Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Lots of New Experiences for Nubble

Nubble had his first elevator ride this past week. His puppy raiser, Donna, wasn't sure how he would react, but he didn't seem to mind it at all. Stairs are a different story, though. Donna doesn't have stairs in her house, except in her basement, and Nubble refuses to use them. While they were at a department store, Donna decided to practice stairs with him. Unlike the basement, these stairs were wide and well lit. Nubble was still very intimidated by the stairs. By clicking and treating, Donna got him to put his front feet on the stairs, but he didn't want to put his back feet up. At one point, he bolted up seven stairs and came right back down. By the time they left, he was able to do three or four steps. Donna plans to spend more time working on stairs with him.

He also went to the hair salon, but no, he didn't get his fur done! While Lindsey got her hair cut, Nubble practiced sitting patiently at Donna's feet. She had to tell him to leave it with the hair on the floor and the hairdresser's shoes, but he was very well behaved.

Last week, SSD's Northeast Division went on a puppy outing to Wegmans. Nubble loves grocery shopping, and he really enjoys being out in public. Although he behaves differently when there are other dogs around, he did very well on this outing.

The amount of exercise Nubble gets affects his attention span. He pays more attention to his puppy raisers after he has worked off some excess energy. When Donna took him to a weight loss class, she let him run and play in the parking lot first (being extra careful of cars, of course). After that, he settled quietly at her feet during class. At one point, he crawled under her chair and just watched everyone.

He did have one new experience at the class. Nubble has not been around little kids very much, but he met a toddler that night. The little boy loved dogs and wanted to pet Nubble. Nubble just wanted to jump all over the little boy. Fortunately, the little boy wasn't afraid of this yellow lab and kept coming back to pet him - which was great for Nubble. Donna plans on giving him more experience with little kids.

Donna's brother has two Shih Tzus (Angel and Sparky), and Nubble got to meet them. Donna and her brother introduced the dogs slowly, giving them plenty of time to get used to each other. It went very well, although Nubble just wanted to play with Angel, and Angel just wanted to be left alone. Sparky was a little timid around Nubble, who tends to play rough. But Nubble was not aggressive at all. He just wanted to play. Donna and her brother are going to keep working on it.

Besides going out in public, Donna has been working on loose leash walking. Sometimes Nubble is great about it, and other times he practicatlly pulls Donna's arm out of its socket! But he's starting to get the idea, and soon he'll really catch on.

He now loves to play keep-away. If he picks up something he knows he shouldn't have, he runs away, either to another room of the house or to his crate. If he's outside and off leash, he runs and stops just out of reach. When he plays keep-away, Donna has been ignoring him so he gets the idea that this is not a fun game. So far, it seems to be working, but it is frustrating for the puppy raisers. Gizzy, the family pet, likes to help out. When Nubble takes a glove or slipper in the house, Gizzy barks and growls for him to leave it.

Look for more about Nubble next week!


  1. Sounds great!

    I love your reports about the puppies.


  2. Thanks, Mary! They're growing so quickly, they'll be in advanced training before we know it!