Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The Big Great Dane Puppy

I didn't think we were going to work with the Great Dane puppy since it sounded like the owners were undecided, so you can imagine my surprise when I got home from Luke's therapy appointment to find a strange dog in our house!

I asked Dennis why he didn't text me to let me know. "I thought you'd like to be surprised," he said.

Well, I was.

I wish I could say it all went smoothly, but it didn't. Joey and Ace didn't like this new dog on their turf. I had already known that Joey would react hysterically, being the nervous dog that he is, but I was surprised with Ace. He bit the puppy. Yep, bit him! Within the first 15 minutes!

Willy (the puppy) was super excited to see Ace. (We still had Joey in the other room.) Ace was fine with him at first, but then Willy made the mistake of putting his paw on top of Ace. That is very rude in dog-manners. I pulled Willy away, but Ace followed. Then Willy put his paw on top of Ace again. This time, Ace lunged at him and got him in the face.

It was just a little nip but it drew blood. I thought to myself, "well, there goes my dog training career!" Not what you want as a first time experience.

We called the owners and they didn't seem very concerned. And no, I didn't have a chance for them to sign a liability contract because I didn't know we were even getting the puppy in the first place! But you can bet if they bring the dog again, they will be signing one.

For the rest of the day, things went a little better but I won't lie, it was hard! A puppy is hard enough, but a puppy that is bigger than your full grown Lab is even harder!

This puppy is sitting down and he's almost as big as Anna!
We kept Ace and Joey separated from Willy for the rest of the day. Ace and Joey made a big fuss about it, whining and barking the whole time.

I gave them a break by putting Willy in Ace's crate for a while so that Ace and Joey could relax a little. (Me too.) Other than that, I just took Willy for a lot of walks or had him in the backyard with me.

Willy, trying to sniff Ace and Joey, who are on the other side of the door.
By the end of the day, we felt more comfortable with having Willy around. He was a good listener, for a puppy. He had good bite threshold too (how hard he bites). I kept him with me all the time, but he was really good with the kids.

I worked with him for a little bit with training, but his owners have done well with teaching him all the basics.

I have no idea if he will be back or not. I asked his owner (the girlfriend) if he did come back, to bring some toys or bones for him. I had forgotten how much puppies need to chew, and he had gotten pretty nippy.

Other than that, my first dog sitting experience went ok. Not great, but hopefully next time (if there is a next time), it will go better.

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