Training #1

For the next several posts, I’m going to show you Seva in training. I recorded one training session, but I’ve divided it into clips, each one focusing on a different cue or cues.

This training session took place at the end of August, before Seva ate a sock and had to don the cone of shame. She’s 5 months old here.

Get Dressed


Watch and Roll Over

It’s Hard Being a Puppy

When Seva lies under a chair most of day with her chin on the floor, drooling, you know something is wrong.


Poor pup.


Seva has been sleeping a lot this past week. She’d been away from home for the first time over Labor Day weekend. The report from the puppy sitter was that she had a grand old time and there were no problems or concerns, until Sunday morning when she ate a sock.

That’s right. Seva got hold of one of their daughter’s anklets and before they could reach her, it was down her throat. They gave her a tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide and she vomited it up. The whole episode only took a few minutes, and all’s well that ends well, right?

We were not upset with the sitters. We were only surprised it hadn’t happened sooner. Seva has a penchant for socks, especially dirty socks.

This dog will let me riffle my fingers through her food while she eats, but she knows exactly what is forbidden fruit and then the chase is on. She locks her jaw over the snatched object and bolts until nabbed. Do you know what a dog does when it really wants to keep something away from someone else? She swallows it. Makes perfect sense, doesn’t it?

You have no idea how many times a day I put my fingers in that dog’s mouth! My fingers and knuckles have been crunched in her teeth while I’m rummaging around her tonsils more times than I care to think about. Not to mention the saliva. (Oops, did I mention it?) Dog saliva is rather thick and slimy. It really coats. The yuck factor is high on this one.


Squirrel brains.


Recently, Seva managed to remove the ear from this squirrel and then pull out a sizable chunk of brains. The wad of stuffing is larger than it looks. Here, it’s been compacted by her attempt to swallow it. Scott held her head while I worked my fingers down her throat. Deep enough to gag her. I had teeth marks almost to my wrist. Don’t worry, we got the ear, too.

You can see why we weren’t upset with the sitters.

Seva spent the last week out of sorts. We thought being away from home and the sock incident had taken a toll on her. She was rejecting her food and lethargic. Then the diarrhea started. We thought it was probably a stomach bug. Then Sunday evening the excessive drooling started.

Uh oh.

We spent Monday morning at the vet. Xrays, stool, blood–enough said about that! Being new to this dog-mama role, I was introduced to another new term: Dietary Indiscretion. That means Seva will eat anything. A N Y T H I N G.

Sticks, grass, dirt,¬†socks, squirrel brains, walnut husks. She must be able to smell those things. She knows right where the squirrels have left them and pulls them out of bushes, grass, leaves. For as many as I’ve pulled out of her jaws, I’m sure she’s swallowed plenty.

Seva is on three new pills and a prescription food. Already, Tuesday, she is feeling better. Happily the drooling is almost gone. Have you ever found your dog’s muzzle and chest sopping wet from drool? Or stepped in the pools of it on the floor. Yep, definite yuck factor here.

Scott and I were remarking that through all of this (going back to week two), Seva has been mellow, accepting, and downright cheerful. I am beyond tired of diet changes, medications, vulva washes, etc. etc., but I couldn’t ask for a sweeter puppy to be on the receiving end of things. And for that, I am grateful!


Nap time.