Dog Friendly Days Out Round-Up - June 2022

Fozzy's Gottcha Day - How Did It Go?

Fozzy came home yesteday! He is an F1 Cockapoo, now 8 weeks + 3 days old. We first met him when he was one week old so it feels like it has been such a long wait.

Fozzy after his first meal in his crate asking where the rest of his food was ;-) 



The week before we picked him up I felt a real mix of emotions - a lot of excitement but also despite being very prepared, I also started to feel super anxious, to the point where I kept getting palpatations and feeling faint (feels ridiculous typing that!). Thankfully this subsided a couple of days before pick up day and then I just felt normal and ready to go. I think after chatting with other dog owners that this is perfectly normal. 

Fozzy was born in Bishop Auckland which is around a 45 minute drive from our house. We decided on an early (ish) pick up time of 10:30am so left our house at 9:45am. This was nice as it gave us time to get up and have breakfast without too much hanging around/waiting. Dee surprised us by being the first one downstairs and sending a whatsapp to the family group asking who wanted a cuppa. Absolutely unheard of for them to be the first up on a weekend - they are usually the last. Guess they were super excited! 

Fozzy watching Doctor Who 


Our breeders have been second to none throughout this process and when we arrived at their home, Fozzy was in the living room with Rachelle and Steve showed us through. They went through his vaccinnation/heathcare record and gave us a copy, gave us some flea treatment, went through his puppy insurance with us, gave us a copy of his parent's heath/DNA certificate, showed us how to switch his microchip info over and went through a few final tips (lots had already been discussed beforehand).

They gave us a bag with a full bag of Harringtons food which he had been weaned on, a couple of his favourite toys and a blanket with his mam's scent. They also extended their invitation to call them if they ever needed to chat and reiterated that this wasn't the end of our relationship - they were always there for us. 

All of the litters' parents are in a whatsapp group together and it was brill sending each other little updates and settling in photos across the day. They are all super cute and seemed to settle really well. 

I was prepared for the worst for the journey home as didn't know what to expect and the A68 is pretty bumpy/windy and there was a storm brewing. My last experience was bringing our Springer Spaniel puppy home 20 years ago and he was sick on my brother and poo'd on me.

I had a bag full of poo bags / cleaning stuff but it wasn't needed. Fozzy was brill though and just slept the whole way through. No accidents, crying or sickness. What a star! 

We aren't using puppy pads and are training Fozzy to use the garden straight away. If you are going to follow this method, it is recommended you take them into the garden as soon as you are home. We did this and waited a good 20 minutes but nothing happened. He was too busy having fun and chasing leaves. It was pretty cold / rainy though and he started to shiver. This was also his first time outside and I felt like it was a lot for him. 

Fozzy playing with Jack 


I didn't know whether to persist for that first wee or bring him in. In the end, we decided to bring him in so snuggled on the sofa for 10 mins then went out for 10 mins. I was keen not to let him play in the house until that first wee and knew if we snuggled him, he was less likely to wee on us than if he was playing. Anyway, after three lots of 10 minutes snuggling, 10 minutes outside, the first wee finally came in the garden. It was a big one and followed by lots of praise from us. Hooray! 

Puppy training manuals recommend taking your puppy out every 30 minutes in the first week to use the toilet if you're not using pads but to be honest, Fozzy just wasn't interested and seemed to need to go out a lot less than this so we immediatly switched to every 90 minutes - 2 hours. We take him in the back garden and say 'hurry up' when he goes. He has been absolutely brilliant with no accidents in the house and now, on day two, he has a wee pretty much as soon as we take him in the garden. We're chuffed! We set our alarm for 2 hours between wees but on a couple of occasions he has cried and looked at the door and we have taken him in the garden if this happens and he's gone to the loo. He seems to definitely already know not to go in the house (I do expect there will be accidents & slips ups to come in the next few weeks / months though). 

Fozzy's first day at home was a mix of snuggling on the sofa watching Doctor Who and Family Guy, playing in the back garden and playing with the kids in the living room. He loves his Sloth cuddly toy and a string of toy sausages the best so far. We have also been encouraging him to chase us and come to us as per the first stages of recall training which he seems to like doing. So far, he hasn't been too 'bitey' but it might be a little early for this to kick in yet. 
 
We were keen to crate train Fozzy. The idea is they see it as their own private sanctuary / space and it goes back to their primal instincts. To get him used to it we left the door open and put his food and water in there at set times. Fozzy was the largest of the litter and clearly likes his food as polished his first meal off here no bother. He took to his crate like a duck to water and definitely already sees it as his den. He takes his toys in there when he's finished playing with them which is super cute and he goes in and lies down voluntarily when he wants to have a little snooze. 




Again, we aren't using puppy pads and are crate training. If a puppy sees their crate as their den, they are very unlikely to wee/poo in there as they don't want to mess it up. Some 'experts' say in the first week, you should get up at around 2:30am in the middle of the night, take your pup out for a wee in the dark and then pop them back in their crate with minimal fuss as their bladders aren't big enough to last through the night yet. 

We took Fozzy out at 10:45pm and put him in his crate / went upstairs at 11pm. He did bark and cry for around 20 minutes which is to be expected. Some people don't think you should leave your dog when they are distressed like this but others say it's best to ride it out for a few nights and they will soon learn. We did controlled crying with our kids and are definitely in the second school of thought. We put Fozzy to sleep with a heartbeat bear and his mam's blanket. I felt so bad for my neighbours! But after 20 minutes, he did go to sleep and was quiet until I came downstairs. 

When I came downstairs at 2:30am I think he was asleep until I opened the door. He certainly wasn't making a noise. I took him out, he had a wee straight away then I popped him back in his crate. He did cry again for another 20 minutes but it wasn't as loud as the first time. I am hoping after a few days, the crying will stop altogether. I hope I'm not being too naive when I say this.   

Proud mama after Fozzy's first wee 



Steve set his alarm for 6:30am. Fozzy was still asleep but he took him out (he went to the loo straight away) and gave him his breakfast / had some playtime before the rest of the family woke up. 

Overall, with no overnight accidents and not too much crying, I am pleased with how night one went. 

Now if your puppy's cage is dry when you take them out overnight, the experts say you should extend the time by 30 mins each night. However one of the puppy owner's in our whatsapp group said that their puppy lasted all night last night and woke them up at 7:30am. Now they do have another dog who usually wakes through the night and they hear them to take them out but last night they heard nothing and both dogs slept through.

Fozzy seems to have taken to house training exceptionally well so I've decided to see if he will go all night tonight. I'm going to take him out at midnight and Steve is going to get up at 6:30am again. If we hear him bark through night, we will get up and take him outside. Someone else on Twitter mentioned to me this week that their dog slept through from 8 weeks too so I don't think it's impossible or rare.

Maybe I am rushing this stage but my gut says it will work out. I know a few people reading this will thing 'too soon, too soon' but it feels right. Let's see how it goes though, maybe I will be eating my words but I hope not. 

As I type this, Fozzy is snuggled into Harry and Steve on the sofa watching Return of the Jedi. I was expecting to need a few weeks off work but now that Fozzy is here, I actually think I will be able to work around him. He is pretty chilled out and just like Ollie (our Saturday dog), he seems to like a period of play followed by a longer period of sleep / rest / snuggles. I can work around this. 

Fozzy snuggling with his favourite toy and Dee after breakfast


Steve usually works from home in our bedroom but it turns out he has two days in the office this month which happen to fall on tomorrow and Tuesday and he's also working late this week so it will mostly be just me and Foz this week. I feel confident and that it's going to go well and I don't want to jinx it but we were prepared for our lives to be turned upside down and it has felt like a breeze so far and he has fit right in. I do think the real test will be next week though when our 'normal' routines with school and work begin beyond the initial weekend. I know this weekend is like a little honeymoon period and next week is when the real work starts. 

I am planning on taking Fozzy out and about next week and hoping he will meet lots of people. So far he has met the Morrisons delivery man (very friendly), my brother and his super loud 6 year old cousin Evan. Tonight he is going to meet Steve's parents and tomorrow he will meet my mam. I am thinking of taking him to Seaton Delaval Hall with Ollie on Saturday (he will be in a carrier) as it's not far away from us and somewhere I know well. I also feel happier taking him on little days out in his carrier with the knowledge that he can go a few hours without going to the loo rather than the 30 minutes I expected. 

Cross your fingers for us next week! 

Comments

  1. It's great to hear about Fozzy coming home.....looking forward to following his adventures!

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