Dasha is finally getting the hang of “sit.” She’s not quite there yet, but is now consistently sitting for her food. I don’t think she’s associated the hand signal yet, but she’s making the connection between sitting and food. It’s been fairly hard to teach her this one because she’s shy about hands around her head, so she’s not being led in position. She’s also not all that interested in food . ..
Last night we saw for the first time some REAL GSP come out of this girl! It’s been raining here in Sacramento, so the dogs missed going to the park on Sunday. Monday night came along and they were READY!
Dasha was LEAPING off the ground when the leash came out, soooo excited! When we arrived at the park, her tail was wagging non-stop at the gate!!! The SECOND I opened the gate – she was OFF! She ran around the park at full speed like a gazelle! This went on for about an hour, NONSTOP – leaping and bounding, all 4 feet off the ground. At various times, other dogs would see her running and try to join in, alas, NONE of them could catch up to her . . . Finally about an hour later she came trotting up with a ball in her mouth . . . When I tossed it for her she bounded after it, POUNCING on it when she arrived! She then proceeded to spend the next 30 minutes tossing it up in the air for herself and kicking it around the park like a soccer ball!
VERY adorable; so joyous! The kind of thing that just makes you smile to watch!
Dasha is starting to get comfortable at the dog park and her adorable playful personality is starting to shine through. I’d like to get a video of her playing, but we’re always there in the dark! She enjoys playing with dogs of all sizes and goes from dog to dog doing the play bow trying to get someone to join her. She’s engaged in lots of chase sessions and no longer feels the need to stay close to us. She also enjoys some NOISY wrestling with a few of the dogs her size. She plays well with both large and small dogs. She gets VERY excited when we take the leash out!
On the home front, she’s getting more confident moving throughout the house alone and is much less fearful of going through doorways. She picks up toys and engages the other dogs in play often and has learned her routine very well.
We’re letting her roam the house free during the day and she has not destroyed anything or had any accidents and she no longer whines when her people leave the room.
We’ve had Dasha now for a week and I must say that I’m embarrassed that I have yet to get some better pictures up of her! I’ve taken a few, but with the holidays, we’ve been a bit busy. I’ll try to get them up tonight though!
Dasha has been with us now for about a week. We are serving only as her temporary foster home until her long term foster home is able to take her. After only a week, we’re already getting sad about her leaving!!
The most important things: HOUSEBROKEN AND CRATE TRAINED!!!! =)
This is a VERY sweet dog! She is extremely timid and submissive, so she’ll need to go to a gentle home who can be patient with her as she gains confidence. She currently lives with a dominant female and a goofy male, both around her age and gets along with them beautifully. She doesn’t want to play too much, but once in a while she will jump up and down in her play bow trying to get another dog to play. Often when they start to play back, she gets intimidated and tucks her tail, running back to her people. She is more wary of dogs she doesn’t know and although she is frequenting the dog park, she stays very close to her people (sometimes climbing up on my lap!), but is starting to venture out further and further each time. Although she does very well with other dogs, it appears she will protect her food from them if they approach. We feed her in a crate, and when other dogs approach her crate while she’s eating, she does growl. I’m not sure if it would go any further than that and I don’t care to find out . . . she should be fed separate from other dogs. She does NOT growl when humans take food from her bowl, this is strictly towards other dogs.
The big time positives:
1. This dog is already housebroken!!! and to some degree I think trained to go potty right away. It’s the first thing she does when she goes out, regardless if she’s been out an hour before, so it’s really nice that you don’t have to stand out there in the cold. Speaking of cold - she HATES the cold. She shivers after only about 15 mins outside and we’ve had to resort to sweaters when we go to the dog park. She will whine if she’s cold. She can go about 6 hours in the house without needing to go out; however, she doesn’t know how to signal you when she needs to go out . . .
2. She’s crate trained, but prefers the bed. She will go into her crate when you say ”crate” and enjoys being in there. With the door left open, she will often lay in there, when we’re just hanging out in the room and will retreat there if the house becomes noisy or chaotic.
3. LOW exercise needs for a GSP. She’s happy with running around at the dog park for 20 minutes or so or chasing birds in the back yard.
4. EXCELLENT recall. I think with a bit of training, she’ll be great off leash. We haven’t really pushed it, but at the dog park, she’ll come back even when in the midst of chasing birds.
5. People pleaser/cuddler: This dog loves her people. She is always snuggling up beside you, climbing on your lap, and sneaking into the bed. She wants to be with her people at all times. She is also VERY responsive to your voice and verbal correction even with a very simple “no.”
6. LOVES to ride in the car. Just open the front door and she’ll head straight there and jump in. She doesn’t like her head out the window though . ..
7. She APPEARS to be good with kids. Children have approached her at the park and she seems to enjoy the attention and isn’t fearful of them. We don’t have any children of our own, so our experience is somewhat limited here . ..
8. Cats are probably OK. We don’t have a cat, but we have a rabbit and she’s afraid of it, so my guess is that a dog savvy cat and a good intro would be fine.
9. NO identified “issues”: We haven’t heard her bark, she can be left out in the house without destroying anything, she doesn’t chew, she doesn’t dig, doesn’t bolt out the door, she gets along with all other dogs and people.
The Cons: Very few actually . ..
1. She’s definitely never had any leash training. She zigzags all over the place and pulls intermittently. She’s not too strong though, so she’s fairly easy to handle . . .
2. She’s never had any obedience training. And she’s having a hard time learning any tricks because she’s a bit shy of people’s hands, so it becomes difficult to lure her into the positions you want. I think with time and good treats, that will improve as she starts to really trust . . .
3. She’s VERY VERY submissive, timid and shy. While this has made integrating her into our pack, very easy, it will mean that she needs someone with a light touch and a gentle voice to help her build confidence. She is frightened of new sounds and new things and will lay down on the ground not moving when we go somewhere new, so she will need someone to help her through the socialization process . . .
I’ll update soon with some pictures!! She’s a BEAUTIFUL dog with an adorable “puppy face!” That shelter pic just isn’t doing her justice!