Bringing Up Baby: One Month Home

Chewy has been home one whole month!

I looked at the calendar this morning at work and my jaw dropped. No way it has just been a month. To think this little 6 pound pup (2 pounds heavier than when I brought him home!) has had such a profound effect on me is astounding.

His personality is really starting to develop. Chewy is a sassafras! That little boy is silent, except for when he is displeased, to which he will kindly inform you with the smallest whimpers, little growls, or hybrid bark/howls that inevitably make me laugh because they are so cute. It’s hard to ignore such an adorable ball of fluff (so as to not encourage that behavior). It’s downright impossible to ignore when I am eating food.

Chewy was born a foodie. I have never, in all my years of being around dogs, never met a dog so dead-set on food. I had read prior to getting Chewy that Havanese were food-motivated, but what I didn’t realize is that they are food-wired. He will throw the sassiest tantrums when I’m eating. He gets downright emotional when he hears a treat bag open, its the closest to happy crying I have ever heard in a dog.

I will say an amazing benefit to this has been his ability to pick up tricks and commands. As long as treats are involved, Chewy will learn whatever he needs to know to get more. So far, he has learned sit, down, roll, stand, stay, and come. I hesitate to advance too far, since I have read its not recommended to train dogs younger than six months. Anyone know more about this that could lend some advice? He absolutely loves to train, and when in a focused mindset, is unstoppable at completing his tricks. And it really has helped his manners, since he now knows when it is meal time, he has to sit and stay before he gets his food, rather than jumping around in dizzying circles like he used to do.

Potty training has really progressed. We are having less and less of an issue with peeing in the house, and that really is because I’m learning to pay better attention to him. There are the ever so subtle signs that he needs to go, and it is a small window, but right now we have about an 85% chance of catching it when he roams the house.

However, I started bringing his ex-pen out into the living room on the weekends and on weeknights and the amount of accidents has severely decreased. He will either use the puppy pad or sit and stare/whine at me that he needs to go. I think part of it has to do with the understanding of space. It may be that our apartment, while small, is still just a little too big, especially for a little one who has really started to love marking.

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Instead of one big “go” when I take him outside, Chewy now has five smaller “go”s along the way, which has actually been a big motivator in getting him to enjoy walks. Really from day one, Chewy was not a dog that liked being outside. He sprints when he realizes we are headed home. But, he does seem to be developing more enjoyment for smells along the sidewalk and running through the grassy areas near our apartment.

Chewy LOVES to run. Zoomies are a real treat in our house now, when Chewy hits that point of excitement he can’t contain and just all-out sprints around the house in circles. It is adorable. He gets his 4 month old shots tomorrow at the vet (4 months is 4 days away?!?!) and so he will finally be ready to go to the dog park! I can’t wait to let him off leash so he can sprint around at his full speed (to which I can barely keep up with… maybe should have named him Usain Bolt!) 

His need to chew has calmed down slightly, at least, he is very good about going and grabbing a toy when he needs to chomp on something. There are still a few trouble items like my clothing (he LOVES fabric — if anyone knows of any dog toys that play to the love of fabric that aren’t my work clothes let me know!!), carpet fuzz, and whatever scraps may fall on the floor while we are cooking. But mostly my clothes.

I think it is clear this little guy has stolen my heart and, even though he’s a fur-child, I will always consider him my first-born.

with lots of puppy x’s and o’s,

raina

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