Fabulous Friday Give-away!

Poochie Bells is participating in a give-away to help increase the awareness of Great Dane Therapy Dogs.

This prize package is worth over $45!

You will receive the following items:

  • One “All-American” themed Leash
  •  One “All-American” themed Poochie-Bells
  • One “All-American” themed Furbitz

PERFECT TIMING FOR THE 4th of JULY HOLIDAY!

Fabulous Friday Give-away!  Click on the link below for up to 10 chances to win!

http://pawsitiveacademy.wordpress.com/

As you can see, Sadie has the All-American collar.  Winning this package would round out her accessories!  Plus, we need a second Poochie Bells for the lake house!  You know we love our Poochie Bells!  🙂

In addition to loving Poochie Bells and free stuff ( ha!), the cause really caught my eye.  Training therapy dogs.  This organization is training dogs to work in the community to help

  • in providing emotional support and relaxation to a minor or disabled individual during court mandated situations
  • reading companions to improve literacy skills
  • a Therapy Dane can make appearances at Deployment Departures, Tour of Duty Homecomings, and other military programs as requested for Veterans, Active Duty, and Retired Military men and women.
  • assist in physical, occupational, and speech therapy sessions assisting professionals to continue progressing with a patient’s goals to recovery and/or continued wellness

If you are interested in making a donation towards this great cause, you can find more information here:

http://www.indiegogo.com/Therapy-Danes

I would really like to train Sadie to be a therapy dog.  She loves people and people love her!  We have great interactions with strangers on our daily walks.  And, I really enjoy watching Sadie brighten up people’s days.

This cause has motivated me to find an organization near us to get certified!

I know I can make you smile!

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Keep Your Sense Of Humor!

Sadie is the Poochie Star of the Month!

http://www.poochie-pets.net/stars.html

Poochie Bells sent Sadie an awesome All American Dog collar that she will wear proudly this summer.  She needs to grow into it and I think it’ll fit her in time for the 4th of July!  🙂  Thanks Poochie Bells!

The bells continue to be wonderful.  We continue to be accident free!  Well, almost accident free.  Keep reading.  :)-

The weather was wonderful this weekend.  90 degrees yesterday!  Sadie loves hanging out in the back yard.  She usually “plays” with our neighbor dogs through the fence, but yesterday she went over and played with them on the same side!  It was a great first meeting, but we kept it short.  Our neighbors have 2 big dogs, one is a bull-dog that was nice, but wanted to mount Sadie.  He was following her around and she eventually looked through the fence like I think I want to go back into my yard.

Sadie had a lot of exercise this weekend.  She was exhausted by the time we left to go over to a friend’s house for a dinner party.  We were gone just under 4 hours.  She should have slept the entire time.

As you can see, she destroyed her bed.  She somehow unzipped the cover and shredded the foam mattress.  I know she is teething badly.  I am hoping that this is a phase that will leave with her puppy teeth.  It’s just funny that she had chew toys and stuffed animals in her crate, but chose to destroy the bed.  We are back to a towel and sheet for her bedding.  I am only putting in one animal (she uses it like a pillow) and one chew toy.

I feel confident that Saturday’s crate problem was not anxiety because I left her for 3 hours on Thursday and she was great.  I know we can leave her and she won’t freak out, I think this is just a puppy teething issue.  I hope.  🙂

I’m sticking to the plan – just keep putting her in the crate & make sure there isn’t anything in there she can kill herself with and it will work out. Puppyhood isn’t easy, but it’s worth it!

Speaking of not easy, there are moments in raising a puppy when you need to stop and breath and remind yourself that she is a puppy and is not doing  ____  just to spite you.  I had a moment just like that on Sunday.  It was hot and our windows were open, so I decided a sheet in Sadie’s bed would be cooler for her.  I added one to the downstairs bed and she went right in and laid down.  So I went upstairs to lay a sheet on that bed, too.  While up there, I pulled her bed out and wanted to check to see if she has had any pee accidents in there.  I felt like the cover smelled a little in one spot.  Maybe not a full accident, but a little leak while waiting for the door to open in the middle of the night.  I took the cover off and smelled the actual bed.  It didn’t smell at all.  I dropped it on the laundry room floor and was looking at the cover trying to figure out if it was leak proof and may have protected the actual bed.  I was thinking how puppies have better noses than we do and I need to wash the bed if it has any pee in it.  I looked down and there was Sadie – peeing on the bed!  She had woken up and come upstairs.  Nooooooooooooooooooo!

BREATHE.

Reality check.  She’s a young puppy.  Accidents happen.  Life is good.  Focus on the big picture.

The bed was pretty big.  It was Daisy’s bed and old enough that I didn’t want to deal with trying to fit it in the washing machine and dealing with the spin cycle, etc.  I washed the cover, but threw out the stuffing.  When she gets older, I’ll buy pillow stuffing  to give her a new, clean bed.  For now, both crates have towels & sheets.  Easy to wash while we survive these puppy months!  🙂 

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

It has been a roller-coaster of a weekend.  I didn’t post yesterday because the weather was so beautiful that I spent the day playing with Sadie.  Love the blog, but the blog is nothing without spending time with our lady!  🙂

The Good

Potty training is going so well!  Sadie is ringing the bells to potty and rarely rings just to play.  We have been accident free for days, maybe even a week!

Sleeping at night is so much better, too!  Sadie is sleeping well in her crate and will respond to my sleep command if she tries to wake too early.  I usually hate Spring Forward (day light savings) because you lose a very precious hour of sleep.  Not this year!  It tricked Sadie into thinking it was 5am when it was now 6 am!  I have big plans for 6:45am tomorrow!  🙂

Walking on the leash is going very well.  Sadie loves it and with the gorgeous weather, we take 2 or 3 walks a day!  As her confidence builds, she is surging ahead and I see pulling in her future.  I’ll have to get on the training for nice leash walking soon.

I just registered Sadie for puppy school, it starts in a few weeks.   Lots of training to come.

The Bad & Ugly

Sadie is not doing well when we leave.  She has some pretty intense separation issues.  It doesn’t have anything to do with the crate.  I have done everything you are supposed to do to get your dog to like being in a crate.

It is comfortable.  It has toys.  I put this cover over the crate to make it den-like.  I feed her food inside the crate.  She gets treats for going into the crate.  She gets treats for being quite in the crate.  It is not the crate.  She likes the crate.  She’ll go inside the crate while we are home, she sleeps well in the crate.  She HATES being alone.

I left her for 2 hours today to go and train for the half-marathon.  Before I left, we went on a walk and played in the backyard with the frisbee and tennis ball.  She was tired.  When I left, the crate looked like the picture above.  I left the TV on, playing classical music.  I left her with a Kong stuffed with a Kong bone.

When I got home, I decided to sneak into the house through the front door.  I parked in the driveway and immediately heard Sadie crying!  Oh, boy.  I pulled into the garage and braced myself for what to expect.

Sadie had chewed up the crate cover.  She untied some of the ties and destroyed other areas.  Not sure if you can tell, but there was a little blood on the fabric from her chewing… she lost 2 baby teeth in the process!  She peed a little in the crate and turned over her bedding.  She ate the treat, but only until it got difficult to get more.  Once the piece sticking out of the Kong was gone, she gave up.  It should have kept her busy for a while, but she didn’t keep at it.  She had drooled a ton!

When I let her out, she ran straight to the water bowl and then we went outside.  After a hello and play session, we went upstairs for me to take a shower.  Sadie was so exhausted, she walked into her crate and went to sleep!

After the shower & lunch, she went back into the family room crate and finished her treat.  I let her, so the crate continues to have good associations.  Now she is sleeping inside THE crate, minus the cover.

I’m at a loss.  We have a vet appointment tomorrow for Sadie’s next round of vaccines.  I’m going to talk to him.  I don’t want to feel trapped at home and I do not want Sadie stressed out for hours while we are gone.  I am thinking about letting her have the family room while we are gone to see if that is better.  Marcus thinks that is a bad idea… he repeats, “it’s not the crate, it’s the separation”.  He said she’ll destroy our family room if we leave her out to roam.  I think he may be right, but what next?

I’d give you a ‘Fistful of Dollars’ to solve this problem!  🙂

Potty Training

We just had a serious accomplishment this morning, so I decided it must be blogged about!  🙂

Sadie rang the potty bells, I took her outside and she went poop!  I know, it’s a bit TMI, but I’m so proud of her {for ringing the bells}!

Sadie has only had a few accidents in our home and most of those were our fault.

Here are the things we have done that have been very successful with Sadie:

We take Sadie out to potty right after she eats a meal, wakes up from a nap and during/after a big indoor play session.  These activities seem to leave her needing to go, regardless of the last time she went potty.  This means that sometimes she goes out twice in a 60 minute time period.  I know at 10 weeks old, she should be able to hold her bladder for 3+ hours, but that is in a resting state, not during vigorous play.

When Sadie is playing, we watch her carefully for the ‘sniffing’ signal that means I’m about to pee.  I interrupt her (sometimes that means I physically pick her up) and tell her we are going potty.  After potty breaks, she can resume play.

I try to be proactive with the potty breaks.  I am taking her outside A LOT.  The idea is to teach her she can only potty outside.  After a few days of these excessive outside trips, Sadie seemed to understand and would walk to the door when she needed to go outside.  Any accidents she had were because we didn’t see the signals.  Enter: Poochie Bells.  I saw these in a magazine and of course, googled them!  🙂

So far, I love them.

For the first few days, I would take her paw and hit the bells and say ‘ring the bells to go potty’ and I’d take her potty.  Then I introduced the magic weapon – treats!  🙂

I held a small treat up over the bells and told her to ring them to go potty. (I made sure to do this when she did have to go potty.) When she rang the bells, I gave her the one-bite treat and opened the door.

Down the stairs and potty we went.

Then we went right back inside and I gave her another treat and tons of praise.

Of course, she re-rang the bells to get another treat.  No immediate treat, but I opened the door and we went back outside.  I knew she wouldn’t potty, but I told her to.  She started to “play”.  So, I picked her up and brought her back inside.  No treat.  She rang the bells a few more times and I stopped what I was doing and took her out and right back in.  The third time, she did actually potty, so I gave her a treat as soon as we were back inside.  I want to associate the bells with potty only.  Once she learned to ring the bells, I stopped treating the ringing and only treat the potty.  I learned, it is best to keep some treats right by the door for a fast, easy reward.

I have only been using the potty bells for a few days and I know we will still need a lot of practice.  I’m hopeful that in a few days we will hear the results of this training!

I am using a different door to take her outside to play.  I’m not sure this is important, but we have two doors very close to each other, that both lead to the backyard, so it’s not inconvenient.  I don’t want her to hear bells ringing unless we go potty.  I do hang the bells on the door, so they ring when the door opens & closes.  You could hang them on a hook next to your door.

I’ll let you know how this progresses.

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