with over 20 years in this amazing place. it's never dull. i hope to enjoy years of exploration here.
Monday, May 9, 2016
rough training day....
nobody is perfect and no puppy is perfect either. generally, when things go poorly...i really just have myself to blame. there was blood shed today though. so it got ugly for sure!
worked last 3 nights. last night the kid next door did not show up to let pups out...grr! so today was a day with me tired after 3 nights and pups amp'd up after 3 nights. things started ok enough on our walk in the bog. i have been trying to do first half really conscience of keeping myself as the lead and not allowing the pups to pull or go ahead of me. the cesar milan walking stick has so far worked pretty well.
today though there was another puppy on the trail. i think we played a bit of cat and mouse. the puppies are for sure having trouble with distractions. it's up to me to try and distract them from the distractions. before the puppy were some kids. one kid got knocked over. so not our best start. just more folks on trail today so that made the training walk a bit more stressful.
in the field it often is a good halfway point to take a break, change to a more loose leash mode and if there aren't many folks on the trail, i'll let the pups off leash. too many folks today so i didn't release them, but Ivy Rose was sure she was free to play. my rules are no chewing leashes and no rough housing while on leash. walking is serious business. she started pouncing on Tusker and i'd try to pull her off and then he'd pounce on her and vice versa. i was not getting it under control. sadly, the other puppy's owners, (the one guy is a pharmacist at my hospital i'm pretty sure). they were watching. i'm sure i looked like a nut case. i wasn't screaming or anything like that....just trying to pull puppies apart over and over.
this clearly ticked off Ivy Rose at some point and her nashing teeth aimed at my hand. at this point i put her in one of those dog on the ground with me being the other dogs mouth gently but firmly on her neck. held her til she calmed down. of course it was the light colored dog...and my blood was splattered all over her by the time our little take down incident was over. no dogs were injured, but there is no way to make this look pleasant. i'm sure this other owner was mildly horrified. after she and Tusker had finally gotten it together and stopped trying to have their rough play game i just sat on the wet grass...did i mention it was raining a bit...both dogs just lay quietly and we chilled for like 10 minutes before heading home.
training in my mind is building on things. what is acceptable this week is not necessarily acceptable next week. just like at first i wanted them just to walk forward on a leash, now i want them to not pull and to be positioned near or behind me. it's also time to start reigning in the rough play. i'm thinking i will limit to the backyard. in the house i need to be more involved and included in play and it should be more directed at toys than each other. Leave it is the lesson of the next few weeks.
we met up for the first class of puppy class. in some ways they will be ahead, but all bets are off once you are in a room full of other puppies. may just see when they do have another puppy class and do the split with the two dogs. unless someone wants to learn how to train dogs and take one in the class while i take the other.
this evening i wanted to make the crappy walk right so we could end on a good note. so i took the dogs for short neighborhood walks individually. Ivy Rose is a quick learner but also seems a bit more anxious when it comes to dogs barking or other things. Tusker is the more dependent one. he's the one who is less okay with the separation from Ivy and Blossom. i'd say Ivy did more stellar today, but there was also a dog tied out that made her anxious so that was probably not the best. i took Tusker a different route.
work week behind me. had one night in ICU, the next night i started with an assignment in PCU and then they switched me up to doing a sitter gig. staying awake in a dark room watching someone sleep is super tough, especially when you haven't gotten adequate sleep anyway. torture. i was getting paid to watch some old movies. first was a Bette Midler flick and then a Streisand flick from the 70's. hadn't actually seen either of those movies. funny seeing them in these old musical type films. so over the top.
my last night was in PICU. i had one patient that was supposed to have a sitter, but they were short sitters so i just had the one patient. covered both. thankfully, the charge gave me breaks and i just went and lay down in a break room and closed my eyes. i always set my phone alarm if i do that just in case i actually do fall into a brief sleep. i had beat my alarm back to my little patients room. the kid was crying with the charge holding her hand....right then my music for my alarm came on...that Brave song. so i just started dancing and singing and next thing you know that kid is cracking up as are the rest of us.
so all my days in the bars are paying off. haha. that is what makes peds fun...you get paid to be goofy some days!!
looked down at some point to see Tusker chewing on something green...turned out to be money. sneaky pups.
this moose was in my hood. lots of moose seem to have moved into town these past weeks. seeing lots of them. they often come into town to have their babies. i've heard of some babies already being born here..so it's starting.
will look at their puppy class schedule after i finish this and see what i can do about splitting them up....as is recommended.
these are the dunes the other day. always a favorite with the puppies. everyone has puppies of late. crazy.
the afternoon walks went well and then at home, inside, i kept working with the pups. will have to get my leave it skills better. was working with Ivy on leaving the cats alone . i still think if i can train them through all the distractions at home..Blossom, the cats and each other, they will come out great.
we did have a rough moment but i do not believe this is some foretelling of the future. the rest of the day Ivy did great. she seemed to be understanding the no rough housing in the house. Blossom will need more reminders of that as well.
they had the list of behaviours for puppy play time after class. i don't want my puppies to be the bully dogs. horrors, right.
not much sleep today either.
self schedule day. so i had to stay up until 9 am for that and then the puppy class met at 12:30.
between that and our puppy park drama...no pool today.
one morning i came home to the smell of urine, it wasn't the pups. i must say...they have had a clean crate every day i've worked. impressive. Blossom actually had peed on herself, in her sleep probably. she did this a few times post spay surgery years ago. when she's super tired. so that meant i needed to give her a wash outside with the hose. i guess there is some medications that can help with this. so i need to set up her appointment at a new vet..just exploring options.
i figured i'd kill two birds and spray the hose around this area of rocks and those wood chips..perhaps keep the pups out...well Ivy loves herself some hose. Blossom can't stand a hose so funny to see the puppy digging it.
this shots are form our short walk out at Byron Glacier.
Blossom is barking to be let in i think. she still gets a bit baffled by the dog door. goofy dog. the pups have it figured out.
got a few pictures of the tail end of that snow/rock slide out there. don't think i posted any of these yet.
gotten used to having my fit bit. get bummed when i forget to wear it on a walk...can't get those miles back on there.
life is greening up. it's lovely
trying to start working getting the fetch gene activated in the puppies. Tusker seems more interested in the fetch and return than Ivy so far. it was a great training tool for Blossom though. she loved to fetch...she'd do almost anything to get me to throw that tennis ball.
the blood has worn off of Ivy's coat already...thank you rain. it was an ugly moment. we all have them. in life you have moments of triumphs and moments of failings. as long as you learn from the failings and correct them...you should try not to be too hard on yourself.
that is easier said than done though. i knew my lack of sleep and therefore my lack of ability to be on cue and as patient as i may have been on another day were directly related to the dogs getting wound up to begin with. i may have picked up on what was happening sooner and it wouldn't have gotten out of hand. i'm sure i could have handled it better on a day with more sleep...but ultimately, the dog did need to be made aware that a bite was not going to be tolerated no matter what the situation was.
rules must be made and followed when you are training dogs...and kids i'm sure.
such cute and sweet faces. i'm sure my mother wanted to knock us all silly from time to time. she didn't. she did often tell a story of walking away from the older boys once...taking a few loops around the block. she knew she was too angry to deal with them rationally.
Ivy was in no way harmed today, it was my blood spilled. she didn't need to yelp at anything it was just a matter of wills and who was in charge...now she knows who is in charge.
it is Mothers day...hope it was a happy one for all the mothers out there. just another day in my world.
i was gifted with a wonderful Mom. i am very grateful for that. she wasn't perfect but in all the most important ways she did an awesome job. i'm about intentions and my mom's intentions were good. it always felt like i had a fan club when she was alive. just always having that one person in life who loved you absolutely unconditionally...without wavering. you just can never find that in any other soul...just your mom.
so many wonderful memories of my mom. mostly, the stuff you take with you are those moments. sure we did vacations and all that, but in life it's the moments that really matter.
the times i lay my head in her lap during church meetings and she gently stroked my hair. the times at the beach when she was truly at ease and filled with happiness. the many songs that would spontaneously erupt from her at any time or place. how she would lean over the sink salting fresh tomatoes and eating them up. the way she cut up the apples. cooking with her. we often cooked together and eventually, i cooked a fair number of the family meals...i still cook the recipes that i learned from her...the way she taught me.
think of her often. i miss talking to her every day. she was the one person in the world who really did relish hearing all those mundane details of my life. now i write it here...i guess. just needing to feel i am heard. it can never be the same though.
i am sleepy though.
hope you are not totally sick of puppy pictures yet
these are from that fun photo shoot with the puppies in my favorite Kincaid tree. not sure what to do tomorrow.
cute in black and white as well.
we had our moment today...thankfully, dogs do not dwell on the past. we have already moved forward.
guess i will let them out in the rain one more time and turn in for the night.
thankful for: A. the forgiveness of dogs B. always learning from today and implementing it tomorrow. C. surviving the night shifts this week. D...my MOTHER!!
have lived in alaska since 1995, lived in ketchikan for 6 years and here in anchorage since 2001. it's a wonderful place and i enjoy getting out nearly daily for a walk/hike/stroll or ramble. enjoy the pics