Right before Thanksgiving, we adopted a puppy and named her Pickles. Isn’t she cute?
I mean, who can resist that worried, wrinkled little forehead? Or those big brown eyes?
She is such a sweetie and loves nothing more than cuddling up on your lap and getting a good scratch behind the ears.
The first few days she was here with us, she was quiet as could be. In fact, she pretty much slept all the time! She didn’t really know how to play, and it was clear she hadn’t had much socialization with either people or other dogs.
As the weeks went by, it was obvious that we needed to call in the professionals for training! She is an angel at home, but a terror on the leash. If she so much as catches wind of another canine, it’s over! High-pitched, eardrum-piercing barking, whining, pulling on the leash, and generally just acting like a nuisance.
I was seriously ready to call the Dog Whisperer (and we did download one of Cesar’s audio books – love him!). We decided to enroll Pickles in an “adolescent puppy” obedience class at our local dog agility and training center.
The first class was an absolute nightmare. The instructor ended up putting us behind a big, fabric screen because Pickles was LOSING her mind. She did not stop barking for the entire hour, and I was convinced that we would not be invited back! I was also pretty sure I’d need a Xanax before I could deal with another hour of adolescent puppy training.
Fast forward two weeks later, and it’s like we have a new dog. Pickles has completed 3 out of six classes, and she’s getting better each week! She’s becoming more social with the other pups, is barking much less, and has learned all kinds of tricks (well, the basics). Wanna see?
She can sit:
…and this week she learned “settle,” which is to completely lay back on one hip in a relaxed position. We plan to continue with obedience classes as well as enroll her in “doggie daycare,” which will both help me reach one of my goals for 2012!
Now if she can just learn to vacuum or empty the dishwasher. Then I’ll be really impressed