Monday, 5 September 2011

Bringing Puppy Home

We just brought our newest family member home Thursday night and already we have fallen in love with him. He is a rottweiler, german shepherd and lab mix and is 8 weeks old. I have quickly come to realize that having a puppy is very much like having a baby. Marlow keeps us up at night, lets us know when he has to go, when he is hungry and when he wants attention. He sleeps more than he is up and just the sight of his puppy face makes us smile.

The first night I felt like crying as that is all that Marlow did. We bought an oversized crate with a divider and set it up right away. While he took a puppy nap we moved him into the crate to try and get him use to the concept of it. As soon as he woke though he was not happy - although the door was wide open he cried and cried and cried and I knew right away that this would be a long night!

We then fed him his meal and about half an hour later took him out for his first walk. Now generally a walk means you walk - this is not what occured. Marlow just sat there looking up at us refusing to move,  his butt firmly planted on the ground. After much coaxing he began to venture - an hour and a half later we successfully went pee but no number 2.

We came inside and played for a bit and then put him in his crate thinking that we had tired him out enough for him to sleep. How wrong I was! Marlow cried and cried and cried - 20 minutes turned to an hour and hour to 2 and so forth. I began to worry that the people across the hall from us or above us would complain due to the "noises" that were coming out of this small pup. I moved him into one of the cat carriers we had (which is oversized for my cats but perfect for him". I have heard that it is important to keep to routine and that eventually he will adapt to the crate at night. Well this was not "that night" - I put in earplugs and prayed for enough sleep to get me through the next day.

The next morning our walk was a little more like a "walk" but with every step he continued to whimper and cry. He remained very close to my every step and I had to be careful not to step directly on him but we made it around the block.

It has now been 3 days since we brought puppy home. He is whimpering a lot less - only when he can't see us. He still hates his crate and seems to hate walking as well. We go outside, he does his job, gets lots of praise and then he firmly plants his butt on the ground as if to say "ok I did good now can we go home". This routine occurs no less than 6 times a day and I am hoping he adjusts to "walking" shortly as I do enjoy getting out more as well.

He is good with the cats  but they seem a little more hesitant about him. They are curious about Marlow while he is sleeping and will slowly approach him when he is awake but as soon as he gets into play mode that cats hide up high.

A puppy is a lot of work but worth it in the end -he is not just a pet but a family member and I cannot wait to see his growth and success over the next few months.

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