22 Weeks- Puppies and Toddlers Bruise

Dec 9, 2004 | Stitch's Story

My husband’s out of town for a couple of days, so I decide it’s time for Stitch to learn to sleep in the bedroom like a real dog (who am I kidding – on the bed). So far she’s been sleeping very nicely in her crate in the dog room off the kitchen, but in her life as a Service Dog, she won’t always have a crate to sleep in. She’s been making such a fuss about being on the bed, even for an hour, I’m not anticipating an excellent night.

But it IS an excellent night. Who is this puppy? I put her on the bed, she lies down and snuggles up. After half an hour, she decides she’s too hot and moves to my knees. Half an hour after that, she’s tummy-up and snoring softly. At 3 AM, I wake up with her tail whipping me in the face – she’s wagging it in her sleep, but I won’t hold that against her. When I’m ready to get up, she’s still sleeping. What a good puppy!

There was definitely a breakthrough in the puppy brain yesterday. All day Stitch is cuddly and charming and more responsive than she’s ever been. Another mark on the wall for Leading The Dance, even in its mildest form.

On a bit of a worrisome note, she’s broken off one of her two remaining puppy canines just below the surface of her gum. I hope the new canine pushes it out, but in case it doesn’t, we’re not going to bother with her dewclaw until I find out whether she’ll need an anaesthetic to get rid of this tooth. Might as well do both jobs at once. My pet surgeon doesn’t want to do the dewclaw when she’s still on meds for the eye infection anyway. Gosh, this is like a kid with a teething fever, a big bruise on his back, and four stitches in his chin. AKA “normal”.

We start supper with some position reminders – Sit from standing and down, Stand from sit and down, Down from sit and standing. Then we do more retrieving. By golly, she may not have it tomorrow, but tonight she understands retrieving. She goes eagerly out to the dumbbell no matter where I toss it (within 4′ of me, anyway), picks it up, comes back to me, and holds it while I hold it until I click. She’ll even come a little closer if I ask, or sit if I ask, still holding the dumbbell. Totally exciting. And cool watching her pick it up in her lips, then toss it back into the correct position in her mouth without having to open her mouth to get it past her canines.

When we’re done I feel guilty about doing retrieving with her broken tooth. While I’m tidying up, she goes in the pantry and drags a garbage bag full of used tin cans out into the kitchen. Guilt problem solved.