A happy Doodle is a Messy Doodle!

Am trying a different font, please tell me if you like it better or worse Smile AND I have finally managed to download Windows Live writer so hopefully will be able to do more to my blog yay!

As the title suggests I am now starting to relax a bit more and I am not on his tail 24/7. I have allowed him to play in the garden without me going out every single time but after a few minutes of him being quiet I shout him in. 95% of the time he comes straight away and he gets a treat and I then allow him back out. I have to shout ‘wassis’ and he knows something yummy is heading his way. We do the same in the park. He comes back to us and sits and gets a treat. Only this morning he has become more brave and went storming off to meet the other dogs in the park without a second glance to me! He soon changed his mind when he went up to a Japanese Akita which wasn’t very friendly and snapped at him. Luckily the dog was on a lead and Scooter came running back to me.

weeding doodleWe have had a busy weekend doing the gardening front and back (with his help of course) making the most of our September sun. I did make the novice mistake of bathing him this morning first! Will not be doing that again. According to my www.doodlemania.co.uk friends a common trait of a doodle is their ability to stay dirty no matter how hard you try and keep them clean. Their motto is ‘A happy Doodle is a messy Doodle’ I keep having to clean his ‘beard’ although I tend to call it a goatie as it’s not quite a fully grown beard just yet.

IMG_0013As I said I bathed him for the first time yesterday and he was better than I thought he was going to be in the bath. He did of course try and get out but I kept massaging his coat and he did settle down. As his face is still quite small it was bit difficult to clean it all properly so I am going to have to get a small soft sponge and also a small soft brush for his paws.  I did have some pet scissors and I have managed to cut some of the hair in front of his eyes. I have also bought some nail files and we did try and file his nails (between me and my daughter) but he was having none of it. We will try again when he is really tired and hungry and he will be more interested in the treat than what we are doing.

I am so desperate to be able to take him on longer walks. He really does want to be out at the park all the time. BUT I am being good and he has 2 quick 10 minute walks a day. I take the children to school and then come back and take him over to the park. I am quite lucky that it is literally behind the houses over the road. I take him different ways so he is not sure which way we are going. He has become clever in knowing the places we walk and pulls to go there. I have tried the stopping technique and waiting for him to come back to my side but he just sits (he knows when I stop by the road that he has to sit so every time I stop he thinks the same and I cant fault him for that!) So I am going to try the swapping direction technique. My 9 year old son did it yesterday and we did look daft walking backwards and forwards down our street but I know it will take a week or so before he gets it as he can be quite stubborn with things he wants.

Who’s counting the days??

I know I have not posted for a long time but life does get in the way. I have written this blog so that family and friends can have a look and see how our puppy is doing and it saves me showing  photos all over the place. And also for me to look back in time and see our little pup as he grows up.

I DID actually do a long post a couple of days ago but then when I went to post it from Zoundery Raven  it came up with an error when posting it to my blog and I lost the whole lot! I was very disheartened and to be frank angry and too tired to do it all again that I just gave up. So here I am again with a backup plan of copying it onto something else before I post it on and hopefully as you are reading this, it has worked!

Well Scooter has had a lot of stuff going on in  the past week or so. He was the bouncy hypo maniac at the puppy class registration. He was the youngest there to be fair so I will let him off slightly but he just had so much energy and he wanted all the other ‘placid’ pups to get up and play. Their owners had other ideas though and kept giving my pup the ‘go away’ stare. Oh these classes are going to be fun. We are booked in for October 15th. Scooter will be 4 months old. Some of the others were already 5/6 months so they have waited a little while to do this. I on the other hand wanted to install this as early as possible in the hope I get some more control over my fluff ball. One thing the lady did say to me about his nipping is to put my whole hand in his mouth when he does it and this should stop him as they don’t like that so I have been doing this. The jury is still out on that one.

He is a bouncing bundle of fun. He seems to jump around at everything. I am trying to stop him jumping as it can’t be good for his growing bones. There is one thing we have 95% conquered and that is that he waits on his towel while we get his food ready and he does not move to get it until I give the order to do so. I am amazed at this but I am proud of him, he realises that he doesn’t get his food unless he stays until permission given.

As we are now taking him for very short walks around the block we are trying to get him to walk without pulling. This is going to be tough I think. He thinks that when I stop because he is pulling that he has to sit as this is what we do when we get to a kerb. So that is what he does. He hasn’t figured out that he needs to come back to my side without me pulling him there but then as soon as we start he pulls again. This is going to be a long lesson. I did let him off the lead at the park with some caution but as he is only young he doesn’t stray too far from us. This will all change I know when he comes into adolescence! Just like my teenage son he will not listen to anything I say. That will be the hard tasks of puppyhood. The kids absolutely love that he can go off the lead and have some freedom. It is nice and he does meet other dogs and play. so it’s all good experience so far. He has actually met a sproodle (a Springer spaniel X poodle) called Basil who lives round the corner. The last time I saw him he was smaller than Scooter and now he is up to my waste almost and is more bouncy than Scooter believe it or not. I have the wet paw prints on my jeans to prove it!

One of the best things of owning Scooter, apart from his company in the evening when the children go to bed, is when he comes and sleeps by or on my feet. He is so warm and it’s a lovely feeling that he wants to be close to you.

Another change is that the children are now back at school and I am back at work. My neighbour has kindly offered to come and let him out into the garden for a while and they play with him inside. He was a bit unsure of them at first and he did wee in his cage. probably in anxiety, but after a while he was fine with them (I am told). when they came round later on that day he was very excited to see them so it should all be ok.

It is almost time for me to go to bed right now and Scooter soon tells me when it gets too late as he gets up and goes into his bed all by himself. It is so funny but lovely to see that he is sees that as his space.

Day 16/17 Not an allweather doodle

OK I thought this blog would dwindle once I was back at work next week and kids back at school (I’m not counting the 7 days and 12 hours left!) but with Scooter sleeping less and kids getting back into their messy ways leaving things around for an inquisitive doodle, my free time has been more slack already.

Bush Monster! doesnt like the rain.

He was quite funny last night. I took him out for a toilet break at 10.30pm and he then went to sleep by my feet. May I just add that it so lovely having him lie on my feet. He is so so warm and it feels great. You certainly feel the cold when he moves. The same can be said when he is licking your feet. It can be lovely but I am very ticklish so sometimes I cannot bear it. Anyway I digress, I then was up for another couple of hours, (I am a night owl) so I decided to take him out for a final toilet break. I opened the back door and it was blowing a gale and raining. I put on my ‘back door’ sandals and grabbed my daughter’s groovy chick and progressed to the middle of the garden thinking that scamp was following me behind as usual. To my surprise he was standing on the back door step looking out at me. I can only imagine him saying ‘Are you mad? I am not going out in THAT!’ No amount of persuasion was going to get him out into the garden and so I was standing like a wally in my sandals and pink umbrella in the middle of the night in the pouring rain for absolutely no reason whatsoever. Great!

Training a doodle can be hard when you can only do it on his terms when he feels like doing it. If he is not interested in the treat that you have or the toy that you are bribing him with then there is no point. It is quite comical when he gives you that look as if to say ‘no chance misses!’ and he strolls off to do his own thing. You can only train them if they are interested. I cannot wait until we start puppy classes. I am hoping they can teach me the right way or confirm I am doing things OK, which of course I am probably not.

Lead training is still the same. We walked him out in the garden today and he just went and lay down on the grass and would not budge for nothing, not even enticing treats! He has a very stubborn streak like me. We have 4 days until he is allowed out into the bigger world.

Patience is a great trait to have, one that at times I do not have! My kids will vouch for that. When you have told him for the 99th time in the space of a morning to get his paws off the sofa and he just snaps at you and goes back up it can be deflating. My doodlemania friends say it will get better and all this hard work will be worth it in the end I have to have faith and believe them. I did have a Japanese Akita many many years ago but he was a puppy over 14 years ago and I don’t remember much of the stress from that. My only rationalising is that it is like child birth, you forget the pain and here I am doing it all again.

He really bit my hand today. We were playing with the big football (which is nearly as big as him but he can get a grip on it and carry it) Our normal game is that I eventually get it out of his mouth and he does a sit or down and then I throw it the length of the garden and he goes like a rocket after it and brings it back for another tug of war. He gives a good fight for me getting it back off him and my next training after the lead will be ‘let go’. But today let go wasn’t going to cut it and I was attempting to get it out of his mouth. I put my hand near the ball and almost got it when he let go and went for my hand catching his sharp teeth on my hand and as I pulled it away it scraped deeply across the palm of my hand. I can tell you it really hurt and drew blood. That ended our play session and I think the rest of my street would have heard me yelping!

I do think that my neighbours, whose back door faces ours in a terraced street, may be getting a bit tired of us standing at the back door shouting scooter in from the garden, or if our back door is open they can probably hear us shouting ‘NO!’ or ‘OFF!’ They must think we have gone loopy or they may have just had enough of losing their peaceful garden, but either way they seem to keep their back door closed more often haha. These are one of the neighbours that are going to let Scooter out for a toilet break while I am at work. I work part time 4 days a week but 5 hours is a long time not to be let out so they and another neighbour are going to let him out in the garden. I am still not sure whether to ask them to feed him or feed him when I get back at 2.45. He will be fed at 8am and 8.30pm so the middle of that is 2pm so I don’t think 2.45 will be too late. I will have to play it by ear I think.

I asked another www.doodlemania.co.uk member how much their doodle weighed at 10 weeks so I could compare Scooter to a standard labradoodle. Scooter was 5.2kg and the standard was 7.1kg. There is a slight difference of course as Scooter is a mini and I will know more if I get to meet up with them seeing them side by side. There is only a weeks difference in age.

By the way my beloved camera is playing up so not many new photos at the moment. If you are all like me you will miss any new photos as I love seeing the progress as well as reading it. I will try and rectify this soon. I have been looking to upgrade my camera but in actual fact when reading up on them I have begun to realise that the camera I have is ideal for me anyway so I may just get the same again haha. Better the devil you know and all that.

Day 15, testing the boundaries

Two steps forward, one step back.

IMG_6642.JPG

You think that you are getting somewhere and you take your foot off the gas. A couple of mornings of being vigilant and he is becoming house trained and then you get cocky and he does his business in the house. The reason? You don’t see that he wants to get out or you think he has only just gone out and not done anything so you don’t think he needs to go toilet. He soon shows you! (literally!) He does go and stand by the door to let you know he wants to go out in the garden but only 80% of the time is for toileting. 20% of the time is that he just wants to go and play out there. He will just go and lie down or go and play with his ball in the bushes.

Now this is all fine when the weather is good but when you are standing out there in the rain with your sandals on (as they are the only thing by the back door) then it isn’t funny. And then he has to come in and get his paws dry. He knows straight away to come and sit on this towel but the next stage is to let us dry his paws. He has learnt the command paw and it is quite cute when he is sitting there all innocent and offering you his paw when you are standing in front of him.

We took him to have his second Jab today and he was so funny in the car. he kept standing on his back legs looking out the back of the car. The people behind must have thought it amusing too. He was such a good lad in the vets considering I couldn’t put him down on the floor. There were a few big dogs there and one very noisy deep barking Labrador. Scooter kept looking at him and looking around at the other people and dogs of all sizes taking it all in. I cannot wait to take him out and about properly and open his eyes to the big wide world. He also had his microchip today. He didn’t like that one bit as that was a big needle but its all done now.

Only 7 more days until he can come out with us!!

The children have gone to visit their dad this weekend as they do every fortnight so its just me and Scoots for 24 hours. It can be very tiring keeping an eye on him 24/7 so if I have had enough then I cheat and give him something to keep his attention like a carrot or his puppy Kong toy filled with mashed banana so I can get on with other things without worrying. It is also a nice break when he flakes out by my feet, its nice to have my very own feet warmer but you sure feel it when he moves!aug15a.JPG

As I was kid free I decided to meet up with a friend for a couple of hours which meant that Scooters routine was going to be all out of sorts unfortunately. This meant that his feeding time would be when I would be out so I had to feed him half before I went and half when I returned. He was such a good boy as he settled in his crate. We both came back to my house a couple of hours later and he was so excited to see my friend for the second time. He just would not leave her alone at all. He could probably smell her cats. He kept jumping up on the sofa next to her, biting her cardigan, chewing her shoes. He really did show me up as only a scamp puppy could. I don’t think I have said the word No! so many times since having him in our home. I should have kept taking him out so he knew that behaviour took him away from us but being a novice I didn’t do that as I stupidly thought he would settle down on his own and learn that was not good behaviour. I will know better next time though won’t I? (hopefully!)

Having a late night does not mean I am going to get a Sunday lie in though does it? Dog owners no longer have these luxuries!

Day 14, 10 weeks old

Another week gone by and I do see the difference in him already. He is definitely getting bigger. When he stands on the fire place he is four bricks high. When he fully stretches out to sleep with all his legs outstretched he could be a draft excluder!

We started the 3 meals a day routine today. It feels weird giving him more food in one day but he gulped down his brekkie. His 2pm meal wasn’t so much, he ate most of it but left a small bit which I picked up after 10 minutes (as the good puppy book says) He did eat all his tea though. I worry that I am giving him too much food but we will soon see if his weight is OK when we go to the vets tomorrow for his 2nd jab and micro-chipping.

He still didn’t enjoy his lead training today. He lay flat on the floor, and I have read that you don’t try and force them. You need to wait until they are comfortable. Am trying to do this twice a day and then we will progress to out in the garden.

He chewed his water bowl today and while it is still usable I need to get him a new one now. Grr.

My house used to be covered in kids things and I was forever telling them to put them away now my floor is constantly covered in dog toys. You can try and pick them all up and put them in the box but he will not think twice about getting them all back out again so the house is just how he likes it!

His funny antics just amuse us all the time. He can do his doodle dash and have a mad half hour and then he will run at full speed to you and flop at your feet as if he is running to hide from something. He just stops dead after rushing all around.

I am dreading taking him to the vets today as he will want to get down and run around which of course he is not allowed to do. I think he will struggle on my lap but he was OK last time. This time though he is more confident and wants to do his own thing.

My nose makes me unique but I’m still gorgeous!

If you have noticed on his photos his nose is not completely black. It is slightly pink at the top of it. The breeder told me that he was born with a pink nose but that it is slowly turning black. Well it doesn’t seem to be changing completely black but we still think he is absolutely gorgeous and we have no issues with our multi coloured nose Doodle :)

His coat will change quite often over the next few months. Being on www.doodlemania.co.uk I have watched many doodle pups grow up and change dramatically. One minute they look like they have a shaggy coat and very much like a Labrador and the next month they have a wavy coat which then changes to curly poodle type. You will almost never know exactly what coat your pup will have nor will you know what colour he will end up being. Some doodles start completely black and end up silver, and chocolates can end up ‘cafe au lait’ Scooter starts as apricot but will more than likely go a creamy white colour the same as his chest is now. I do hope he keeps some of his apricot colour though.

Day 13, Wassis!

Considering I have been off for nearly two weeks I haven’t got much done in the house or garden! My time has been spent mostly with scooter being his shadow when he is not being mine.

He has slept most of the morning today even though he didn’t get let out of his cage until 7.10am. It is nice to have a break from watching his every move. It is very very tiring having to get up and see what he is up to all the time, watching for any sniffing and taking him out in the garden only for him to go and sit on the grass and sometimes he goes to the closed door and you think oh he needs the toilet, he is asking to be let out but oh no he just wants to go out and play.

His favourite past time =
belly rubs.

Scooter has realised if I say ‘Wassis’ meaning whats this? Then it normally means a treat. If he is in the garden and I stand at the door and shout wassis he 90% of the time comes running, the same if he is in the kitchen and I shout it he comes bundling back into the lounge. Word should be ‘come’ so will try and change that in time. I know you are supposed to be consistent so as not to confuse the poor lad. 

I have given up on the command ‘stay’, he is perhaps too young to learn this at the moment, so I have changed to ‘wait’. He now has to go on his towel to get his food and has to wait 5 seconds. He did well with this today.

He so loves his belly rubs, almost as soon as you stroke him he lies on his back for a tickle! who is training who here?

I thought I would try him with a carrot to chew on today. He lay and chewed on it while I made dinner for the rest of us. Every so often I would take it off him so he knows I am boss and he doesn’t get any possession issues. He seems ok at the moment.

Also carrying on with my distraction tactics, I gave him an empty milk carton to play with while I sorted out the dishwasher.

We tried him on the lead today and he was having none of it apart from wanting to chew it. He did follow us when we had treats though.

Tomorrow he will be 10 weeks old and we are putting his meals down to 3 a day. So 8am, 2pm and 8pm (this last one might do down to 7pm depending on how it fits with kids clubs when they go back to school)

Day 12, multiple personalities

Scooter was letting us have a lie in today. I woke at 6am like you do when you have a new born baby waiting in bed for them to stir and wake. I listened out for him but heard nothing. I have my phone alarm set for 6.30 in case I am in a deep sleep and don’t wake to hear him but even then he wasn’t making any noise. Another 10 minutes and I can just about hearing him playing in his crate but not whining. I wait another 10 minutes (laziness and making the most of it!) and eventually got up at 7am. I am hoping that this will be the normal time for getting up as this is the time we would normally be getting up for work and school.

How can you be cross with this innocent face?

Nippy Scooter has been quite bad today for biting. He has hurt both me and my daughter today. It’s only a sharp swift pain but it can really hurt when he catches you. Apparently the best thing to do when he goes to bite is to give him something better to chew on but when he catches you unawares your natural reaction is to shout out in pain. I have read also that you could whine like a puppy would and he is supposed to stop but Scooter thinks we are playing and comes back to do more damage!

My daughter accidently dropped some of his treats outside on the path today. I managed to get them all up or so I thought until he went out and was sniffing like mad because he could smell them and managed to find a couple more. It was almost as if I had set him a treasure hunt!

Bush monster has now also become the digging dynamo! He has found his passion to dig unfortunately. I do have muddy parts along the wall of my garden that I do want to eventually put a flower border but I have a feeling that digging dynamo is going to put a big stop to that as he also does his business along there. I don’t mind him doing it in the mud as its easier to pick up then on the grass. I am thinking of starting to put his lead on so that he only does his business in one part of the garden. Kill two birds with one stone so to speak  – getting used to the lead and using one area for toileting. I can only imagine his delight at the lead!

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