July 17th, 2008

Princess

Zodi at 12 weeks

The obligatory stacked photos of Zodium at 12 weeks. Isn't she huge?!



I've been focusing on getting her to as many new places as possible since I feel she's inclined to be suspicious of new places and people. She's been to places like PetsMart, to the vet three times (once just to pick up some more antibiotics, two other pet supply stores where everyone was very nice to her and gave her cookies, to Home Depot, an outdoor shopping center at night and a friend's house who has a 13 month old. Zodi and the baby got along great and played hide and seek throughout the house. And of course she's been back to the breeders house several times.
Our next planned outings are downtown Hillsborough during the evening, to the farmer's market and to the Eno river for swimming lessons (well, wading lessons anyway).

She doesn't seem scared of things, for example, she didn't bat an eyelash at the shopping carts at the shopping center or home depot. Nor does she seem nervous about cars driving by but she's a little hesitant about approaching strangers which is supposed to be a breed characteristic but doesn't mean I can't try to try to make her a bit less suspicious of strangers.

Most of the people who want to stop and pat her are aware she is a Doberman and usually like and admire the breed but there are plenty of people who look askance and walk by quickly. Those are the people that Dobes seem to have radar for and can easily single out in a crowd to bark and growl at. So, in an attempt to make her less scary looking I'm going to get her a pink bandana, collar and leash. Poor thing, if she had control of her ears she could put them back and down to show she's not aggressive but she's stuck with them in this upright and scary position. No wonder some dogs are totally freaked out by her.

I'm also trying to reward her for things she does in motion because she naturally wants to sit still while I feed her. So she's doing lots of nose touches to my hands, chase games, tugging and chasing the toy. She doesn't offer lots of movement the way Devon did--it was harder for him to sit still--so I haven't been very successful at shaping games. I'm trying to observe her and see what's natural for her and what seems unnatural and then trying to focus on the things that are harder for her or things she's less likely to do.

Her housebreaking is back on track now that her UTI is under control again. I won't know if it's cured until she's symptom free after the antibiotics stop but for now she's actually asking to go out either by whining, jumping up on me or jumping up on the door. I still get up between 6:00 and 6:30 to let her out but now she goes back to bed for an hour or so which allows me some time to drink my coffee and wake up a bit.

And a big milestone was reached yeterday when she let me do her nails without struggling with every ounce of her strength. And I can take her ears down without help, too.

Well, that's Zodi at 12 weeks. I can hardly believe I've had her 5 weeks, it seems like much longer.