Housetraining Progress

Friday, March 01, 2013 , , , , , 0 Comments

I think we are making major progress on the housetraining front. Last night Buddy Jr. passed out in his crate and would not get out of there to come into the bedroom with us. After lying in bed for about an hour or two, I finally fell asleep. It took this long to drown out the sound of the squirrel in the attic gnawing on his nightly meal of walnuts, right above our bed. (We're working on this. We had somebody come out with humane live traps, but we haven't had any luck yet. This could be because the dog keeps trying to sniff the peanut butter sandwich used as bait and tripping the trap.)

At any rate, after much annoyance, I finally fell asleep when suddenly Buddy Jr. comes running in our bedroom, sticking his long nose under our blankets and sniffing around, followed by barking and crying. Do you know that feeling when someone startles you in your sleep and you can feel the adrenaline and the blood pumping all through your body? That's how it felt. Barking is really out of character for Buddy Jr. and he doesn't do much crying either, though he did cry once before when he had to go outside to pee. So, on top of being in a startled, adrenaline-filled daze, I was now freaking out that the dog wouldn't be able to hold it if I didn't hurry my butt out of bed and into the arctic February air. I jumped up out of bed, put my socks on and ran to the door to take the dog out. These dogs can only be let out in a fenced yard or taken out on a leash, and since we do not have a fence, I had to be Buddy's night time potty companion.

Greyhounds have a strong instinct to wander and chase, which is only further reinforced by their racetrack training. If we let him out on a long rope like we have done with other dogs, he could see something, run after it and brake a leg or snap his neck when he got to the end of the rope. (They can reach 45 mph in 3-4 strides) An electric fence doesn't work for much the same reason. He could run and be through the electric fence before even feeling the shock and be scared just enough to not want to come back to the house.

From my little nighttime disruption story, you may think I'm bitter, but I'm actually very grateful. I'm grateful he's learning that he has to go outside to go potty and that he has to let us know when he needs to go. I'm also grateful we didn't wake up by stepping in a puddle of urine only to find a giant smelly pile of dog poop just beyond it. I can't even imagine how lovely it would be to have those two things marinating and cooking on our heated floors all night long, the aroma wafting through the house.

My original intent was to give a little snippet about Buddy Jr's progress and give a recipe for a green smoothie, but it just doesn't feel right putting these two things in the same post after the last mental picture I painted for you. I put the smoothie recipe in another post.

Here's a shot of Buddy Jr. hiding his face in his toy, refusing to get out of the crate and make the *long* (not really) trek to the bedroom to go to sleep.

Rescued Greyhound Sleeping in Crate with Toy