2009 16/05

Life with a dog – Week 1

On Mother’s Day we brought Jasper home. Unsure of how things were going to go, I think our first week has gone pretty well. Tim never really had a dog growing up, although I think his parents would disagree with that, and I only had one — a Lhasa Apso named Gizmo that we got when I was in middle school. Aside from potty training, we never really trained Gizmo. He just lived with us and became part of the family. So this is all new to us in a way.

Here are some of the highlights from the week:

The first night Tim slept on the couch with Jasper curled up next to him. The next few nights we put Jasper in his kennel and Tim slept next to the kennel with his hand reaching inside the kennel so Jasper could feel him there. Now Jasper sleeps in his kennel in the living room and whines when he needs to go out. At some point in the night or in the early morning Tim ends up sleeping on the couch next to the kennel because Jasper is not so excited to be in the kennel again.

Potty training seems to be going okay. I take him out every time he wakes up and after he eats. He knows to scratch on the door when he wants back in but he has yet to learn to go to the door when he needs to go out. The biggest battle is getting him to do his business in the grass rather than on the front porch, sidewalk, or back deck. For some reason he would much rather poop on the deck than anywhere else. He even, when I let him out the front door, will run around to the back yard, go up onto the deck and then poop. All the time passing through perfectly good grass. Any suggestions there?

And how are the girls taking to him? Abbi loves him. Absolutely loves him. It actually surprised me how she has taken to him. She loves that he plays with her, loves playing soccer outside with him, and makes her personal responsibility to give him treats when he deserves them. She was absolutely distraught when her daddy decided to take Jasper to work with him for the day on Friday. Lots of tears. At one point during the day she asked if we could go buy a *new Jasper* because she missed hers.

Zoe is a much different case. The first few days she really didn’t like Jasper. He would nip at her and knock her over and she was not thrilled with that. I think she’s warming up to him now though and he is getting better at leaving her alone. Now she likes to squat down near him and babble at him. She even tries to say his name.

Mostly though I think the girls like his kennel. Zoe likes to pick up toys, or anything really, and puts them inside the kennel. They like to go in there and play, like it their own little fort, but we are discouraging that since we want the kennel to be Jasper’s personal place. On Monday I even caught Abbi laying down in the kennel with Jasper while he slept. It was hard to make her get out because it was too cute.

After a week I think he’s secured himself a spot in the family. He seems to be a good dog. He loves to snuggle, rides in the car well, and even listens and obeys most of the time, more than the kids do anyhow.

Screen shot 2009-09-22 at 3.19.53 PM

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