One step forward…

I’ve had Lucy for about 3 weeks now.  She’s settled in nicely in the home.  Jart and her love to play, and Buddy tolerates her, and sometimes even seems to like her!  Wow…

I have seen her become more comfortable, and then start to get into trouble: chewing up all of the rubber toys, eating pieces of them as well as tearing apart squeaky soft toys, and getting into food in the pantry and bags of misc things on the shelves (not always food).  We’ve “puppy-proofed” places and things she might get into, and now watch her very closely. 

The problem is most likely that it’s time to give her a job!  Although, part of the reason is that she still is hungry and I’m still trying to put weight on her.  It turns out she has Cocchia, an infection somewhat like worms, and easily treatable.  This is likely the reason that, even though I’ve been feeding her 3-1/2 cups of food a day, she hasn’t been gaining weight and was trying to getting into food on shelves and the like.  She’s on meds now, and we were forced to totally clean up the poop in the dog yard and back yard, quite a task since nothing had been done all winter!

What have I done for training?

I have done hand touches, she picked up that very quickly.  We’re also working on stay and down (she has sit pretty well down).  And, of course, recalls.  I’m still trying to get her to go potty on command, a necessity when we start trialing and take it on the road.

She has done a few jumps, and put her paws on the dogwalk and A-frame, but I’ve only asked her to do a few jumps, nothing else official yet.  I was going to start agility training this week, but we had a bit of  a setback over the weekend.

I took her to the Y Agility USDAA trial in CT on Sunday.  She got to hang out in the crate in the van and came in a few  times with me to get used to the atmosphere in the place.  She loved it, as she loves both people and dogs – I had trouble as she wanted to greet every dog and person that came close!  I gave her a hollow bone with the Kraft Squeeze Cheese in it, and she loved it; it kept her busy when she was in the crate hanging out.

On Sunday, I had some private lessons on Stephentown.  I brought all the dogs with me.  She seemed a little lackluster as the day wore on, and vomited on the way home.  That night she was clearly not feeling well; she ate dinner, but didn’t want to play or run around.  The next morning she vomited again after eating only half of her breakfast.  I took her to the vet in the afternoon, and she vomited a couple of times on the way there. 


We figured out that she had gotten some old cheese (wow, the expiration date on the can was June 2007…. such a bad Momma!!…), and had a reaction to it. 

Now, lest you think I’m a thoughtless and bad Momma (really!), let me explain a bit more.  I had had this tube of cheese in with the dog’s travel food container for at least 3-4 months.  I thought it had come off of my parents pantry shelf before that, but I now think it was actually an older can of mine that I hadn’t used for years.  I used to often fill hollow bones with cheese (I called them cheese bones!), for Buddy, Sandy, Crystal, when travelling in crates or in hotel rooms.  I haven’t done that for years, so when I got Lucy and saw that she loved bones, I knew she’d also like something stuffed in them to keep her busy when I wasn’t around.  I checked the cheese when I squeezed the cheese into the bone on Saturday – it smelled fine, looked fine, and I even took a bit myself so know it tasted fine.  I just never thought to check for an expiration date.  You know, many items like this have a very long shelf life.  Well, lesson to me, always check just to be safe!

They gave her shots and pills to take home, and she is now on a plain rice and chicken diet.  She’s eating better, but after 2 days is still not fully back to normal; she has some of her energy back but is still not eating with her normal gusto (and doesn’t like her regular food, only that good chicken will do!).  She has started to play and chase Jart just a bit, but I don’t want to do any training yet with her until she’s back to normal.  So, I continue to read about foundation training stuff I want to do with her, and think about which obstacles I want to start her on (tunnels are next!).


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