Re: SnoopyDobe, The mountains, and the Family

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SnoopyDobe's picture
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Joined: 2009-07-01

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This weekend was nice,  We have been planning to go to the mountains for awhile now.  The plan was to have my brother come watch over the house and Snoopy for the weekend.  I was initially a little scared to bring him with us because we were going to be stopping in Estes Park, Colorado and there it is just packed with people and really nowhere to even be able to pull him aside to calm him down in case he was to get overwhelmed or anxiety, as everywhere is filled with people.

Well the plans fell through with the dog and house sitter, and by this time we had the reserved room for Estes and too late to just decide not to go.  So what else to do, I suggested that we just bring Snoopy and I will just keep him under control and happy the best that I could.  The wife was not too fond of the idea, but what other choice did we have.  I was excited to get him out there and see how we could do together in that setting of people/animals/other dogs just everywhere you turn.

We had a nice drive out there, stopped a couple of times along the way to look at the pretty views of the Colorado Rockies mountains with rivers running through.  I determined that Snoopy is scared of large pieces of water, he just resists it as much as possible.  I did pull him up to the shores of the water and he would just try to sniff it and walk away.  He will not dare step a foot in it, which I was hoping that he would at least not be afraid of it,  This is something we will be working on. 

We arrived at the destination that we will be staying for the weekend(lodge), and I did take him for a short walk around the property as there was a lake couple playgrounds for the kids and a large open area of grass.  He was getting a little more comfortable with things the more we were around them.  Then the family wanted to go downtown Estes to walk around and check out the shops,as downtown is filled with people and shops and all sorts of human created chaotic events.

I thought I was in for it, trying to bring Snoopy into this environment with him still being as young as he is, and not knowing what to expect with him.  I thought he was going to freak out.  We walked Downtown, and right before the first bridge in Snoopy just froze, and started to shake.  I was thinkin that we might have to turn around and go back to the lodge, but I gave it a minute.  Sat down and tried to make him calm after the first bridge.  Then after about five minutes I stood up and just proceeded to walk right into downtown Estes.

Snoopy was the most impressive little Dobe as he just stood up with me and we walked around all day out there with all of these people walking every which way and events and Dogs, and horses, and everything that I thought would have ruined our time there.  And we just hungout all over the place down there.  Even the wife was so impressed with the way I was handling him, and I just told her that it was not something that I was doing and that it was just like a switch was flipped inside him with made him very confident and calm at the same time.  We spent about 3 to 5 hours just walking around in this setting when my kids started to get hungry. I was thinkin well what are the dog and I going to do, being that they wanted to sit down at a restaurant.  I told them get it to go and we will find a spot to picnic and eat.  i was standing outside with Snoopy when this man comes out of the restaurant and just starts talking to me about how he loves Dobermans and how good looking Snoopy was with his tail and ears being natural.  I soon realized that the man was the Manager of the restaurant when he asked me to please come through to the back patio of the place to eat and that Snoopy was welcome to come eat with us back there.

As we were back there eating the man kept coming back to check on us, and more importantly Snoopy.  He could just not leave the dog alone as he would just come back to pet him. We left there shortly after,and back to the lodge where we stayed.  All in all I am so glad that we brought Snoopy with us because he ended up having such a great time with us there as we were all glad that even though unplanned he turned out to be a well behaved family dog and we all got to spend the weekend sharing new experiences with Snoopy and helping him become more comfortable with the up until then unknown.

Now we are back at home and he is back to trying to misbehave.  

Well, it sounds as if you had a WONDERFUL weekend with Snoopy. The MORE you take him and he experiences different places & things the better of a dog he will become. When he acts fearful of anything it is important not to baby him but to approach whatever it may be in a confident way and a happy "lets go see kind of attitude"

Hope this will be just the beginning of many more stories of his adventures. Enjoy Snoopy!

Q Tip's picture
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Joined: 2009-03-22

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What a lovely story to share... It makes me long for summer.  I wouldnt worry about the water...even after a couple of months Q rarely went into the ocean

...
only recently has he started to get his feet wet :)

BlueDobie's picture
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Joined: 2009-07-02

Isn't it just amazing how they transform when they are away from home? I am able to take Lou to work with me and when we are there it is as if a halo comes over his head, because he truly is an angel there. Most of the time is spent sleeping in his bed, and my co-workers are constantly commenting on how well-behaved he is. I have to keep telling them, "he's not like this at home". At home Lou is constantly wanting to play, but at work he only plays slightly for a few minutes and then its back to sleep. Even if he is not on a leash, I walk around and away from him, but he doesn't seem to care. At home, he is still a bit of a whiner, although it has gotten much better.

The first time I took him to a crowded place and a band playing, I was amazed at how well he took it as well. At first he was a bit skittish, but soon after he relaxed and just played with my friends in the grass near the crowd, he even ran after some people walking by and wanted to play with them.

rgreen4's picture
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Joined: 2008-10-26

SnoopyDobe - congratulations on a fantastic weekend. Your boy is growing up. It is my opinion that he settled down on your walk because he sensed that you were comfortable in the area. When you exude confidence, it will give him confidence.

BlueDobie's picture
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Joined: 2009-07-02

Today I took Lou on a walk around our neighborhood, not very far, but he is still uncomfortable around this area. Any park I take him to he loves it, but here he walks with his tail down (if it were longer it would be between his legs) and pulls on the leash. We encountered many small yappy dogs in yards, and I would stand there for at least 5 minutes with Lou, but he still seems scared of the barking. At first he tries to run away, but I hold the leash firm and don't move, then eventually he will sit down sometimes look at the dogs, but usually his head will be turned away from them. I don't know how else to break him of this, I don't want him to be scared of every dog that barks at him, especially the little ones. The minute we were within 40 feet of our yard his tail was up and he was ready to play.

Does Snoopy have a favorite toy you can bring with and play while you are out?

SnoopyDobe's picture
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Joined: 2009-07-01

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Yes he does have plenty of toys, well he did but he goes through them like crazy.  He was grabbing the kids's stuffed animals all the time to play with so I did start getting him the dog stuffed animals for a while but he chews right through those.  When I first got him a stuffed toy it lasted maybe two weeks before it was shredded.  the other day I bought what looked and felt like a really tough material and I thought it would last him a bit longer.  I gave it to him when I got home from buying it, went outside 10 minutes later and it was shredded,  man his teeth are getting very sharp I think.  So needless to say I probably wont be buying anymore stuffed toys because I dont want hinm to swallow the stuffing.  It might be worth it not to get the stuffed ones anymore, because of future health issues due to the toys.  I would rather prevent it.  This picture was on our road trip in a hotel room, this toy has been the one that has lasted him the longest so far, besides the big red Kong, but he thinks Kong is for playing fetch too.  So it is more like a ball that dispenses peanut butter or treats.

rgreen4's picture
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Joined: 2008-10-26

Princess likes the squeaky toys. I get her ones that are soft but have thickness to them. She likes to take them and give them a workout. I had a friend call one day and she was giving her toy a work out and he asked if I had a bird. I laughed and said no, that's the dog with her squeaky toy. It did kind of sound like a bird.

I have also give up the stuffed toys. I have a yard full of fluff. The rest washes away (a hose works well) and leaves the fluff - which does not degrade.