Paisley went into heat only three days after she arrived in her new home. Thankfully we started interviewing for a potential mate months ago. There were a few options:
All are fantastic dogs but the lucky gentleman for Paisley is:
Duke is a beautiful 60 pound pure white poodle. He has a great family friendly temperament (we put him through the ultimate test at our house and at the Thompson's house!) and he comes from champion, health tested lines. We've been having Duke spend some time at the Hatch house with Paisley and then he has gone over to the Thompson's to give both of them (mostly Paisley...) a break. He will 'visit' once a day for four or five days and then he will head back to his home in Utah.
Paisley and Duke hit it off right away and we are anticipating puppies in the middle of May! They will be ready to go to their new homes around the 4th of July.
The weather here in the valley finally turned from melty winter to breezy spring. We had some of our family here visiting for the weekend so we loaded everybody up (6 adults, 7 kids and 4 dogs!) and we drove over to Cauldrin Linn. Cauldrin is a place on the snake river where the canyon narrows to about 50 feet.
The water roils and boils and churns like nothing I've ever seen. The water levels are still really low--no spring runoff yet--but it is still quite a sight. When the reservoirs are full and the water runs full throttle, Cauldrin Linn is a ground shaking experience to see! This weekend the water levels were so low that most of the rocks were exposed showing the smooth crevices and rounded boulders.
Above and below the narrows the water is calm and peaceful.
We were the only people in the canyon and the dogs had a blast sniffing every nook and cranny and running in a full-throttle skipping-gallop over the fields flattened by the winter snows.
We discovered that Paisley loves to swim!
We were practicing our rock skipping skills on the glassy smooth water up river. When Paisley splashed through the quiet surface we thought she had fallen in but she climbed out, shook enough to get us all wet and jumped in again. Thankfully we live in an area with plenty of dog friendly swimming holes!
Paisley had diarrhea yesterday. I'm guessing it probably had something to do with either the two bananas Jackson fed her or the chicken feed she taste-tested. Either way she hasn't been using the dog door on her own yet and I was busy getting kids off to
school in the morning...Ick.
So as soon as the kids left we set about learning to use the dog door.
The fastest way to teach a new behavior is to capture the behavior being offered without luring, bribing or forcing the behavior. Paisley wouldn't use the dog door on her own so I knew I wouldn't be able to just capture the behavior.
There are a few different ways to encourage a dog to offer a
desired behavior so that it can be captured, reinforced and eventually put on cue.
I decided to take the easy way--I enlisted Beau as my helper.
I gave Beau and Paisley each a few treats then I put them outside. I lifted up the plastic flap and called Beau in through the door. He trotted into the house and happily gobbled the treat I offered. Paisley cautiously crept up to the door--flap still held open. She timidly poked her nose in. I praised her and offered Beau another treat. In this case a little jealousy can be a good thing! Maybe bit of a bribe...
But it worked!
The light-bulb clicked on and Paisley realized that she could get what she wanted by going through the door. She came inside and she got her treat. I reversed the process by going outside and calling the dogs out. This time she hesitantly pushed the plastic flap aside and hopped through the door. She has been using it ever since.
I will no longer be cleaning up dog poop and we can leave the dogs home for hours at a time without worrying.
I believe that dog doors are the world's best invention second only to fire and color television.
We welcomed a new girl to our home this week! Our beautiful English cream Golden Retriever, Paisley flew in to Boise from Phoenix, Arizona on Friday night.
Fonda did all the work researching and interviewing all the prospective English Creams we could find from the East coast to the West and when we found Paisley we knew she would be the perfect mom for our future goldendoodles.
Coming from a ranch in southern Arizona, Paisley is trying to get used to snow, grass, noisy kids, a new furry housemate, different smells, cars, chickens and toddlers who try to feed her fruit snacks.
We think she is handling things pretty well. She has a mild, somewhat reserved nature and she is getting to know the family like a sweetheart with a wagging tail and big brown eyes! . Over the next few days we will let her adjust to our routine and we'll start our favorite training methods.
I am Kimberly and I'm the mom of the Hatch family. Dogs have been a part of our home since our kids were tiny. We have lived through the good and bad that comes along with living with our furry friends.
We spent several years when every single barbie and 'guy' that we owned was missing a limb or two. There were puppy days when I felt like I would go crazy if I had to spend one more second worrying about where the puppy was--because out of sight always meant trouble. We now know the joy of being able to leave our dog home at any time without a worry.
We know what it is like to have a dog that isn't trustworthy around children and we also know what it is like to have a dog that patiently stands next to the toddler who is hanging onto fists of fur while learning to walk.
We know the frustration of having a dog that bolts through the door at every opportunity and the joy of a dog who faithfully trots beside us as the groceries are carried into the house.
We've learned a lot of dog lessons the long and hard way. A combination of training and picking the right breed for us has allowed us to finally enjoy having the perfect family dog! We think every family can be enriched by sharing their space with a great dog.