Puppy Socialization Diaries – Day 16!

Wow, has it really been 16 days already since I met my little man Cuba?  Time flies when you’re having fun (and trying to retain your sanity as a puppy mom)!

Today was a relatively mellow day, all things considered.  We played a lot, snuggled a lot, went on a few walks, and instructed an orientation together with Mokie.

Cuba probably met a total of about 15 new people today, including two bicyclists, two young children (one two, one six), two adolescents, two skateboarders, two people in wheelchairs, and a lady walking with a cane.  He also experienced people coming up to greet him at night time/in the dark.

One of our walks was down Court St, a rather busy street for this small city.  Motorcycles, 18 wheelers, dump trucks, motorized scooters, and many cars and trucks whizzed by.  Cuba acted like he didn’t notice any of them and kept trucking along like a good boy!

On our second walk of the day, we went looking for (and found) construction in the neighborhood!  Sounds of hammering, saws, other power tools, people climbing on ladders, throwing remnants into dumpsters and trucks with loud, crashy noises, and all that jazz!

After all that excitement, Mokie, Cuba and I took a ride down to the classroom for an orientation session.  He was a very good boy in his crate and did fantastically when I did a demo of shaping with him.  I often think it’s not fair that I use Mokie as my shaping demo-dog at orientations because she’s so clicker-savvy she makes it look magical (and it is!), and have wished for a less clicker savvy, slower moving dog.  For now, I have that in Cuba!  While Mokie picks up a new behavior in relatively few clicks, Cuba is a “green dog” and takes longer to learn a new behavior.  He’s still learning the game and figuring out that offering behaviors really pays off around here!  Nonetheless, I had fun shaping him to interact with a large, hard plastic ball and he did very well. He also showed off his newly developed Buja Board skills – all four paws, good boy!

We finished out the day with a little work on bite inhibition, sit, down, spin in both directions, targeting, kenneling up on cue, name response, and handling in a few different sessions.  Then we played for a bit and Cuba got a nice massage before crashing in his crate for a while.

He’s really developing into a fine young puppy.  In addition to being devastatingly handsome, he’s a bright dog with a confidant, brassy, playful attitude.  He likes working and learning, meeting new people and dogs, and all sorts of new experiences. It’s a lot of fun to watch him grow and learn – I hope you have half as much fun following his socialization adventures!

Until tomorrow, friends!