No lie, I'm a little worn out. This post is going to be a little of this and a little of that. Partially because we haven't been doing a ton of concrete things right now since this is still Dominic's first week home (it's only been a week???). And also partially because my brain isn't functioning at its sharpest at the moment.
Dominic is growing like a weed! As he's getting bigger and more sure of himself, I'm giving him and Miley small chunks of time out together. Miley has learned that she has to take it down a notch with the puppy or else play time is over. They're both learning and happy to be out together. Dominic gets tired out because it takes so much more effort for him to play with her and she's basically a big jungle gym that plays back. Miley is happy because she's not excluded and she gets to play with the puppy, which is the ultimate motivator for her. Unfortunately for her, she does not get to play with him endlessly. Which means that there are chunks of time each day where I am in with Dominic and she has to stay on the other side of the x-pen.
She is not a fan of this and it leads to much whining. Thankfully, the amount of whining has decreased over the past week, but it does leave me feeling strung out between the two dogs. A balancing act that I am still adjusting to.
Also thankfully, Dominic's bladder control is increasing!! Thank goodness!! He can now pretty reliably hold it for 20 min. or longer while outside of his crate. This means that I'm not having to watch him like a hawk for the slightest indication that he needs to go out, which is a bit of a relief. I am, however, having to watch him to keep him out of trouble. He has figured out how to open the kitchen drawers and cabinets. He stumbled on this by accident because everything that can possibly go in his mouth now does. It started with chewing on the nobs on the drawers. Then he pulled on them and voila! The drawer opens! Super. Now he's graduated to using his paws instead of his mouth on the handles to open them. Sometimes I wonder how much easier it would be to live with dogs who aren't terribly bright. ;)
And because I haven't slowed down my schedule at all, this means that Dominic gets to go along on all sorts of fun outings and join in on some of the classes that Miley and I are taking. He got to go and watch Miley's agility class from his crate on Friday. He was surprisingly well behaved in there and didn't whine too much. Tomorrow he'll go along to Miley's obedience lesson, where he'll actually start participating. His portion of the lesson will be short and will consist of the beginnings of foundation work as well as some conformation work. We'll also be heading down to Silverton to visit my family after our lesson so that my parents get to meet Dominic. And today is the start of a 16 week online tricks class that our agility instructor is teaching. I'm pretty excited about that. I was a little apprehensive initially because I do have a tendency to over commit and end up overwhelming myself. And adding additional things to my plate when I'm still in the process of figuring out how to juggle/work in a new puppy, could spell uber stress for me. But I do like this class because it's fun (less serious or competition oriented right now equals less strain for me), it's spread out over a lengthier time frame (less intense training schedule) and it's online (I'm not having to factor in drive time as well as the time it takes to load and unload two dogs and all their gear, which has become an entailed process at the moment).
I've also relaxed my timeline for having Miley obedience ring ready. My initial goal was to have her ready to enter Beginner Novice for the Great Dane Club of Northern California specialty in Lodi in April. If she had continued to be an only dog, this is a timeline that I think we could have been pretty successful at meeting given how we've been doing and how she's been working out in random public locations. However, that kind of timeline right now with a new puppy, makes my brain want to implode. So, I decided to stop stressing myself out about it and I'll reassess where we're at after the specialty. There's a match the night before the trial there, so I can use that as a barometer of how we're doing overall and see how much more work we need to do. Not that we won't attend matches in the mean time, I'm just setting that as my reassessment point. Plus Dominic will be much bigger, they'll be able to be loose in the house together a lot more and I'll have a much better handle on a training schedule for both dogs that doesn't put me in the loony bin.
In other non-competition/training related news, Miley got to see her first REAL snow yesterday!! I was going on a group snowshoeing outing to Mt. Hood with a bunch of friends and I brought Miley along as well. She was very unimpressed by the one inch that we got at our house a couple weeks back, so I wasn't sure if she would have the same blase attitude about the snow on the mountain. My hope was that she would absolutely love it like Heffner and Bess did. Thankfully she did. :) I didn't take a ton of pictures, but I did manage a few. Her absolute favorite was to leap through the deeper drifts. She even attempted climbing the big hill at the end to the ridge line with me, but the soft and deep snow meant that she was post holing the whole way. A factor that made for a high amount of frustrating effort for not a lot of gain. She wasn't enjoying that part, so I had one of our group keep her on leash with them while I got to a point that she wouldn't try to climb after me. Meanwhile at home, a co-worker was hanging out at the house watching Dominic. Thankfully she loves puppies and was happy to wear him out and keep him entertained while Miley and I went out to play. At the end of the day, I had a fun time out with friends and two tired dogs. It was a really great day!