Max (a.k.a. “Peanut”) is staying with us. He arrived this past Friday, and our house has been filled with laughter – and some pretty amazing changes – ever since. The changes involve our dog, Glimmer, who has a lot of trouble being around other dogs. She’s not aggressive; she’s nervous and she lacks confidence in setting boundaries about what she will and will not allow. Max is a 7-month-old Chinese Crested puppy with so much energy that only our cat, Violet, can keep up with him. So, the patience and reigned-in energy he offers Glimmer is incredible; he seems to realize that she needs gentleness from him, so while he constantly invites her to play with him, he only gives her what she can handle. And when they do get playing and she gets too intense with him, he immediately lays down in front of her and gives her calming signals. Once she calms down a bit, they’ll either lay down together, or they’ll resume their play. It’s a beautiful relationship, because Glimmer helps teach Max his basics (sit, stay, etc.), and Max helps Glimmer come out of her shell and have some fun.
Max has a very bad habit of getting underfoot. Yesterday, I was working in my kitchen and I nearly stepped on him. It was time to start teaching him “place”. Thanks to my awesome friend Christine, I was able to video the exercise. He did okay for his first time with this lesson, but as you’ll see when the video is posted later today, Max needs a lot of work on focusing and obeying the “stay” command. He also has an unwanted tendency to get on his hind legs when he’s asked to do something. Today, I’m going to be focusing on correcting those behaviors.
The weather is cool and rainy today, so getting the dogs out for a walk isn’t an option. But that’s okay. There are lots of fun things we can do indoors that will stimulate them and drain out enough of their mental and physical energy to keep them happy. Have a great day, and remember to stay calm and lead on… 🙂