Rewarding Times

The sunshine brings back such happy memories of being on the beach with Jake, Leo and Truly. I still miss them enormously, and think of them daily. Little mundane activities trigger memories of picnics and holidays. I try to focus on the good times we had, rather than thinking about their final days.

On a less melancholy note, Zeke is keeping me busy. He’s growing so quickly and developing such a lovely mature and confident personality. We’ve been gradually increasing the duration of our walks, and moving towards busier areas. We walked over a footbridge above a busy road this week, plenty of treats in hand, but he quite happily trotted beside me. Not at all fazed!

As Zeke’s got bigger he’s decided he can jump up onto the sofa. Not great as he’s not meant to do anything high impact. Meanwhile, I’ve been teaching him to settle on a day bed, I move it around so he can see me (working), and he lays on it while savouring a filled Kong or his Licki mat. I gave him some peanut butter for the first time this week, 100% peanuts (no salt or sweeteners). I say “settle” and “bed” and he will now lay on it. But sometimes he bounces off the sofa first. What can I say?! Monkey. I ignore the rebound, and reward once he lays on his bed.

I’ve bought another couple of puppy Kong’s I can pre fill with cooked chicken and sweet potato mash, and freeze. This tends to give me about 30-45 mins distraction time to do other things. I don’t leave Zeke unattended with a Kong or Licki mat, as he’s likely to chew and swallow bits of them. He’s still only a baby at 15 weeks.

I’ve signed Zeke and I up for puppy classes, I know I’m a trainer… but I’ll be staying shtum as I want him to experience the ultimate distraction of having other dogs around. It’s going to be a great learning experience for me too, I’ll let you know how it goes!

Until next time

Jen

Ps there are already lots of blogs and posts about dogs and toxic items this time of year (chocolate, dried fruits, spring bulbs in the garden etc etc). Here’s the media page for Dogs Trust where you can find out more.

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