It’s the Little Mate’s half-birthday today. Happy half-birthday Lil’ Fella.
He’s such a stellar little dude. He makes me use phrases like that, like “stellar little dude” and “oh gosh he’s so awesome” because you can’t be crass when you’re talking about Loki and say: “Oh god he’s so fecking awesome”, you have to be sweet, like him, like a little granny.
But he’s not like a Granny! He’s the ultimate dog. He’s a dream. He loves to do things very very fast. As fast as he can. Recalls across the lounge? FULL SPEED AHEAD!
This is quite terrifying because you’re holding food in your hand and you know that his teeth are about to make contact with your fingers at full speed.
He loves to work. He lives to work. He is the kind of dog who if you asked him to come run a marathon on a 40 degree day he’d do it (at full speed). He’s the kind of dog who WILL work till he collapses. Not that I’ve let him do that, but I know he would. He picks things up that I wouldn’t have thought a little puppy would understand. I don’t train agility with him because he already ‘gets’ the puppy stuff so well that why would I keep practising? Independent sends to trees? check. Rear-crossing/threadling trees? check. Curved tunnels? Check. I haven’t bothered starting carpet running yet because I really feel no rush. Things are easy with Loki, so you don’t have to train often. Unlike Lu, who was slow and disinterested and therefore made me want to train all the time to try and make her like it (whoops), Loki just loves it, and gets it. So… we rarely train that ‘agility stuff’.
Things like: “don’t chase the cats” he’s understood since I first said: “Don’t chase the cats, dude” when he chased them one time. Sometimes if he’s feeling a bit frisky he wants to pounce them but there’s no maliciousness like I see in Lu.
He loves to work Lumen. There’s such a difference between Lu & Loki playing wrestly-bite-face at home, and Lu & Loki at the park where he gets all stalky and gives her border collie eye and tries to out-run her.
He loves putting things he’s learnt into practise. It makes me laugh. We’ve been working on “down” lately. I thought that if I can get a really stop drop on him then when he’s working Lumen I can make him drop and he’ll do it and then I can call him. But of course now he’s applied the concept that drop = reward, so he has to drop everywhere. Watching me make food? Drop! Need me to stay somewhere? Forget sit, I can drop! Not sure what I’m meant to be doing? Drop!
And yet, despite this, which is what I anticipated a BC would be like: all crazed eyes and frenzied behaviours, there’s the sweetest, cutest side to this puppy that I never anticipated. He actually seems to enjoy receiving human attention (!!!), and when he hops up on the bed so he’s at a more convenient height for you to pat and fuss over him (so considerate), his little ears go back and he gets all licky and his little tail wags. You just want to scoop him up and gnaw on his little ears, especially the one that flips over just at the tippy-top.
He does anything you want even if he doesn’t enjoy it because he knows he should and also there’s food coming. Lately he’s had to have some gross medicine in a syringe in his mouth, and some other medicine in his eyes. I put a little handful of biscuits on the ground and he knows the game – don’t squirm, get biscuits. Lu knows this game too, but she’s nothing as good as Loki. But then food’s never meant as much for her as it does for him.
And he loves any toy. I think his most favourite toy is a plain rubber ball I used for shaping him to pick it up and bring it and put it in a bowl. He loves that ball so much. The hollee-roller is a close 2nd, and some tug ropes, and any other kind of ball is good, too. Figuring out how to jackpot this guy is going to be really interesting, particularly for RC where he’ll be chasing after a ball EVERY TIME, and life doesn’t get much better than that for a Lokimate.
It has been a very nice 4 months. He is a very easy puppy. His recalls are A++ unless he’s ‘working’ Lumen, so I’ve stopped calling him in that situation for now and think I need to do some work on a long-line then. He usually doesn’t have enough freedom to pee in the house though he’s had a couple of accidents over the last couple of weeks (I guess I’m home more so he’s out and about more), so we’re still getting there with that… He doesn’t chew things he’s not meant to, not really, and he’s happy enough to swap socks for other toys. He tries so hard to understand the games we’re playing, he so desperately wants to do his jobs right, but he doesn’t shut down if he doesn’t because I just laugh at him trying and give him a cuddle and we play a bit so he doesn’t feel too bad. He sleeps on the bed and doesn’t get off all night, he rarely barks at things unless he’s very excited about doing a wrap or going through a tunnel when he lets out a little “ROO ROO” noise, or like when I came home the other day and he woke up in his crate, stretched and yawned with a big loud “AWRROWWWW!” little howly noise. It was cute so I copied him. He still screams blue murder if I train Lumen outside without him, or if he’s in the crate and the door is closed and I’m making her run to her food bowl. If the door to the crate is open he doesn’t scream at all but has a hard time understanding that when I tell Lumen to “GO GET IT!” why he’s not also being told to go get it. Which is fair enough, I think. He lets me sleep in which is very lovely and he still sucks on his lion toy to help him settle. He’s sleeping right up against me now with his feet twitching and I feel very full up with love.
Oh… And it’s Nic’s actual birthday today too. Happy actual birthday!!! Xx