When I started this blog I committed myself to one post per week, and for the most part, I’ve been able to deliver, sometimes a bit late, and during the chaos of our move, I may have skipped a week or two or three…

Realizing that life sometimes gets in the way, my new goal is consistency and quality!

What I’ve been busy learning:  How to get work anything done with a puppy in the house.


  • This puppy has a very different agenda than you
  • Sometimes she won’t pee as quickly as you’d like or need her too, try not to get too worked up!  Her pee (and poo) will flow when it’s good and ready.
  • You can guarantee that she will repeat the same obnoxious behaviours numerous times before you see any improvement.  Breathe

You need to try your best to be patient, keep on positively reinforcing the desired behaviours; it may seem like an exercise in futility, but one day it will all “click”, or so I’m told!


  • Ask yourself “do I have everything I need at the ready?”
  • Are there treats in my pocket?  A poop sack?
  • Do I have the clicker? (if you’re using it)
  • Assorted chew toys, a ball or another fetch toy to distract your puppy from undesirable behaviours?

Being prepared will ensure that you are able to positively reinforce your puppy’s desirable behaviours by offering him or her whatever you have in your pocket of tricks!  Come on, you’ve got this, remember the stuff that had to travel with the boys when they were babies?  This pales in comparison!  


  • Do not lose your shit with this beautiful little creature!  You will only make his or her behaviours worse!
  • Find a way for you to get into a “calm zone” (meditation, sensory deprivation tank, chardonnay, marijuana…you know what you need, you pick your method!)
  • Remember that there are different levels of calmness; there’s body language, tone of voice, body temperature etc.

Keeping calm will benefit both you and your puppy. You will earn her trust because she will know what to expect  from the calm you!  If you revert to the erratic, teary irrational mess, she will own your ass!


  • Good puppy behaviour doesn’t happen after one request, or two requests, or even three requests!  
  • Keep reinforcing the desired behaviour, and after many consistent attempts, your pet will make his or her connections.
  • Remember to exercise your puppy, an exercised puppy is an obedient puppy.
  • Learn to recognize her cues, if she’s cuckoo there’s a good chance she’s tired…see I’m learning.
  • If all of this isn’t working, there’s always obedience classes! Check your local listings, and ask around for someone who can guide you through the puppy drama and get you to the other side.  
  • Other dog owners are usually happy to share their knowledge and wisdom, perhaps they’ll be able to give you a winning trick or two.

Keep up the good work.  Even when you feel like you are taking two steps forward and three steps backward you are making progress, being diligent is key for you and your puppy’s success.


  • Be kind/loving…if you are kind and loving, your puppy will be kind and loving
  • Lots of belly scratches and “puppy talk” are in order, put your dignity in your back pocket because you are about to sound like an exuberant grandmother here!

It’s always best to operate with a loving heart, it may seem impossible at times, but it will get you the outcome you desire.


  • Do not give in to the cuteness that your puppy radiates, trust me you will regret it!  This will take strength, unless of course, you have a stone in your chest where your heart belongs.
  • Giving up is not an option, here is where strength will get you through to the other side.

There are too many dogs waiting to be rescued, strength will prevent another dog from waiting for a family to love him or her.

I promise you that the past two weeks has been spent searching my soul for an excuse for my procrastination.

Now, I am not usually a woman who offers up excuses for my shortcomings, so you must understand that I’ve been pretty hard on myself.  Every day since our new family member arrived I have said, “I’ve got to get this blog post done”, “OMG I’m so late with this post”, “I just need 5 minutes!” all while running from puddle of pee to pile of poop. Staying inside, going outside.  Running up and running down the stairs, and back and forth to the Pet Store!

It was then that I realized that I was under the power of a particular puppy!  

Mildred Gertrude Cleland

milliecutout She’s my excuse and I’m sticking with her!

signature Karen


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