Puppy’s First Year – Month 4
Current weight – 4.1kg
First tooth lost – April 23, 2018
Where does the time go, my wee little puppy is already 4 months old!
Edna, our pug puppy joined our family 7 weeks ago, sometimes it feels like it was only yesterday, other days it feels like she’s been here forever – take that as you may 😉
So what have those 7 weeks looked like and what has Edna learned in her first 4 months of puppy life?
Vet Checkup’s, Booster Shots, Nutrition and Growth
At 4 months of age puppy Edna has already been to visit her vet twice. Edna has received 2 sets of puppy boosters, had a fecal test, her ears looked into, eyes inspected, teeth and mouth examined, and because she’s a pug, her face folds are checked to make sure they are clean.
Edna has been weighed at each vet visit to ensure she is growing and gaining at a healthy rate and my vet and I have discussed nutrition and the proper amount of food to feed. I learned on my last vet visit that if you double your puppy’s weight at 4 months of age that should be your pup’s adult weight, so in Edna’s case, weighing in at 4.1 kg’s she should be approximately 8kg’s as an adult pug.
Granted at 4 months of age Edna is still a puppy, this is considered the most crucial time of a puppy’s life to socialize and expose them to as much as possible!
So what has Edna been exposed to, where has she been, and who has she seen in the past 7 weeks?
I enjoy travelling with my dogs and the majority of time I am the only “human” in the car, so it’s extremely important for me and my safety, to have a puppy/dog that is calm and comfortable in a car.
The first few car rides with puppy Edna were not done alone because I had no idea how she would react. There was only one incident on her first car ride where she was a little sick, but I was able to do a quick cleanup – thank goodness I keep spare towels and bags in the car! Each car ride afterwards Edna has done wonderfully, staying calm, no jumping around, to be honest, she ends up falling asleep pretty much after leaving the driveway, she is a pleasure to drive with!
*Note* All my dogs are secured in dog car/booster seats for their safety and my safety.
Visiting and Socialization
Since Edna had not completed all her boosters I was selective as to where I took her and exposed her to. My pug Edie and I visit my mother-in-law at her senior residence, and what a better way to introduce Edna to people using wheelchairs, canes, pushing walkers and going in elevators. Edna is not what you would call a wall flower 😉 she is an extremely “happy and outgoing” puppy – she is a little on the extreme side right now and needs to learn to how contain that excitement, but overall, Edna did very well. She was happy to be visiting her “Nana” in an apartment she had never visited before and Edna showed no fear or concern when seeing her Nana use a cane. When riding on the elevator Edna was more interested in interacting with the humans than being concerned about the elevator ride or the walkers and wheelchairs people were using. I will however, have to work on Edna’s eagerness when meeting people 🙂
Edna has been taking puppy classes for three weeks now and this coming week is Puppy Class Graduation! Although we haven’t been told yet if she will be graduating or not 😉
Since Edna first came home I’ve been working on the basics of sit, down, wait, stay, as documented here in my previous post “Basic Training” . I’m a firm believer of the importance of attending puppy classes to help improve my puppy’s socialization skills, teach my pup how to meet and greet other dogs and humans, and it’s a chance for my puppy to work on taking commands in a strange environment.
What have Puppy Classes Taught Edna?
Let’s just say Edna is an extremely active, happy, excitable, outgoing social, puppy 🙂 She hasn’t met a person or dog she doesn’t like or want to be with, and to date, she has shown no fear. Having a social, fearless puppy/dog has it’s benefits, however, Edna still has to learn how to control and contain that excitement because not all humans or dogs want or tolerate a puppy up in their face. I have learned though that because Edna is fearless and outgoing, she didn’t mind going through the agility tunnel or over a wooden plank – to be honest, Edna ran back and forth over the plank so fast I don’t think she realized it was under her paws! During our most recent class, a wheelchair, industrial fan and large broom were brought out for the puppy’s to observe. One of the instructors wheeled around in the wheelchair while the other hobbled on a pair of crutches while wearing a very large, elaborately decorated hat to test our puppy’s reactions. Edna displayed no fear and was comfortable going up to and around each of these objects without giving a second look. When the instructor passed by with the wheelchair, Edna if allowed, would have jumped up, sat in her lap while licking her face – ok, so maybe therapy dog is not in her near future 😉
What have Puppy Classes Taught Me?
This was not my first time attending puppy training classes, when Edie was a puppy I went to classes with her as well. I’ve had people say, “you don’t need to go to classes, you know what you’re doing and how to do it”. Well it’s been 7 years since I last attended a puppy class and I believe there is always something new to learn about puppy’s and training. These puppy classes have given me an opportunity to brush up on my skills, teach me some new commands, and I have someone with experience I can talk to and ask questions, giving me a different perspective on how to handle some of the challenges I face with Edna.
My puppy’s 4th month is coming to an end so what lays ahead for the both of us? I would like to say I could honestly tell you, but each and every day with a puppy is a new set of achievements and challenges. We will however continue practicing the skills we’ve learned in puppy classes, we look forward to the warm weather and being outside more so we can meet and greet new dogs, and coming up in month 6 we will be at our vet’s once again to be spayed.