Puppy Socialization Diaries – Days 26 and 27

Days 26 and 27 were fairly average socialization days for Cuba.

DAY 26

Day 26 was actually my hubby’s birthday!  This year, for his birthday, Jim wanted a Saint Bernard puppy (check!), a chance to play a reunion rock and roll show with his band mates and best friend, and about three days off from puppy parenting duty to practice and have fun with his friends.

I had plans to go out to see Jim play, so I wanted to make sure Cuba got plenty of activity during the day.  I knew this would help him relax when I was out for a good part of the evening.

I knew Jim’s band would be playing for three hours, and did not want to have to leave the show immediately after he was done playing, as we had many friends in town I hadn’t seen in years that I wanted to catch up with.  I managed to bribe a client and good friend to come check in on him and hang out with him and Mokie later in the evening with a free ticket to get in to the show.

In an effort to help Cuba run off his crazies, my client and friend Nicole Oakley met me at the house with her dog Leila.  The three dogs did a bit of playing at our house and in the back yard, then we got them in the car to go on an adventure.  My business partner was out of town camping with his dogs this weekend but needed me to swing through his place to feed his cat Tony, give Tony his thyroid meds, and clean the litterbox.  In exchange, I get to use his beautiful wooded hiking trails and private pond with the dogs.

Cuba got to be a naked puppy and run around off his leash.  He had lots of fun rolling around in the mud (one of his favorite activities, a fantastic proclivity for a future show dog), chasing Leila around, biting on Mokie’s leash, rolling around in the grass, splashing in the water, swimming around, and chewing on sticks and the bumper toy.  We spent about two hours out at Steve’s place.  Before we left, I carried Cuba out into the middle of the pond and let him swim into the shore, being careful to scoop him up before his paws could touch the bottom in the muddy shallows.

As a result of all this excitement, I had one very sleepy, fairly soggy puppy relaxing in his crate on the way home.

Back at the house, Cuba played tug with Leila for a little bit and then we sat outside in the sunshine for a little while, me just scratching, massaging, grabbing, poking, and tugging him everywhere as he dried out.  He really is quite comfortable with any type of handling I’ve introduced him to, but I have made sure that I let him comfort levels determine the pace at which exposure is increased.

All fun and no naps makes Cuba a very mellow puppy.  I left him crated with two stuffed Kongs when I went to the show.  He was alone in his crate for slightly over three hours when Nicole returned from the show to puppy sit for us.

After the show, we returned home with a few friends that were visiting from out of town and staying with us overnight before making their voyages back home.  Needless to say, Cuba got loads of attention until the wee hours of the morning, when everyone in the house blissfully crashed out to dream of a wonderful day filled with sunshine, fun, and friends.

DAY 27

Today, we were all exhausted from yesterday.  Also, I don’t party like I used to, and was suffering from a lack-of-sleep hangover and feeling completely drained of energy.  Trust me, lack of sleep hangovers are only slightly better than the more conventionally known type of overindulgence hangover.  I felt completely drained and like I had fallen down five flights of stairs, so just enjoyed a morning drinking coffee and hanging out with friends before they hit the road for home.

My mom just returned from spending over a week in Brazil for work yesterday.  She had wanted to come to the Yolk show, but wasn’t feeling well and had to miss it.  Today, Jim and I went up to her house to celebrate his birthday with mom, grandma, my sister, brother, niece, and nephew.

Cuba had a blast playing with Gracie, my brother’s Basset Hound.  He sniffed and chased, but didn’t wrestle with, my mom’s English Springer Spaniel, Bella.  He also sniffed and smooched grandma’s Miniature Poodle, Mickey.  He probably had more fun playing with Grace than I’ve ever seen him have playing with a dog – they chased, wrestled, and played “bitey face/clacky mouth” all over mom’s yard for a couple of hours.  Cuba, obviously, also wanted to roll around in dirt and mulch, which means a bath is definitely in this boy’s future for the next couple of days.

After a wonderful, crazy, exhausting, perfect weekend, we’re all exhausted.  Enough blogging for today – I have to catch up on some work so I can crawl into bed and dream of the wonderful memories that were borne this weekend!