Bailey is back in our lives and this time for good. Life with a puppy is exciting. I find I have very little time to write unless I get up at 5AM when he is still sleeping. Once Bailey is awake it is constant supervision!
I have read all the training manuals and checked out various websites to try and figure out what is the best way to ensure a positive adjustment for Bailey, for Sooke and for us. Of course the data is endless and quite honestly not all that consistent. Then add to the mix the number of people who once they meet Bailey provide tips or insights they have learned about boxers, or about helping older dogs get use to a puppy or about diet.
Let’s take diet. There’s all protein, all whole grains, all raw – not to mention countless varieties and prices for something Bailey basically wolf’s down in seconds without any real interest in whether it is chicken, buffalo or pork. Yes I want a healthy, gasless boxer and I have gathered from my reading that is a challenge. But all the choices make it quite difficult to come to any clear decision.
Then there’s training. Caesar says I need to be the top dog and that it’s exercise, discipline and then affection – that’s the right order. The Boxer rescue folks are not too fond of Caesar and they suggest only positive reinforcement and never say Bailey’s name when angry. That sounds great until I see him chewing on my leather boots and can not help but yell, “Bailey, No!!”. So much for never yelling his name.
Then there’s is the little issue of Sooke. The top dog in the house. She’s nine an not so fond of the idea of sharing her world with the likes of Bailey. She is trying. She snaps at him and makes it clear she will decide when and if she is going to play. They are best when outside with extra room. However, temperatures in the single digits are making the time outside short.
So life with Bailey is exciting, exhausting and wonderful. I have to believe that if we do a ‘good enough’ job of picking the right food, training and allowing the dogs to become pack – all will be okay. In the mean time the blogs will be shorter and likely focused on my canine world. I hope the adjustment won’t take too long.