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Hey, girl! I am so sorry that I have not posted in a long time. I was really busy finishing performances of Beauty And The Beast and then I got super busy with school work. “H****** B**** (my school) does not slow down, till the VERY LAST day of classes. Thank you teachers (sarcastic) 🙂 Finally, I was done with school and then it was off to California for a family vacation! Glad to finally be back home (at least for another week).
Today I would like to introduce the newest member of my family, “Vincent”, an Australian Labradoodle. He is MY baby, so no, he’s not up for grabs. We (the Wassy’s) like to call him Vince or Vinny. Vincent is definitely one of a kind. Just seeing another living cutie being happy, makes me smile and laugh.
You might have known that I have a kitty, Lola. Well, when she comes to say “hi” to Vincent, let us just say, it’s not a good situation. Vincent growls at her and tries to jump on her. One day. I think these two are going to be good friends. In the last couple of weeks, I have learned a lot about taking care of dogs and playing with dogs.
Here are some fun things I love to do with Vincent:
1) Run and stop:
One game we play I like to call “run and stop”. A “run and stop” is when you have your dog right beside you on a leash, and you run with him for about 20 seconds, then you stop dramatically and wait for him or her to sit, giving him or her a treat (after they sit)! I really like this because it helps your dog use his energy in good way while also practicing the command, “sit.” This activity also helps your dog learn not to chase people. I want to make sure my dog, Vincent, does not chase others because it can scare people and I don’t want anyone to be scared of Vincent because he’s soo loving!
2) Giving him praise:
Who knew that giving a dog praise could make them listen to you and pay attention. We are using positive reinforcement training with Vincent. They love a nice rub on their ears, paws, head, and belly. I do this all the time to Vincent when I am watching tv or just taking a break. Saying “good boy” or “you’re the cutest” makes your dog listen to you. Keep in mind right when he or she does something to you that you don’t like, stand up, (if you’re not already) turn, and walk away. Come back when your dog is sitting nicely, tell him “good boy” and make sure to treat him or her!
Vincent and I are still working on learning “fetch” with a ball, but he loves to catch and bring back the frisbee. Let your dog run loose but keep the leash on, so if they do try and run away you can catch up to them and step on the leash to stop them. Letting your dog loose is key, it helps them get all their energy out with so little effort from you. Make sure, however, you’re keeping an eye on your dog because you don’t want them to run away. When teaching your dog how to play fetch, it may take some time. If he brings it right back, great, if not keep trying. Keep trying over and over. You may even need to run with them up to the ball and give it to them until they get the idea. This can be exhausting for the dog owners! You might even need a nap!
4) Taking Vincent to public places:
When you take your dog to a public place, it’s fun to see what they do when they see other dogs and when people come up to pet them. A good place to bring your dog (once he is fully vaccinated) is Chagrin Falls, in Cleveland. Now since it is summer, you can spend your night down at Chagrin Falls walking your dog and meeting other dogs. Public places will help your dog play with other dogs and hopefully, he or she will learn the difference between a dog and a person. Because Vincent, I’m sorry to say but I am not one of your chew toys 🙂
A few essentials you need to have for dog walks are:
1) One of my favorites, a bully stick. You never know when your pup might get a little nibbly or growly. Vincent has some mornings (when I take him out) where he must miss his littermates. He thinks I am one of his puppy friends, which heck no, I’m not, I’m human. I make sure, right when he’s going to jump on me, to quickly put the bully stick in his mouth. Saving me from a puppy bite, which can really hurt! 🙂
2) A leash and poop bag. You can buy your poop bags basically anywhere. We use these. They are really used to make ice bags for injuries, but we happened to have a huge supply in our house so we started to use them for Vincent’s poop. They work terrific because they are long and you can easily pick up the poop and then tie in a knot. One tip I have for you is when you are finding poop bags, look for long bags, (my mom made that mistake once and used a little sandwich bag and it was nasty). You also need to have your dog wear a leash on all walks. They can come in so handy, like when your dog tries to run away. Just stomp on the end of the leash and your dog won’t get very far.
3) Always remember to bring a toy like a ball. So when you get outside with your pup you can throw the toy around and get some energy out. Just think, their toys are like our fidget spinners 🙂 A good tip is, don’t play tug-a-war with your dog until they are fully out of their puppy biting stage.
4) T is for Treats. There used to be a doggie bakery at Beachwood mall, but I went to go look for it and the store was gone. I also have walked into a dog bakery before not knowing it was for dogs, “Three Dog Bakery” somehow threw me for a loop. I was looking for a good cookie or cupcake when I was recently in Columbus, but I was surprised when I walked in and realize it was a dog bakery! Treats can help your dog listen to you, and be so good to you. Giving your pup praise and a treat is like heaven for them, SO DO IT! But only when they are good.
Vincents favorite treats are:
1) Shnazzy Chicken Chewstix. He LOVES to chew on these, it really is a treat for him. I honestly don’t see what’s so good about these but I’m not judging. Some good times to give this to your dog is after a really good walking session or times during the day when your lil pup is looking to chew on inappropriate objects 🙂 This is a good treat to make your dog healthy, happy and using his teeth on something better than your couch.
2) Beef liver yum?! Want it now for your pup, you’re in luck, it’s Prime (on Amazon). If Amazon was a person I would adore her. These are very good for your pups. They are all natural and made with real nutrients, all protein and definitely delicious! Vincent would eat these all day if he could, he really likes them.
Vincent really likes these toys, maybe your dog will, too:
1) Vincent loves Doggy Tether Ball because he loves grabbing the ball, pulling on it, letting go and then getting it again. It’s like having a built in playmate. He could probably chase and hit this ball for an hour and not be bored. Something like this is good for active, doggy playtime while you get to relax for a bit longer! If you would like to purchase this toy, it is found at Pet People, online at Amazon, and on Tether Tug.
2) Vincent loves really cuddly, rag doll stuffed animals. If he gets out of hand with me, I just throw a stuffed animal at him. He loves to chew on it, he also loves to drag it around the house. The first few nights he slept here, Vincent even slept with it. This link above for the stuffed animal is one of his favorites. Some of them are very cute, Vincent could totally fit in with them!
Having a dog is so much work that I only help with a small percentage (taking him in the morning for a walk, playing with him, and taking him out in the evening occasionally) but they are truly so dang cute! Just looking at them makes you want to help out, like taking them for walks and rubbing their tummy. This past week Vincent was at doggy boarding school because we were on a trip to Newport Beach, CA, so I have not seen him for a long time. I can’t wait to see how much better doggy manners he has after spending time in all day training. I’ll give you an update soon!
I would like to inform you that I will be going to overnight camp on June 23rd until early-mid August. That is why I won’t be posting anything during that time. Still, contact (email/text) me if you need me and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible when I come back. Thanks for being the best!