Our Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever puppy, Emme, is now 22 weeks old – she’s nearly six months old now, I can’t believe it! Here’s how things are going:
Training: She has a PERFECT Sit, Down, Stay, Leave it, Drop it, Potty.
SOMETIMES she knows COME… And in general, has the idea of Let’s go, Outside, Paw, Pulling (funny, if I say this while walking, she turns her head back to me…), and many other words.
She seems pretty well housetrained, though we tend to have one or two piddle problems during the week. This is always my fault because I wasn’t paying enough attention. She goes to the door when she has to potty, pretty much 100% of the time.
Biggest problems right now: Puppy biting and loose-leash walking. For the biting, we try to redirect or walk away if she gets out of control. Both of these are difficult and require much patience but we are doing our best. Loose-leash walking gets better, and then gets worse, then worse. Overall, she is MUCH improved from our last post. She used to do a lot of biting, jumping at me, pulling her leash – and she rarely does this now. Now it really is just the pulling we are working on reducing.
Socializing: We do our best to socialize but the time of year has made it difficult, and spring seems to be on hold, permanently. I take her to the Drs. Foster & Smith Retail store once or twice a week in the hopes of seeing other dogs, and of course, always people. She also visits work from time to time, which she loves. There isn’t a person Emme doesn’t love!
LOVES: HER KONG! Kong is BEST OF ALL TOYS. We only use this outside – it is the variety with the rope attached. It is a very high value to her, so I try to use it when I really need it.
We invested in a couple of training dummies, in the hopes of training better retrieves, and wearing off energy. It is working well. We toss one, she races to get it, and when she has it, I encourage her to come back to me with the other. Works pretty well, and is great for tiring her out. She also REALLY LOVES her big orange gorilla toy (a recent addition).
ALSO LOVES Chicken Fillets, and a good plastic bottle or cardboard box. These provide great amounts of entertainment!
HATES: Still not sure she hates anything! She doesn’t overly enjoy getting her nails trimmed or ears cleaned, but she puts up with it for treats.
Almost an adult?: She seems to have almost all of her adult fur in, and has been losing puppy teeth and gaining adult teeth like crazy! Every now & then a toy comes away with some blood, and then a missing tooth! We will be happy to have the pointy, sharp baby teeth gone. She weighs in at 27 lbs now – so we probably have another 10 lbs to go. Supposedly she could go into heat as soon as six months (I hope not), but it is something I will be keeping an eye out for.
Cats: We continue to try to keep Emme from chasing cats. We do our best to give her treats when she ignores the cats. It is a constant challenge, but each week seems some improvement, in particular with Emme and our youngest kitten, Cosmo the Bengal. There has been a marked improvement and we’ve seen Cosmo playing WITH Emme, instead of it just being Emme playing with the kitten.
We try to keep this very calm play because if Emme gets worked up she gets too aggressive. But it does take lots of patience and we have to constantly keep an eye on things. Hopefully one day there will be peace!