Wednesday, September 25, 2013

On Raising the New Puppy

Pipsqueak, the puppy also known as Z, is the great-niece/cousin X-removed of my beloved Pupgirl. That's where the similarity ends. Oh, they look similar. And they're both troublemakers. I haven't white-washed Pupgirl's puphood on my memory. She earned her nicknames of Stinkerbelle and Pestica.

I have done some things better this time around. I am crate-training her, to keep her out of trouble while I'm at work. So Pipsqueak has not replicated Pupgirl's list of chewed-into-oblivion household goods. Ah yes, I remember the two television remote controls, the cell phone, the numerous shoes, Pat's out-of-print monograph from the Royal Ontario Museum (I confess I let him die without knowing she'd chewed up that book I borrowed), the futon (pad and frame), the industrial carpet... Pipsqueak has directed her energies into digging up my rosebushes. She's on rosebush number 3 right now.  First the Harrison's yellow, then my Perfumed Delight, and now the unknown white climbing rose that came with the house. Although she's happy to grab a runner of the Tombstone rose and make off with that instead of a real cane if she has to.

And what energy! I swear, her energy level is Pupgirl's times 2 or 3. Steroidal. Exponential. She can leap over DoodleBug from a standing position. I've seen her fly through the air. At 30 miles an hour. She's as fearless as Pupgirl was, but faster.

She is growing up. She went into her first heat last night, and nearly ripped DoodleBug's ear off, because he was innocently standing behind me while I tried to wipe her tuchus. Today she got a clean bill of health. The severe medical crisis of this summer, when her liver shut down and her kidneys started to be compromised and she almost died, has completely cleared up, and she's gained the 5 lbs she lost as a 7-month-old puppy back and added another 4, for a total of 46.8 lbs, with adult fur coming in on her back. Pupgirl was at 42 lbs at 10 months, but I think Pipsqueak is a might taller than her aunty.

Maybe Pupgirl's terrible teen months were easier because she was an only dog. Mr. Big didn't arrive until she was 10 months old. He came specifically because she was bothering my beloved cats so much, trying to get them to play with her. But her first heat came and went and she was neutered before Biggie arrived, so I didn't have to run interference between her hormone-induced crazniess and a poor unsuspecting eunuch boy. Pupgirl and Mr. Big did play insanely, and wrestled all over my house. I have the photographs to prove it. And DoodleBug and Pipsqueak wrestle insanely, too, all over the house and outside.

I have been very lucky to have had dogs that actively like each other and get along so smoothly, I know that. I know people that have to keep one dog gated apart from the others, because it doesn't get along with them. And rather than re-home it, they take turns with who gets to be inthe living room at any given time. I am so glad I don't have that problem.

I guess that's worth a rosebush or two.

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