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36 hrs with Dexter

A lot could have gone wrong adding a young adult dog into our family.  Shayne could have flipped her lid, the new dog could have flipped his lid, Rio could have been upset, and all 3 cats could have shunned us.  There could have been a bloody fight any number of ways… but introducing Dexter into the house was largely uneventful.  No snarkiness, no grumpiness, and the only one really upset is Joey the cat–and he simply doesn’t deal well with change in general.

Shayne chewing a stick calmly as Dexter checks her out

The first 36 hours with Dex have gone really well.  All three dogs have come to a pretty good understanding.  Rio and Dex play quite nicely inside and outside.  Shayne and Dex play pretty well outside and inside Shayne’s just a little overwhelmed by him.  Dexter shows friendly interest in the cats but is in no way rude or intrusive, even when they are on the move (though they are dog savvy enough to know not to run).  Only hitch was a boo-boo on my part, Dex was able to start to mark a chair.  I was putting down a fresh bowl of water and, although he was tethered to me, he had a split second of me not watching.  My bad, lesson learned.

Everybody ruunnning!

Right now Dexter’s life is pretty much crate, outside playing, training, or tethered to me.  He actually seems pretty content with this set up.  He’s getting out 6 or so times a day to potty and play, is being hand fed his meals through training, and is starting to explore toys more and more.  I think he’s starting to enjoy using his brain a little bit.  His attention span is that of a puppy, but we are working on it for sure and I have no doubt the more he learns to learn the longer he’ll be able to focus.

Goofy Face!

So far I’ve learned that:

Dexter is a huge goofball–he just wants to play/wrestle/snuggle all the time and he lets you know with this funny grunting noise while throwing himself on the ground.

Dexter is a diligent car chaser–though he loves food more and in just two training sessions he’s learned to whip his head around to me at the sight of a car for cheese.

Dexter is wicked smart–he’s learning to sit, is learning to hand target, and I started shaping a down.

Dexter loves cheese. 🙂

We’ll see what happens as he becomes more comfortable and more confident in his environment.  Should be an interesting adventure!

4 Comments
  1. Dexter is available via Starfish to the sea Animal Rescue: http://www.starfishtothesea.org/animals/detail?AnimalID=3284002

    We are so happy to have Tena on board as a foster home and can’t wait to see how Dexter progresses over time. Good work so far, it sounds like he’s doing great. 🙂

    Crystal

  2. You captured really great photos of Dex! So glad to see the transition is going smoothly. Kudos to you and your entire family for taking him in. He’s very lucky to have such a great foster-mom! And his new family will SO appreciate all the training you’ll work on with him!

  3. I love reading all about your integration and early days. Now that I know so much more about dogs and training, I can’t wait to do more, to start over with a new dog and learn a new dog’s quirks. So I am incredibly jealous but at the same time fascinated by what you are experiencing.

    That and he is just so freaking cute!

    • You don’t have to be jealous, Kristine- there are thousands of dogs out there that need foster homes. 😀

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