So tonight is Scout’s last day of puppy class. I have to say, I am both excited and dreading it. To start with, Scout hasn’t learned much that we didn’t teach her on our own. We can chalk that up to us being overly energetic when Scout was younger (we were following what our how-to-raise-a-puppy books said, which was to start training immediately, so we did as we were told), but it also rendered a big portion of the class inapplicable. The flip-side of this is that the real reason we went to the class, for socialization and help teaching Scout to walk, hasn’t paid off much, either.
On the socialization topic, I think it was a matter of more carefully researching what the class would be like. I didn’t realize that not all classes would offer “play time,” so it was a bit of a surprise during our first class when the dogs didn’t get to play at all. In the future, I would have made sure of each class’ details a bit more thoroughly before enrolling in one.
As for walking, well, you all know how that’s going. I find it immensely frustrating because one day Scout will do very well, and then the rest of the week she’ll be a terror. The good days give me false hope, while the bad ones make me feel like I’m losing a lopsided game of tug-of-war. The daily seesaw is exhausting. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, tonight we’ll introduce the training collar, which will hopefully help us make headway in this regard.
Other than walking on the leash, Scout is a pretty well-behaved dog most of the time. I say most of the time because she’s had two “accidents” in the house this week, and I say accidents in quotes because, well, they weren’t really accidents. The first happened Monday night. B was getting his coat on in the bedroom so that he could take Scout out to use the bathroom, and Scout crouched right next to the baby gate at the bedroom door, looked straight at him, and peed. You can imagine my reaction. The second instance was last night. I was standing at the bar reading mail, and I knew that Scout was sitting next to me, but I was concentrating on the mail. The next thing I knew, I glanced down at her, and she walked away, revealing that she wasn’t just sitting next to me kindly, but was peeing. Again.
Each of these instances were not full-fledged “I can’t hold it any longer” moments. They were just a little puddle, enough to infuriate me and prove Scout’s point. Whatever that might be. I just keep reminding myself what I’ve read before: She’s just asserting herself to see how much she can get away with. Grr.
Today, when she absolutely refused to walk well at lunch–another asserting herself kind of moment–I marched her back inside and put her in her crate without giving her the customary peanut butter-filled Kong. She looked at me like I’d gone off the deep end. The thing is, I’m determined we’re going to survive this stage with our authority in tact. Scout is determined to prove she’s the queen of the house. Who will win? Only time will tell, but please, please be me and B–
–Time for an impromptu Zoey’s Corner:
Ha ha! Ha ha ha ha! Oh, mother. You and Dad and the little mongrel are all wrong. It is I, Zoey the Cat, that is already the Queen of the House. Your efforts to thwart me are futile! You are not battling the dog for rule of the house, you are only battling for rule amongst you three. I already rule the house! I knew with enough patience I would overcome this dog obstacle, and you, dear readers, have finally seen it. Ah, being right feels so very good.