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Hi everyone

Hope you're all doing well these days :~) 

Just wanted to jump back on here, now with Nala being just over 14 weeks (~3 months) old and ask a couple questions that I've not found good answers for elsewhere

1) Stairs - big one for us as we live on the 2nd floor of an apartment building (no elevator) and with Nala fully potty trained, we make several trips a day down and up. She has been super keen to take the stairs since very early on on her own, but we have only started gradually introducing her to them a couple weeks ago (we are doing lots of training to reinforce appropriate speed and mood on the stairs because she does get really excited, esp going down). Now she's at the stage where she hates being carried haha! Just wondering - is her taking the stairs on her own most of the time appropriate at her age, or should we persist with carrying her for a little bit longer? Just for reference, it's almost 50 steps, but they aren't very steep or very high.

2) Schedule / evenings - from a lot of the shared schedules/routines of slightly older pups on here (5-7 months) it seems that evenings are a stretch of 2-3hours of being awake and doing things, which for us quite often ends in overtired behaviour. Does anyone recall what their evenings (5/6pm onwards) looked like at circa 3 months? It feels like Nala naturally tires after 45mins-1hr, yet still finds it really difficult to fall asleep or rest. Any suggestions are very welcome! 

Thanks so much! :~) A puppy pic below! 

A & A & Nala

WhatsApp Image 2021-04-11 at 18.34.26.jpeg

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1) Stairs -

If she's light enough to carry, I would carry for as long as possible. I don't know the joint stress, but why risk it, and if she's going at any moderate pace without jumping now, I wouldn't expect that to continue. As for being carried, do keep desensitizing her to that as she'll need to be handled throughout her life. Be slow and gentle and use good treats.

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2) Schedule / evenings

Ours never settled once on her own, would go until exhaustion took her if we didn't enforce a nap. At 4.5 months her off switch completely snapped on and has stuck. Every dog is different, but if yours is getting overtired, its time for a nap, wouldn't worry about afternoon schedules etc, she'll let you know whats working and what's not. For us, dinner and training is still at 6:30, shes pretty zonked by 8ish even now, gets a last bathroom trip when we go to bed and is asleep till morning.

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 It feels like Nala naturally tires after 45mins-1hr, yet still finds it really difficult to fall asleep or rest.

Yep that's seems right. Ours is 7 months old, still goes strong for about an hour, but then its time to end our activities so she can wind down. So long as she has her quiet resting area, you might have to keep guiding her there when its time, so she gets the idea not to overdo it. Lick mats and chews are calming activities if she's refusing rest, but at the end of the day, she'll need to learn to settle and there's a lot of training stuff out there to facilitate that. Afternoons are a common problem time, look up 'witching hour' ;). Take note of your own routines around that time too, something you're consistently doing could also be stimulating her.

She's also teething, it gets worst ime right before the puppy teeth start falling out, when adult teeth start coming in. Can't be fun for them, and certainly not a relaxing feeling.

Super cute, ours has white front legs too, its a very elegant look.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks @Enzsound! We went back to almost 100% carrying her on the stairs and she doesn't seem to mind at all now which is nice :~) Feels good to not be risking the joint stress too. 

Re evenings, thank you, that's really helpful! We don't worry so much about a strict bedtime now and just force naps when she gets very tired and it's been working well. She even started to settle on her own a little bit (we definitely owe this to daily Calmness Protocol too!) which is encouraging, and enjoys an occasional cuddle too. Getting ready for teething and puppy teeth falling out next! 

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