Adventures of Bill ( guide dog puppy in training) Weeks 11-12
I can’t believe how fast a little black lab puppy can grow. It makes me sad to see how quickly he is growing. This must be how parents feel about their children. We want them to stay little forever. But they don’t, so we continue our pursuit to raise a great pup.
Training tips for 11-12 week old puppy
Bill is the first puppy that we have raised in the summer time. I must admit raising a puppy during the summer has it challenges. We live in North Carolina where the heat and humidity can before unbearable. Puppies dehydrate very quickly so it is important to have access to water at all times. I know what you are thinking, the more they drink the more they “busy” and you are right. I think of it as more opportunities to practice house breaking.
The other challenge that summer brings to raising Bill is the payment. We are to take Bill out to socialize him and practice walking on leash, but when the temperature is 90 degrees with the heat index of 100, it is difficult to put Bill in a hot car and go to the store and walk across a hot parking lot. You should test the payment yourself. I wear flip-flops a lot during the summer so I can easily slip them off and put my foot on the payment for about 10 seconds. If it is too hot for my foot it is too hot for Bill’s feet. Your hand can work just as well. When the payment is too hot, I just pick him up and put him in a grocery cart and push him across the parking lot. We work on walking on a leash when we get in the nice cool air conditioning store. Remember if you can’t take your dog inside then don’t take him with you to the store on a hot day. A car can easily heat up to 110 degrees and cause a heat stroke and kill your dog.
Bill is ready to start learning commands. The next two things I want him to learn is “off” and “sit”. We are getting out more and meeting lots of new people. The first thing that Bill and all puppies want to do is jump on people. When we meet someone I put Bill in a sit. I tell the person waiting to pet him not to pet him until he sits. At this point, I say “sit” while pushing his bottom down. When he sits I say “good boy”. When you first start this training you may have to keep your hand on his bottom while the person is petting him. He will soon learn to sit if he wants someone to pet him. If he breaks the sit, stop petting. The nice things about this approach is Bill can’t jump on people if he is sitting.
I use the command “off” to mean, off of people, furniture or anything I don’t want him climbing on. Whenever he jumps on something I say “no, off” and push him down. When he is no longer on the object I say” good boy”. He will soon learn not to jump on things.
- He is climbing up and down 3 to 4 stairs on his own.
- Bill is learning the command to sit before eating, putting on his collar and leash, and being petted.
- Bill weighs 22 lbs at 11 weeks
- He learned how to play in the pool to keep cool
- He went to my mother’s house and met the rest of the family.
- He has played with large and small dogs and loves them all
- Bill made it through the 4th of July with no signs of fear with all the fireworksHappy 4th of July!