I thought it was time for a little pupdate.
He’s brought so much joy to our lives so I thought he might do the same for you. Our gorgeous chocolate has reached 19 weeks old now, almost 5 months. That’s 11 whole week’s with our gorgeous labrador retriever. Oh Bob. Since my last update we have settled into life with a puppy so well. He’s blooming gorgeous. He gives the best cuddles and has brought so much love and adventure to our little family. Don’t get me wrong it hasn’t been all cute puppy cuddles, and waggy tails – we have been tested. We have learned so much though.
Bobby is a huge part of everything that we do and I cannot wait to see how he grows. It’s lovely to have an excited fur baby waiting for us as we walk through the door. His fur has changed so much since we picked him up. A few weeks ago his head and ears were super light but now they’re a gorgeous deep chocolate colour that match the rest of his fur. We call him bright eyes. As they are amber they’re quite unique and so beautiful. They were the reason we picked him out of the litter.
Raising a puppy is wonderful, and it’s especially lovely to see George’s relationship with him. Alf was a rescue dog who was 3 years old when George entered the world so it’s very different to what we have experienced before. We have all adapted well – although I don’t believe we realised what a difference it would be to our daily routine and the whole situation around leaving him. I can understand why so many people chose to bring a puppy into their lives at the start of lockdown. Raising a puppy definitely has it’s challenges, there’s so much to factor in, so much to learn but as we reach the 5 month marker – I think we’re through the hardest part.
So here’s Life with a Puppy [Part 2]
What have we learned
First of all, that every puppy is different so despite all the advice friends might pass on, books and blogs you might read things might not work out the same for you. Like babies they’re all different and one rule just doesn’t work for everyone.
As we have never raised a puppy before we booked a couple of sessions with a dog trainer. He was great, he taught us the best type of language to use and how to modify some elements of his behaviour to make raising a puppy more enjoyable. He taught us tips for rewarding behaviour, recall and socialising with other dogs.
He was helping us with crate training but sadly we just couldn’t get past his negative relationship with it so sadly his tips didn’t really help us – that said in part I think that was because at the point we needed help it was too close to us leaving him during the day and therefore couldn’t practice his tips. I would highly recommend a dog trainer, one thing I loved about Matt was that he trained us all which I think made a huge difference.
What we feed Bobby
I’m always asked what we feed Bobby. He is incredibly lean and I hope I can manage his diet so that he stays that way. In short, he has no human treats, no tit bits and all food is very healthy. I’m very conscious that Labradors can often be chunky especially chocolates, so I’ve done my research and learned so much about diet and the importance of natural dog treats.
In an ideal world I would have him on a purely raw diet but sadly it just doesn’t work for us. So we feed Bobby a mixture of raw meat including mince beef and sardines as well as Alpha Sporting Puppy kibble. Our breeder recommended this method and it’s what he experienced for the first 8 weeks. So far, it seems to be working. I also don’t over feed him which it would be easy to do so as I think Labs are renowned for their love of food.
For treats he has frozen carrots and cucumber, yoghurt (on a lick plate), apple and banana. In terms of natural dog treats Bobby really enjoys chickens feet, cow ears and rabbit ears.
What we’ve brought
A donut bed which has been a miracle worker for ensuring Bobby settles and sleeps during the day whilst we’re at work.
A collar and lead from Sotnos which are a lovely colour and quality. Mustard matches his eyes for sure.
Treats for training from Pooch & Mutt. Our favourites are the fresh breath ones. They are health food for dogs, wheat free and junk free.
We were kindly gifted a Tatty Head – this has really helped us with Bobby’s recall. It’s a treat dispenser so also great for carrying with you.
Where we’ve been
We’ve been on a beach holiday in Devon, camping in Wales and cannot wait to explore more of the country with our fur baby. We struggled to travel with Alfie as he wasn’t socialised so we are determined to travel as far and wide as possible with Bob. And we are loving our adventures so far. We adore our morning weekend walks around Trentham Gardens and are looking forward to finding more dog friendly walking spots near to where we live. Thankfully we have some gorgeous fields nearby so walking him is a joy. We’ve even managed our first Saturday evening in a cosy pub together as a family. It felt super to be out together as a family. As we have to leave Bobby during the day for a few hours we’re determine to have him close by as often as possible.
And that’s Life with a Puppy [Part 2] – I cannot wait to see how he takes to snow, Christmas trees and all the decorations. Here’s to the next 19 weeks with our gorgeous pup.