Rebel has been home a few weeks now and is doing amazing. We made the 10 hour round trip to get him without issue and have been living the puppy life ever since.
I knew that Golden Retrievers were smart, but I have never had a dog THIS smart. WOW Here are just some of the adventures we have had thus far.
Housebreaking: Within 2 days he understood where potty goes and he has had very few accidents from there to date. Even with a bad tummy issue early on, most of that went in the grass. YAY. He communicates his needs with whines and barks. Whine means I need to go potty. Bark means I need to go potty NOW. If you ignore the bark, prepare for clean up. LOL Rebel is training us much more than us training him. He remains at 99% success rate on potty training..... the parentals are still learning communication skills. LOL Whine and Bark sounds very similar to whine and bark for water, "I want to play" and other "I want" demands. We are VERY happy with his 99% success rate right out of the gate tho. You just couldn't ask for more.
Crate Training: None needed as he went right in without issues. We were the last family for pickup so Rebel was already used to sleeping alone in a crate. YAY
Sleepless Nights: The first week or so Rebel needed to get up 4 times a night to potty and gradually slept thru the night.... although his night ends at 4 AM to date. Thankfully hubby and I are like a well oiled machine with team work so everyone gets plenty of sleep. Shift-Work rocks.
Obedience Training: Rebel learns FAST and we have accomplished a lot for such a young pup. Here are a few of his current accomplishments.
- Sit: Was very easy to train. Get the treat bag out and he sits immediately as he knows school is in session.
- Leave It: This one is amazing as he is very food motivated in training. He will sit or lay in wait looking at kibble or carrot until he gets the "OK" release to eat. The kibble or carrot can be in hands, fingers or on the floor. Even unsupervised with the food he rarely breaks the command. We don't know how long he would go before breaking the command supervised, but we have done this for several minutes at a time without fail. Rebel is a very very patient little boy!
In progress work: Rebel has a ferocious Tug game. We have not introduced "Out" to this game yet, just getting him fired up to tire him out. He does great at "Fetch" and has about 50% success rate on "Out" and return to sender. LOL
We have been on quite a few adventures for environmental socialization. He has had very few fears, one was the tractors but that only lasted about 24 hours, now he loves them. The Vet does not want us to take Rebel around other dogs until he has had all of his vaccinations which will be 14 weeks. We can't wait for Spring so we can get outside more and explore as well as playing with his soon to be best friend, Buddy, who lives down the road.
My motto: A Tired Puppy Is A Good Puppy
See also: Puppy Life Hacks