough for her to fit into a better one and we can accustom her to it before she starts to go out for walks after her next injections.
That’s about it I think on the dog front (congrats if you’ve stuck around through all that waffle, you can breathe a such of relief now!!)
So the verdict on having a puppy. Easier than I thought but still time consuming. Only like having a baby in the sense that she naps a lot, when she’s awake is more like having a potty training toddler with a slightly mischievous streak. Fun and great company already. In Josh’s words, hard work but fun and like having a friend round all the time.
Hubby has the coming two weeks off work. He’s hoping to get some jobs done around the house and then once Tilly can go out we’ll hopefully get some time out and about too. I’ll try and pop by with some pictures at least.
Enjoy the rest of your week and Happy Crafting.