Friday, September 23, 2005

Puppies! Puppies!

Yes, that's me, puppy-sitter, extraordinaire. This weekend I am keeping 2 puppies (Cinnamon is a year-old husky, Ginger is a 9-month-old lab) at my house. Now, let me explain, I love animals. In case you haven't heard me mention it before, I have 2 cats, a bird, 2 turtles, 3 fish, and a dog (he is currently living with my grandma, due to the size-limitations of my house and yard-restrictions of the neighborhood). I am definitely a cat person, but dogs are okay (usually).
My dog (Guapo) will be 4 in January (we adopted him from the Humane Society when he was 8 weeks old), but he has not lived with us since this past January. He is a med-sized dog, we were told he was a terrier-mix, but he looks JUST like this. This breed of dog is called Kromfohrlander, and I'm convinced that is what he is. Well, he's a very excitable, energetic, and fun dog--you'd think he was still a puppy, the way he acts. But, he is also well behaved. He was housebroken in 1 week, trained to stop barking/crying at 2 weeks, and learned commands (sit, down, wait, get in bed, good boy) by 2 months. He jumps all over the place, but never on people or furniture, he just bounces a lot (like Tigger). I love this dog! I'm trying to convince R to let me bring him back's just hard because Guapo really is an "outside" dog and we're not allowed to keep them outside in this neighborhood (come on, really, it's a Trailer Park!). I had many dogs growing up, my parents even have their 2 dogs: Gordo (15-year-old Bassett Hound) and Pinta (9-year-old austrailian/german shepard).
The whole point of this is to talk about the 2 puppies I'm watching. They are two of the strangest dogs I have ever seen. Cinnamon is not as bad as Ginger (I know, these names are terrible). See, their owner keeps them in a kennel almost all the time. They both stay in a 2ft x 3ft wire kennel (yes, together), and are let out for a few hours a day (to run around the house), and taken out 4 or 5 times a day to "do their business." Neither of them are disciplined: They jump on people, they jerk on the leash, they cry and whine when they're separated, Ginger barks and cries for attention, they don't know basic commands, and I don't think they even know their names! I've only had them since yesterday afternoon and I'm already going crazy! Ginger was barking, barking, crying, howling until 12:00 last night! And, when I was eating breakfast this morning, sitting on the couch, she was barking and crying for attention! I rolled up a newspaper and smacked the kennel (I put them in separate kennels) and told her "NO!" and she just looked at me like "What? What's that?" and kept on crying! I have to take them out separately, too, because Ginger pulls the leash a LOT! That is one of my big doggie no-nos! And if you drop the leash they'll go running off. I tried yelling for them (to come to me, or stop, or something), but they just kept running! I wouldn't spank them, because they're not my dogs. But, I am going to ask T (their owner) if he'd be interested in giving me a few weeks to TRAIN them (no restrictions) and turn them into brand new dogs!
And, I'm curious about something, do y'all use corporal punishment (spanking)? Guapo was spanked a lot as a puppy, but he was also praised a lot! He knows if he's done something wrong (it's the same with the cats). Not only do these dogs not know discipline, they don't understand praise, either. When they go outside and "do their business," I say "Good Girl, what a Good Girl!" But they don't even look at me, or wag their tails, or anything.
Hmm, I don't know. It's just weird. I know how my dog is, and I guess I kind of expect other dogs to be like that, too. But, like I said, even my cats understand discipline and praise--like if one of them is on the kitchen table--I look in her eyes and say "Now, you KNOW you aren't supposed to be up there! You better get down!" And, usually they do. If she decides to be stubborn and "ignore" me, I give her a little smack on the behind and TAKE her off the table.
I think of my pets like they're my kids, and I don't think I'd want someone telling me how to "raise" them. But my babies don't misbehave, tear things up, and annoy everyone! T is a very close friend, though, so I think I'll bring up the subject with him and see how he takes it. I'm not very fond of these dogs, but I hate to see perfectly beautiful animals "go to waste." I can just picture Ginger in a few years--a full grown lab--jumping on people (maybe T will have kids by then?), still chewing things up, and just not very enjoyable company. And, T is so busy catering to Ginger that he doesn't notice that Cinnamon isn't eating (she's very thin) and she's being neglected.
I just feel bad for the dogs. I wish everyone could have wonderful pet companions! But, I do know that some animals and people are just not compatible. Before Guapo, we tried "rehabilitiating" a Dachshund that was almost a year old. He had never been housebroken, trained, or socialized--that was tough! We only had him 1 week--and there was NO progress! By that point, his behaviors were so ingrained that he would have never been a good "inside" dog.
I know I'm not a professional, but I think my record shows that I have some idea of what I'm doing. I just hope I can apply these same skills to my children one day! Like my pets, I want them to be disciplined and polite, and still know how much they're loved!


At 10:17 AM, Blogger Mon 's valuable input...

I sometimes spank my dog. Then I feel bad about it. That's why I don't want kids!! I don't beat her, shes my precious little angel but when she pee's on the carpet in front of me when I just bring her in from going potty....whatcha gonna do!

At 10:30 AM, Blogger Celina 's valuable input...

Guapo used to get spanked a LOT for barking--he was very, very quick at housetraining. Now he only gets spanked for "new" things--like if he starts digging in flower beds, or chewing on furniture--and it only takes one spanking for him to NOT do it anymore! And, I know that if my kids act up and NEED a spanking, yeah, they're gonna get it. I can't stand those kids you see "in public" who RULE their parents! Uh-uh! I don't think so!
P.S. Thank God, the Puppies from Hell are gone!


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