So today I am at work, which is pretty standard for a Monday… What is not standard is the fact that I have a 10 week old puppy at home. Probably whining and howling if our first two days are anything to go by.
I brought Archer home on Saturday, and keeping in mind I need these people not to call dog control on me, I took Archer over and introduced him… She wasn’t all that impressed. Her exact words were” He’s very cute, but it’s not for me” (meaning dogs) and “I hope he’s not going to be loud” (because she’s home through the day.)
Not a very promising start if we’re honest.
Following that I introduced the dog to the house and so commenced the whining. He’s not used to being alone, so whenever he thought I was leaving he’d howl and throw himself at the flimsy gates I had through he house to keep him contained.
On a related note: I have a new chunk of paint missing in my dining room, and laundry door frame where my first trials of a containment space went massively awry. It looks like I’ll be getting a lot of practice at patching and painting.
When bed time finally came we established a new routine using a crate that goes like this:
- Puppy goes into crate. I wait till he’s resigned to being in the space, and is calm and sitting. I shut the door.
- Puppy whines, and escalates to howling and attempting to climb out of the crate.
- I sit on the bed so that the dog can see me (don’t ask what happens if he can’t see me. I’ve blocked it from my memory). I am quiet, and no eye contact. I am and calm, and assertive. (I’m not actually calm and assertive, this is just what I chant to myself to stop from losing my temper.)
- The mental-case cat – utterly fed up with the lack of attention – sits on the other side of the room meowing.
- Puppy takes an hour or so to calm down. Cat spends the time nipping my hands and hair to (I assume) spur me into shutting the dog up so that he can sleep.
- Cat nipping results in him being thrown off the bed. The cat does not leave the room though, because he is batty, instead he stands beside the bed and howls with indignation.
- Puppy whines for another few minutes before grumbling himself to sleep. You have not heard a more resigned grumble than an Archer is in his crate and Not Happy grumble.
- Cat gets back on the bed and curls up as close to my face as possible, preferably under the covers, with the good pillow, because he’s annoyed at the fact he’s had to listen to this performance.
- Archer looks adorable, because who doesn’t love a sleeping puppy? (NOTE: Resist urge to look closer on pain of death, because he will not stay sleeping. Also no leaving the room, or going to brush your teeth.)
- Stay frozen on the bed hoping neither cat nor puppy wake up again.
- Rinse and repeat for the midnight bathroom break.
This whole experience is confirming for me that I’m not really cut out for calmly and rationally dealing with kids. Also? Much harder than the dog whisperer, and my assumptions made it seem – for starters Cesars magic Shh noise is totally TV Magic.
I don’t know how I glossed over the howling dog at midnight aspect of puppy ownership, because guys? It’s a thing. Puppies should come with a warning label that says “Yeah, you;re going to wonder if you made the wrong decision in 3, 2, 1 GO.”*
*For clarity sake I’m pretty sure we’ll be fine, it’s just when Archer is going, and Batz is going, and I’ve had less than 4 hours sleep the world is not a shiny place. I also am not sure what the damage is from Archer being at home during the day. it’s worrisome. And worrying. Also: I am WORRIED.
My second day with Archer was a trail run for work, so I left him inside, and went to get groceries. Archer then demonstrated that he’s small enough to get through a cat door. I discovered this while driving back in through the gate, and having a heart attack as my puppy came barreling up to meet the car. He has more cute than sense at this stage in his life. Knowing my track record with animals this may be a trend that continues through his life.
Becks came out to see the house, and the Puppy whined for two hours and climbed all over her. That’s a habit we’ll be breaking sooner than later I hope. I think in future Archerpants gets no attention from visitors until he’s sitting and quiet.
We went for a five minute walk which went surprisingly well. He’s learning to heel really quickly, which is the main idea. I want to start him out polite on the leash while he’s still little and malleable.
Anyway. I have work, and my lunch break is likely over. And I have a puppy at home possibly raising holy hell. (I’m going to go ahead and admit that this was absolutely the wrong time to get a puppy. I should have got him over Christmas, so that I could have a few weeks at home to ease him into being alone, and sleeping… and perhaps greasing up the neighbor with copious glasses of celebratory Christmas wine.