The collies are six months old. A few days ago, I saw Clover chewing a piece of fabric. Upon further inspection, I saw that Raven and Clover had started to dismember their favorite octopus. This was a large toy with long legs allowing the pups to play together. One would drag the octopus, while the other puppy would follow and bite at the legs. Raven was pulling out the plastic that is inserted in the toy to make a crinkle noise. The collies’ puppy teeth have been replaced with adult teeth and things have changed. I removed all the “delicate” toys from their toy box.
I used to give them recyclables to play with before tossing them in the trash. The puppies had a lot of fun dragging the plastic around the house and chomping on it. Recently, it became clear, their big teeth totally destroy the recyclables, and this is no longer an option.
I picked up some tough toys at the local training facility and they were a hit. See video below.
I have been taking them to professional training and working with them myself. They are on their way to being well mannered dogs. They are not there yet. I wanted to paint a couple rooms today and knew that worn out tired puppies would work best for me. I thought taking them to the local dog park for an early morning run would wear them out. I let them go to the car without the leashes. I blew it. I immediately realized I did not have the key and went back in the house to get it. When I went back out, the collies were nowhere to be seen. Not a half mile from our house is a major road and I was petrified they would head that way. They are not street smart and would surely get hit by a car. Otherwise, I was pretty sure they would return but I set out to find them. I whistled and blew a dog whistle and no puppies. I was thinking about standing by the busy road to see if they showed up but went back home first. I found them in the neighbor’s yard. Raven saw me and ran enthusiastically to greet me as if to say, “wow, I’ve been on the most amazing adventure, let me tell you about it.” Once I told him how wonderfully excellent he was to come to me, Clover showed up to join in on the praise. Inside, I was upset with them. Since they came to me when they saw me, I had to tell them they were the best puppies on the planet even though it was a lie.
I did get them to the dog park and let them play until they gave out and brought them home. It worked. I was able to paint while all three dogs spent the day sleeping. I painted two rooms downstairs which is usually cool since the house is built next to a hillside. When I was finished and came upstairs, I could hardly breathe. It smelled like the world was burning down and it was hot. I closed up the house and turned on the portable air conditioners and the situation improved. There is a lot of smoke from wildfires.
After coming to this area, I attended several classes at the Kitsap Art Center and one of them was to learn how to oil paint. I became addicted and have been oil painting in all my free time since. I’ve been focusing on furs and feathers and recently embarked upon trying to paint some of the past and present dogs in my life. I do not often get it right, but sometimes I’m pleased with the result. In “Blink” it says you need 10,000 hours to become a genius. I’m working on the 10,000 hours.