The dog days are over

August 30, 2011 lauracartwrighthardy
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I’ve been a baaadddd dogmom. (Bad Laura, bad girl.) And John’s been a bad dogdad. It’s been hot. We’ve been lazy/busy. And Zuzu has gotten bored and desperate for attention.

Consequently, she tries so exuberantly to shake hands or high five, that she can knock you into next week. She’s still only 10 months old, but she’s a giant of a girl. Her brain is immature, but her body’s Goliath.

Zuzu, in front, is a 10-month-old giant. Dainty Tess is 6 years.

In her short little life, it’s been hotter than Hades, so she’s not gotten to walk nearly enough as she should. (I cannot do 5 a.m. walks. You wouldn’t want me to, either. I’m not nice at 5 a.m.) As a result, her nails have gotten longer than they should, and we haven’t trimmed them lately, for a few reasons: 1) The last time resulted in bleeding, and that’s so traumatizing for the parents, it alway takes months to recover. 2) She doesn’t like it and misbehaves a bit, which makes Tess the enforcer go on high alert, which is never fun. And, 3) Zuzu gets scared and does her “whoopsy-pee,” which, for an 80-pound puppy, is not cute.

Mixed in with me working almost full-time this summer, those factors and inconsistent puppy-training reinforcement have resulted in a puppy who’s a bit out of control.

But that stops now. We’ve resumed walking, since the weather’s calmed down; we have a date with Dad and the clippers tonight (for Tessie, too); Zuzu is bigger than Tess now, so the enforcer is not so quick to jump in; and we’ve already had a clicker-reinforcement session this morning, even before Mom’s workout.

The jostling over who gets to chill in front of the air conditioner after walks has stopped, too. The girls are now content – happy even – to relax together on the bed. Leaves little room for us, but Tess prefers to sleep on alert in the living room. Only Zuzu sleeps the entire night in the bed with us.

So we spoil her. That’s what kids are for.

No much room for Mom and Dad, but the girls are certainly happy.

But Zuzu loves to please – she’s a people- and fellow-dog-dog. (I typed “person” first. Oh, dear.) Getting her back on track shouldn’t take long. We don’t want her to lose her exuberance for life (or her Toby-reincarnated behavior), just her tendency to do collateral damage via said exuberance.

I’ll keep you posted on how it’s going. Wish us luck.

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Entry Filed under: Dogs

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Katherine  |  August 30, 2011 at 10:07 am

    We’ve been neglecting our dogs too. And they’ve both been on meds. To get the one to take meds requires peanut butter. So they’re both in need of exercise. Your dogs are just too cute.

  • 2. lauracartwrighthardy  |  August 30, 2011 at 10:09 am

    Thanks. Zuzu is just learning to howl, too, so we hope she’s maturing. They’re fun, but what a mess we live with! Good luck with yours.


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