Of Piddles, Puppies, and Poo

In ten days, the Commander and I will be picking up this little guy and he’ll be joining our family.  I can’t wait.   However, I’m not going into this with oblivious optimism either.  I KNOW what is ahead.  We’re making a big-time commitment to our puppy to train him and help him be a responsible member of canine society, not to mention a beloved member of our family.

After fifteen years, I’m going to be potty-training a puppy once more.  It’s like childbirth.  You kind of selectively forget those days.  The big difference this time is that I’m going to be home and not working.  I hope that makes it easier on all of us.  I’ve also been reading lots of books on potty-training a dog.  Hey, I’m a reader.  What can I say?  I’ve already picked out some good ideas and noticed some things that we did wrong with our Fresca the Wonder Dog.  She ended up potty trained quite well (even rang bells to go outside SO successfully that I eventually had to take the darn bells and hide them) but I see where I could have made it easier on both of us.

We’re also having the dog yard portion of our yard re-landscaped.  It has always been a disaster.  We could never get grass to grow there with any degree of success because it is in a totally shaded area.  Even after Fresca passed away, grass still wouldn’t grow.  When it rained, it would turn into a muddy mess.  Fresca shed dirt with no problem but she would track mud into the house so I was always having to wipe her paws whenever she’d go in and out to do her business.  This little Westie will probably have the tendency to be a digger.  It’s a characteristic of the breed.  I’m not going to give him a muddy playground.  That’s a recipe for disaster.

Consequently, we are having ALL of the grass removed.  The landscapers have arrived today and are in the process of transforming the dog yard into a vision I’ve had all along……more of a zen garden type of place.  There will be sections of mulch and crushed rock paths with a spot in the center for a bird bath.  The dog will be able to go potty on the rock paths or on the mulch.  I don’t really care.  We can replenish the mulch each year and hose off the rock and keep things cleaned easier than sloughing through muddy patches looking for poo.  That’s the theory, anyway.  Only time will tell if I’m correct.

I’ll keep you posted on how the dog yard turns out.  Until then, I’m off to read about “dog socialization.”  Happy Yapping!

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