Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Guarding the kitchen

Mr. Affable, aka Sammy is 5 months old now, and bigger than Robin, although that's not saying much. He was 14 pounds at his vet visit, for his last Parvo shot. I think Robin must be done growing, as she hasn't gained weight or height since before I took her to be spayed. She is definitely a TOY Aussie, but I am sure Sammy will be well within the Mini range.
Sammy just lives to love you, or me, or anybody around, and will attach himself to any visit as a fresh source of petting. He wants to be a lap dog, and is just incorrigible about pushing Robin out of the way. He acts like a typical adolescent, and is lazy about say, going up to the clothesline or the chicken house unless he thinks food or a walk will follow. He doesn't even want to go outside in the heat until he has to potty so bad that a delay could be disastrous. He loves the crate in the house, and will sleep in there voluntarily even when I'm home. He's a very silent dog. He never makes a sound except for a minute or so of howling when one of us takes him out to the ex-pen on the front porch at night and puts him to bed. Until he stops damaging stuff on the porch when he is left out there, he is definitely not going to sleep inside.
On the other hand, Robin takes her responsibilities as the senior dog and self-appointed guard dog very seriously. She will go up the hill with me even in the heat, just going from shade to shade, because after all, she might need to protect me. She's at my heels whenever I move. She barks more than I would strictly like, and I have yet to figure out how you stop it with a positive based training method. After all, if you are supposed to ignore behaviour you don't want, how do you ever get her to shut up? And when Sammy is really bugging her, barking and growling and attacking him is the only thing that works for her. But she is not a lover like Sammy. She does love us, but doesn't really like lap sitting except on rare occasions, and will stay just out of reach under stress. I have to make her stay and then go to her if I need to get my hands on her. Its probably from having to take meds and have her eyes washed so much in her life, as she was much more of a lap sitter as a baby.

I really love them both, even though sometimes I wonder what I did wrong, to have to wade through 2 dogs and a cat to get anywhere in the house.

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