Today Kaline got to meet Baxter, one of my favorite pups. I've known him since he was about five weeks old, and I've always thought of him as very small—until today! Next to Kaline, he looked enormous. He was a little overly rambunctious for Kaline, but the little guy kept going back for more. Baxter was constantly leaping into the pool, which is insanely cute. Any excuse and splash! Kaline was not real into the water (big shock), but I did get him on the first step, and supported him under his already-substantial chest as he did paddles in the water. When Kaline got tired, I held him on my lap a while as Juno and Baxter ran like crazy people all over the backyard, barking gleefully. Baxter could play really rough with her, and they had a blast.
After the playdate, we went to training in the park. My play yard for the puppy came last Friday, so today was the first time I got to use it. I thought it'd be a lot bigger, but it'll do. It's super spiffy, and Kaline took to it pretty quickly. Inside, he had his lunch, a little water bowl, his soft mat, his beehive and his chewy from Anne. A little puppy palace.
|Juno next to the new playpen, with Kaline inside.|
We had three client dogs today, and six trainer dogs, haha. Juno got to do a lot. She did fantastic recalls, never broke once and came in nice and straight. She did retrieves over the bar jump and retrieves on the flat. We did moving downs and moving sits, flip finishes, the "get around" for the first time (I like flip finishes much better), and sequences of sits and downs in the heel position. That's kind of hard for her, because when she does a down, she knows I expect her to roll on a hip and get comfy immediately. But when you're doing quick sits and downs, it helps if she stays in more of a sphinx position. Stuff to work on!
|Juno just gets so stressed out at training ...|
Kaline got to come out a little later and we worked on his basics some more, just in a much more interesting and distracting environment. He did pretty well at focusing on me, at least for the length of his baby puppy attention span. At the end, he got to play off leash with everyone. He really took to Shadow, Kristin's beagle, probably because they're about the same size (Shadow is not really into him). He also really liked her Sheltie, Phi, who has never met a boy dog she didn't adore. They played excellent games of chase. And of course Kaline had to go play with his big hero, Rio, Freddie's big black Lab. It was precious.
I'm so glad Kaline is so social! I know it's normal for puppies to be that way, but with Juno and her predecessor, Angel, they were both rescues who lacked a lot of dog social skills. Juno was so dog-reactive on leash when we first got her that the vet told me to get her evaluated immediately before I got attached and left her with my parents after going back to school. They each had to be taught, and you still kinda had to be vigilant about them and whoever they were playing with. With Kaline, I can just be so much more relaxed. It's not like I don't watch him and his playmates carefully, but I don't worry in the same way.
After training, I brought the pups home. Kaline said hi to Mom and Dad, then promptly trotted to his big crate and conked out. Gawd, he's just so freaking cute! Big day for him tomorrow—we're going to a 4th of July party, where he'll get to meet at least one dog-friendly kid, multiple tall men, and a dog almost his size to play with! Poor Juno has to stay on-leash and out of the play because no one wants to listen to fifteen minutes solid of non-stop barking.