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Thursday, March 18, 2010


We are becoming good buddies.
Ruffey even shares his bones with me.
Mommy's very glad that I'm not chewing on it!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Final Day of Training

Today was our final day of training at 4Paws.
I think Mommy will be glad to no longer constantly
smell like a dog, but we're going to miss our new
friends, watching the dogs bond with the kids,
and all of the staff at 4Paws.
They are so friendly and knowledgeable!
It was really, really raining this morning.
That made me really glad that I have an in-home
companion dog rather than a tracking dog.
The families had to track in the rain and mud.
They came in soaked!
But for those families, it's worth every raindrop!
So, Mommy, Daddy, and Ruffey worked on more
obedience skills, specifically off-leash.
That means, Ruffey had to obey commands without
wearing his leash for correction.
He does well, as long as he knows there
are lots of treats ready for his good behavior!
Mommy and Daddy will be stocking up on
pupperoni treats!
This is Ruffey and me before dinner on Thursday.
I like to play with his leash and tags.
All the dogs were practicing "heeling" at
the same time. They were using one another
as distractions. They are all doing well!
You can see Ruffey's friends Fizz (left) and
Mammoth...both golden retrievers.
Mommy is giving Ruffey a treat for good obedience.
4Paws dogs are trained with treats and praise...
never with punishment.
Families have to agree to follow
this type of training in order to
receive a dog.
And this kind of training must work well
as some of these dogs are not even one year
old yet...and they can follow commands, do tricks,
and search and rescue!
My brothers decided to relax with a movie
during training.
At noon, they went back to the hotel to swim
with Grandma.

I stayed at 4Paws to finish training,
and spend some more time with the puppies.

And that's the beginning of our story as best friends.

Stay tuned for updates!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Training Day Four

Today was another private day of training from 10AM
to 4PM. The other dogs were out tracking and
learning how to move through malls and
stores. So, Daddy got a lot of training with Ruffey,
and both he and Mommy practiced all day.
Tomorrow is our last day at 4Paws.
We sure will miss our friends when we leave!
Last night, my daddy and brothers arrived.
Boy, Ruffey was not happy.
He was a nervous wreck.
Can you see him backed into the corner
as far as he could scrunch?
This is part of the reason he is a home-companion
dog. He doesn't really like to be around a lot of people
or around busy social situations.
Mommy was a little stressed.
All that work she did over the past few days
and Ruffey didn't want to obey.
He was too nervous.

he did take a treat from Charlie...

and a treat from Amarin (which is HUGE for Amarin because he
was very afraid of dogs. He thought dogs would eat him),

and a treat from Jacob.

Ruffey and Laura are good friends.

Charlie used to scream and cry around dogs.
Now, he's cruising all over 4Paws looking at all the dogs.
He really likes them now.

Kayla, one of the trainers, was teaching Jacob
how to do a "down."

Charlie's turn to learn "down."

Charlie thinks he's very important leading
Ruffey on the leash.

Jacob really wanted to hold a puppy.
So, Kayla brought out one of the smallest puppies they had.
Both Ruffey and I were very tired after working so
hard all day.
Ruffey stayed in an "over" for a while...I think he was
too tired to move.
I gave up and took a nap with Daddy.
Who knew dog training was so exhausting?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Training Day Three

Wednesday night, I decided to show Ruffey
how I like to draw on my little board.
Doesn't he look impressed?

This is how we went to sleep, and this is how we stayed all night.
Ruffey likes to cuddle in the morning.
Still not sure I like sharing the cuddle time with Mommy.
Look how Ruffey has his paw over Mommy's arm.
And he was kissing her hand, too.
All the other dogs in this class are search and rescue dogs.
That means, they're specially trained to track kids
if they run away.
Mommy didn't think I needed that yet.
I'm not too fast for her!
So, while the other dogs tracked their kids outside
for 2.5 hours, Mommy and Ruffey received
private obedience training.
Ruffey is really smart, and Mommy is catching on pretty well.
While Mommy got trained, I went for a bike ride...
and rode a dinosaur...
and a horsey...

and then Mommy made me do some training, too.
This is called "over."
If I'm whining, or just need some comfort,
Ruffey lays his whole body right across me.
I think he's heavy...but the pressure feels good!
I'm thinking this may be a good idea to use
on my brothers when they get crazy!

I tried to push him off,
but Mommy had treats so he stayed put.
I guess treats override my cuteness!
And this is called a "lap."
He lays just his head across my lap
(or Mommy's in this picture).
But he did have his paw on my foot!
Earlier, I was walking by a HUGE bloodhound
in our training group.
I mean HUGE...like 150 pounds HUGE!
I fell down and started whining.
That dog belly scooted over to me
and laid his head right across my lap.
And I'm not even his "new friend"!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Training Day Two

Today was day 2 of training. We did a lot of the same things today...mostly
obedience training. Our dogs know the drill, but the parents don't.
So my mom has to earn Ruffy's respect.
She said something about her brain being
fried or scrambled, or something like that.
I wasn't sure that I liked sharing my morning cuddle with
Mommy. Ruffey kept leaning closer and closer.
He even thought he should be in the bathroom while Mom did my hair.
Maybe she should put a bow in his hair, too.
Just kidding, Daddy!

More cuddle time before breakfast.

Ruffey stood guard.

When we got to 4Paws, I decided to explore
a bit on my own.
First, I visited the new lab puppies,
just born in January, I think.

Then I visited some of the dogs in training.
This lab is Rokr.
I tripped over him once today,
but he didn't seem to mind.

Then I rode the rocking horse for a while.

Lunch break!
The temperature got to 69 degrees today!

This little boy followed me all around the training
room. Charlie does this at home, too!
After all that work, I needed a nap!
Grandma was only happy to oblige.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Photos Day One

Here are photos of our first day with Ruffey,
and you can read the story down below.

Grandma and me by the sign.

Our welcome sign inside the building.

Here comes Ruffey!

Mommy had to take Ruffey's treat bag from me because I tried

to eat the treats...they looked like little chocolates!

I liked hanging on the leash, so 4Paws gave me my very

own tiny leash to hook onto Ruffey's new red and black collar!

Ruffey was still a little shy around me. I know I can be very intimidating!

Good "sit," Ruffey.

See...told ya he loved me!

All this work wears a girl out!

Day One

Mommy's physically tired, mentally exhausted,
and she smells like a dog!
But I love my new puppy, Ruffey, (rhymes with puffy).
My day started at 6:30 A.M.
We were supposed to sleep in until 7:00,
but mom couldn't wait.
So, we got ready, ate breakfast, and were
at 4Paws 45 minutes early.
I can see my daddy now just shaking his head.
My mom likes to be early...
sometimes way early so she doesn't have to stress
about getting there.
But we were early enough to get some photos,
get the best seats in the training room,
meet some dogs,
play with some puppies,
find Ruffey's crate,
and meet the other families as they arrived.
At 10:00, introductions began of staff and the facility.
I could go on and on about this facility...it's amazing.
There are a TON of dogs here, and a lot of workers to care
for them.
They even have "grandmas" that come in just to snuggle
the puppies. Mommy wants that job!
The next part was the best...watching all of the dogs
come out, one by one, to meet their new families.
Mommy had a few tears as some very special kids met their
Some kids were happy, others screamed in fright,
but I was very calm and brave.
I let Ruffey come close,
but I think he was more scared of me.
He kept hopping backward to get away from me at
first. But mommy learned from the trainer how
to "bribe" him with treats, and get him to come
close to me.
By the end of the day, he was lovin' me!
He laid down right next to me and put his paw over my leg.
I pet him, and grabbed his fur, and patted his back.
I smiled at him, too.
The trainer told me that I need to open my hands to
pet Ruffey, and try not to grab his fur.
I'm supposed to be gentle.
I think we'll be good friends.
He obeys very well when Mommy or Grandma tell
him "sit" or "down." Mommy learned how to put him in a "down"
and walk around him without him moving at all.
He never jumps on us, and hasn't barked yet.
He laid right down in the van, and
never moved while Mommy drove back to the hotel.
He didn't eat his dinner tonight.
I think he's a little nervous being around new people
and in a new home.
We have four more days of training.
We are all having a great time!