Thursday, January 28, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Crate training is a very essential element to multi-dog homes. Huck came with a little baggage and we weren't sure how well he would take to his new crate. He had a bad past experience where he busted out of a crate and made a nice huge mess for his last foster home. We set up a tie-down in our home for him, but ideally want him comfortable in a crate in the future. With lots of treats, we are slowly reaching our goal.
Good news! Just last night, Huck made the decision to go into a comfy bedded crate, rather than hang out outside the crate on a dog bed loose in the room. He made this decision on his own without any treats, commands or coaxing from me. YAY! I take this as a sign that he is slowly getting over his crate angst.
Huck got his neuter stitches out today and is doing well. His thyroid levels are increasing, which means that his meds are working. I look forward to him coming out of his shell a little and showing us his true colors. He is so mellow and sweet.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
To help out a dog in need is such an amazing and empowering experience. The first few days with a new foster should be quiet and comfortable for them, to let them get accustomed to their new surroundings. As a foster parent, it is important to make sure everyone in your household is comfortable with their new house guest, including resident canines. The first few days I am always looking for signs between dogs to see if a new friendship can be made. Huck sure is a mellow fellow, allowing the senior residents of the home sniff him from a distance. In this photo to the left, Sydney curiously admires Huck. She is showing all the good signs of being ready to meet Huck fairly soon. She is play bowing in front of his crate, then showing him her rump. Looks like Huck and Sydney may have a good relationship in no time!
Huck really has a been a great house guest so far. He is quiet, sweet, and very mellow. His big paws are a little sore from yeast and he is still healing from a recent neuter surgery. But, we will get him in good shape and soon his first few days here will feel like a distant memory. I was worried that he would have a little trouble being crated in the beginning, but he has settled in nicely, without a peep. He seems to really appreciate a comfy bed! When let out of his crate, the first thing he does is bulldoze for the comfiest dog bed in the house, rubbing his face and burrowing under cozy covers. Check out this photo at the top! He sure loves a cozy bed.
His needs seem very little at this point. I am just waiting to see what tricks he may have up his sleeve.... He has a reputation of enjoying the art of chewing things like shoes and maybe furniture, so I better puppy-proof my house to avoid any unnecessary loss of couch cushions or pillows and such. And, with that said, it is my responsibility to set him up for success and give him appropriate things to chew, such as kongs or hurley toys. I've never known any dog who didn't like a good chew toy, Huck included.
Training also starts immediately for Huck. The sooner he has a good routine and good manners, the sooner he will be ready for his future forever home. He already knows his basic commands, including sit, down, and "look" (eye contact) from his first temporary foster home. Everyday we will take this a step further. Along with learning basic commands, he will learn how to politely live a home. Its all the little things, like not chewing furniture, not begging for food, greeting guests politely, potty training, and learning how to be crated quietly which will set him up for success down the road.
Huck is such a ham! Thanks for reading! Time to go walk the dogs!