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Hi everyone,


I've been lurking on the boards for a few weeks, now. You all have beautiful babies! And, you all have excellent advice - I'm a big fan of diverse viewpoints - and there's plenty of that here.


First, a bit of background. I'm an internet content director for a local news station and work a lot------------ :D waiting for onslaught, heh. But, in my defense, I had the job before the sweetest puppy in the world adopted me. I live in Oklahoma, so BC stock dogs are quite common (as I'm sure the puppies are as well). She wandered up to my house one day and my housemate, after beginning to leave for work, came back in the house and told me there was a dog outside. Now, she's not afraid of dogs, but I think she was pondering what to do. So, I came out and had a look at her. She had a flea collar on (way too tight btw) and was super well behaved. She sat on the porch, and when invited in, wouldn't come inside.


I asked my housemate (who has a dog of her own-not to mention me and my cat) if I could keep her. She said yes. So, I waited about a week and a half. Called the pound and gave them my number in case anyone had been looking for a lost BC pup and I also looked for signs around the neighborhood. Nothing. So, week two, I called her mine...named her Sophie...and got her shots. Turns out, a neighborhood kid owned her first and his mother made him give her away because (as a puppy :D ) they gave her away because she chewed through the AC cord. What happened after that, I can't tell you. But, now, this brilliant pup is mine-all mine! :D


She's working on five months and, aside from normal puppy silliness, is a great dog. She already knew how to sit. Now, after a month, she sits, lays down, stays (mostly), knows her right from her left (in front and side by side--and actually aims to put her paw in my hand), walks (mostly :rolleyes: ) beautifully on a leash, and had her first proud momma walk yesterday---leash free in heel position for almost the entire walk with a stop sit (?? on terms), and crawls.


Now, for the issues :D :

  • She's overly anxious with visitors, I've tried the "tree" tip but it doesn't seem to work with new strangers.
  • She doesn't retrieve, but - perhaps - she "touches" (?). For instance, if I throw a ball she'll run to it, touch it with her nose and run back to me. Also, she'll run loop the loops around me, hilariously without tripping me - she has to be the fastest dog I've ever seen! She'll cut me off at the pass without me breaking stride and run around the rear and back before I can blink.
  • Last, she has this thing with grates....won't walk over them, but if I drop the leash she'll walk around - so I worry about agility, though I think It'll be good for her.

Anyway, I love her to pieces, she has a four week puppy obedience course, the last of which end this month. And, I'll be purchasing a starter agility kit to start the fun part of puppy obedience/agility combined - no jumps, I promise. She's so smart and so full of energy that I don't want to short change her. I want to stimulate her as much as I can physically and intellectually - I don't want to disappoint her. I have fun with her and I want her to have fun with me.


Any advice y'all can give is appreciated!


P.S. She loves to play with dogs that are bigger than her. She played with an eight month old Great Dane today (the GD, isn't around other dogs a lot apparently, and we met at the university where I walk Sophie). She had the best time, ever! and didn't want to leave.


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Sometimes the best dogs are the ones we get when we aren't expecting them.


She's just a baby, so socializing will help tons on this. She needs to be signed up for a basic obedience and socialization class soon. And take her everywhere, stores, parks, playgrounds. Start on the outskirts of each activity, and let her get comfortably slowly. Don't let strangers force themselves on her and tell them just to ignore her at first. Have them sit down if you can, and simply keep Sophie beside you. Be calm and relaxed and give Sophie that to imitate. If she shows interest in the stranger reward her generously with a calm happy voice and a really juicy treat. Encourage her to take treats for the person if she will. And I mean *juicy* treats...cooked chicken, hotdogs, etc.


Retrieving: instead of just throwing the toy try dragging it around and getting her to chase and interact with it. It won't take long for her to get her mouth on it, then you can start short tosses.

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