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New do

Jack got a new do. Although his skin infection is cleared up, the vet suggested I keep his hair short for a while since he has some dry skin that we want to alleviate.

Jack's new do

I sure could have taken him to a groomer, or to be groomed at a pet store, but decided to do it myself. I’ve cut my dogs’ hair for years, and figured I could do Jack’s too. He’s very patient and I did okay. There’s always a bit of trimming to do after the major work and this is no exception, but overall, he looks pretty good. I tried to get a decent photo that showed both his sweet little face and his body, but he would absolutely not cooperate.

We visited the vet for a checkup on Monday. Although he had gained a pound instead of losing any, overall she was pleased with his progress. In another few days we’ll be done with the current bag of dog food and open the ‘healthy weight’ variety; hopefully that will help.

I’m having a little struggle trying to balance his food with his treats. He’s been getting a lot of treats lately. Why? Jack has now been to 2 weeks of puppy class, and training involves lots of food rewards. But he’s making great progress!

Jack made it from his semi-isolated/protected area out into the big room with all the puppies and their owners about half way through the first class. He totally surprised me by being relaxed most of the time. He accepted treats from the trainers; although they dropped them on the floor near him, he allowed them to get close.

During the 2nd class he was in the big room with the puppies the entire time. At the end of class the activity was that the owners who weren’t holding leashes (some dogs came with 2 people) were to approach each leashed dog and give him/her a treat only after the dog sat. Jack was given an exception…the goal was that he’d allow them to get close enough to give him the treat, even if he didn’t take it from their hand but they dropped it on the floor. He allowed all 4 people to do that.

But here’s the most amazing part…between the first 2 classes he accepted treats from 4 ‘strangers.’ One of them was my son, who Jack has certainly seen before but has been terrified of. One was a woman we’d bumped into previously on a walk, another was a woman we’ve made acquaintance with while walking who came to visit us. All of those people used the treat I’d handed them from my pocket.

The most amazing one? The mechanic who fixed my flat tire! Strange person, a man, a strange environment, a treat he’d never had before! I was blown away!

He’s also gotten reasonably good at stay and is learning come, both with a 6 foot leash. Much more practice is needed for both to be ingrained, but we’ll get there. Still, most important to me is his confidence, his willingness to allow other people to approach without running away and hiding.

In addition to working with Jack on his progress, I’ve made progress of my own:

  • I finished the majority of my homemade Christmas presents. That took a few more days but I’m really happy with the results.  15 gifts for adults, 2 for children, 4 for newborns.  Whew!
  • I finished weaving the white warp on KG’s wrap and will start on her charcoal warp tomorrow. While I wait for the plumber to arrive.
  • I got a bunch of Christmas shopping done.  Still some more do to, but the majority is done.
  • My handy neighbor and I have spent some time looking, checking, figuring, and scratching our heads over the cause.  Very unfortunately, in the end we concur that there’s a leak somewhere between the floor of my kitchen and the ceiling of the basement. I assume the fix won’t be easy or cheap, but that’s the reality of home ownership. I just want it taken care of ASAP.

3 comments to New do

  • OMG! Wow on the progress with Jack! I’m so impressed, imagine a strange male with different treats. That is a huge leap for a little unsure dog. You certainly did go to town on finishing those gifts! I had my one warp on in planning since like August…..I am not a fast weaver of things. And bummer on the leak. Those behind walls and under floors are never pleasant to find and fix. Fingers crossed it all resolved easily and reasonably.

  • Peg Cherre

    It IS remarkable about Jack! I can’t tell you how happy this makes me. Does he still have a long way to go in his comfort level with people other than me? Yes, but at least now I have hope that he’ll get there!

    P.S. Although I’m a relatively fast weaver, I didn’t weave the gifts I refer to in the post. I do still have some weaving to do for gifts.

  • Alma

    You were right when you assessed Jack and found him to be bright. He’s learned so much and progressed so far it is – to use your word – remarkable! Good for him!

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