I have recently registered and thought I would tell you about myself and about my new puppy Maya.
About me. Well my name is Marc and I am 27 years old. I have always been a dog lover but unfortunately my parents never were and neither was my wife so alas, this is my first time as a dog owner. I have always been determined to eventually get a dog, but I held off until my wife was confident enough in me to look after it (and the house lol). I always wanted a Siberian Husky or a Utanagon, Simply because I have a very deep love and interest of Wolves, but for a number of different personal reasons, I decided a German Shepherd is the dog more suited for me, and since getting Maya, I am convinced I have made the right choice
Before I tell you about Maya, I will tell you what made my wife Janina, change her mind about owning a dog. She and I were both fortunate enough to visit her Family for 6 months (they have emigrated to Namibia). While we were there, Janinas sister decided to get a dog for safety reasons. I was thrilled, since I love dogs. we spent around 4 months with the dog, I spent a lot of time training and playing with him and Janina also grew to love him, and ultimately, we came back to England and Janina was happy for me to get my own dog.
About Maya. I found Maya on a website called Pets4homes.co.uk quite close to where I live, she was one of 3 pupps left out of a litter of 9. I saw her when she was 5 weeks old and agreed to purchase her from the breeder, incidentally she was an identical twin, which is apparently quite rare. I put a deposit down and the breeder said that she will be ready to go in about 3 weeks. He called me up on Saturday (20/10/2012) and asked if I would like to come and get her, I was quite shocked, since I wasnt expecting her until today (25/10/2012) but I immediately went and picked her up. She is a beautiful Sable Girl
The first night I introduced her to her crate, and she took to it like a duck to water. She woke up at 3 am whining (expected) and I put her in a cardboard box and brought her into my bedroom. She was fine until morning, although a little restless, she didnt whine. The following day, we started to get into a routine, I took her straight outside to "go potty" and once she was finished I gave her breakfast. we had a play and then she had a little nap, and we have been doing great ever since. The following night, I brought a matress down and stayed by her crate when she whinned and after that she was fine, the following night when she whinned, I let her go to the toilet and went straight back to bed and she was fine until morning, and then the last 2 nights, she has been perfect, waking up at 7am for "potty" and breakfast.
She has a healthy appetite, but its not greedy, or glutsy. She loves to play and after a good 30-60 minutes, she likes to settle down with a chew toy on her bed next to me, or have a little nap. She is excelent at going the toilet, she is not even 8 weeks and is able to hold her bladder through the night, and will scratch at the back door to tell me she needs to "go". She does have a little problem with Marking, at least she did have, she didnt do it yesterday and hasnt done it today (yet), but did on sunday, monday and tuesday. Hopefully I can curb it before it gets out of hand, but it is a bit frustrating, since there are no signs, she will litterally just run over to a spot and 'go', since this is territorial behavior and not actually 'needing' to go to the toilet, I will tell her sternly and firmly "NO!" and take her outside, although she is a little bit too clever for her own good, she starting using this, just to get to go 'play' outside. Apart from that and biting, she is an exceptionally (at least compared to my sister in-laws dog) and she is happy to learn and be trained. She is wary of unfamiliar things and will bark at them, but once she gets used to it, she is fine (perfect example is the washing machine).
I have noticed that she is able to hold a 'poo', a lot longer than a 'wee' even when I started to change her pet food over (gradually) she had a couple of runny poos.
Apart from the Marking which has hopefully gone now, and the biting, which I am assuming it teething, because she is not aggressive at all, and will only bite in play (if I make my hands appealing to biting) or if she sits next to me and starts chewing on my finger. Either way, it is not hard, but I want to stop it now, before she turns into a big dog and its more difficult to stop and more painful lol.
We are actively trying to socialise her, with other people, unusual items and once she gets her shots from the vet (today) with animals also. I am 100% happy with her, she has exceeded my expectations, with regard to separation anxiety (at night), familiarisation with her crate, and especially toilet training, the few minor accidents we have had, I would put down to our fault for not watching her closely enough, or marking.
So that pretty much sums up my past 5 days or so with Maya, I would be grateful for any comments, that you might have, or anything you notice that might be something to watch out for, or even any advice you might have, in general, or specifically for the minor issues she has. Thanks in advance.
Marc, Janina and Maya.