11 Things at 11 Months!

With another month under our belts, I wish I could say that I've become a seasoned puppy raiser. Although I have considered myself a fast learner in some arenas, in the puppy raising department, not only would I still call myself a newbie, in some instances, I might even call myself a dunderhead.

Here are 11 things that I have learned in the past 9 months, some of which are just silly observations, and others for which I could knock myself in the head like in a V8 commercial.

1. Making an oncoming person pass you on your right: Usually, people pass each other on the left. But for the dog distracted, even a mere 15 inch difference in proximity can make a huge difference in Cabana's behavior.

2. Back paw toenails grow way slower than front paw toenails. I finally realized this after cutting Cabana's quick a couple times, always on the back paws.

3. Having the pup play with a toy that "requires supervision": This doesn't mean that I can just sit back and watch while Cabana rips a toy to shreds (I honestly thought this was what supervision meant in the beginning--doh!). It means either I play with the toy with her (as in tug-of-war) or I remove the toy from her when she starts ripping pieces off.

4. Not all toys are created equal: Some toys, even approved toys on the GDB list, don't hold up to Cabana's aggressive chewing. We've had a few $10 toys (namely, Wubbas which I believe are no longer on the approved list and Nylabone dinos) get demolished within an hour. I might as well have given Cabana the ten dollar bill and watched her shred it to pieces.

5. Cabana finds nothing more interesting to sniff than her own collar when removed from her neck.

6. Humans eat some pretty weird things (Rocky Mountain oysters, shiitake mushrooms, caviar), so why should we be so surprised that dogs like to eat cat poop (aka kitty bon bons)?

7. It's only fair to give a pup time to catch up on their "pee-mail" at local shrubbery hot spots.

8. Crazy Glue is not the strongest, stickiest substance ever created. It's dog hair, especially those stuck in the back seat of your vehicle. Vacuums don't have the power to suck them up--it's almost like you have to remove each one individually.

9. Water tastes best when drunk mid-air, whether coming out of a faucet or a hose.

10. Nothing makes you feel worse than hearing that yelp when you accidentally step on your pup's paws or tail.

11. The majority of puppy raisers seem to be female (with occasional exceptions like Mitch). Or is it that male puppy raisers just don't blog? What's with that?!?

Poppy The Puppy  – (September 5, 2009 at 11:55 AM)  

Cute! Despite having raised many more puppies than you, I still have my V8 moments too! And I learn something from each puppy. Poppy has come leaps and bounds (and a few bruises along the way), but she has taught me new skills and tested what I know. That's part of the beauty of this - there is always something to learn. Just think how much better prepared you will be for your next pup... Right?? (Said with a hopeful tone)

Heather and Ellie  – (September 5, 2009 at 11:58 AM)  

Why are most puppy raiser female?! It's not just with blogging, most of the people at puppy class are women. Sometimes they bring their husbands.
I love the picture of Cabana stretched out on the floor:)subst

mariahleadme  – (September 5, 2009 at 12:27 PM)  

On the first thing you said you learned:

We get this all the time. But think of it for a moment: those of you who drive, do you not also walk the same way----on the right? Go and observe the pedestrian public and you will see that in the US, we are subconsciously "programmed" to walk on the same side of the aisles, sidewalks and streets as we drive!
My wife has never driven, and she runs into folks all the time who have the predisposition of thinking that "everyone" walks on the right, because "everyone" drives on the right. So in a head-to-head meeting, they expect my wife and her Guide to be on the right (their left) instead of the left (their right) as Guides and handlers are taught. It can get quite interesting at times, and quite embarassing for the other person who gets all upset when my wife doesnt walk "correctly" when they find out that she cant see them. It gets amusing at times when they have to backpedal and blubber something resembling an apology after they yell at her for walking "on the wrong side."

Erin & her Dogs  – (September 5, 2009 at 12:58 PM)  

It does seem that the majority of PR's are women!! *shrugs* One thing we haven't been able to figure out!

Hobbes Dogs  – (September 5, 2009 at 1:03 PM)  

Happy 11 Months Cabana ... one month until the big day!

Sarah and the Pack.  – (September 5, 2009 at 6:10 PM)  

Most raisers are female, though our newest raiser-to-be is a single guy! I always tell my guy friends that the best way to meet women is to raise a puppy: because who can resist a puppy in a jacket with a guy?!

Oh the things we learn.

Martha G  – (September 5, 2009 at 7:40 PM)  

Yes, I can't understand the high female to male ratio, either. I tried for several years to get my sons to raise puppies in high school. My eldest son contributed his words of wisdom to my younger son - "Tim, puppies are babe magnets," but the words were unheeded.

V8 moments - I have to remember that!

Cabana's Puppy Raiser  – (September 5, 2009 at 8:03 PM)  

As for the male/female puppy raiser thing, I wonder if it has to do with women being more prone to be caregivers. After all, puppy raising is a lot like having a baby or a toddler. That's my only guess.

Mariahleadme, how sad that people give your wife a hard time about being on the left--although I'm glad that at least some of them are willing to apologize when they realize why. It's funny how some people I approach will simply NOT move over to the right. Even though they can see Cabana, they have no idea that my walking on the left has a purpose. It goes to show how people (including me) often don't give others the benefit of the doubt. :(

Lauren and Spike  – (September 6, 2009 at 12:23 AM)  

It's not that the back nails grow slower, they just tend to be dragged across the ground more often than the front ones. So when walking on cement or asphalt, the dog is basically filing down their nails.

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