Tuve is doing an amazing job! We continue to work on her dog and people socialization and it is coming along nicely. She now happily plays with other dogs at the dog park and is polite when passing or meeting dogs on walks. She is still a little wary of strangers and children, but we are working hard to show her people can be trusted and most will give her cookies and love if she gives them a chance. We hope to have her take (and pass!) her Canine Good Citizen test in a few months.
Tuve’s obedience is stellar, and other than the occasional squirrel she will give you her undivided attention. We have taught her how to swim, and she loves it! She will retrieve her ball or just dive in and swim around for fun. She also likes to play fetch with her tennis ball on land and will bring it back to your hand every time. I guess living with a Labrador Retriever is rubbing off!
She is working on adding to her list of assistance skills, and so far (other than her excellent manners) her tasks include:
- “fetch” – fetching items if they are dropped (keys, pen, remote, wallet, credit card, pill bottle) or if asked to retrieve (shoes)
- “cooler” – she will fetch a small cooler which is to be an emergency bag for her Veteran, it is stored in a certain area of the house and she will go and get it from anywhere when given the “cooler” command
- “front” – when out walking, if given the “front” command Tuve will sit in front of her person to give them a personal space buffer if wanted with strangers
- “leash” – she will retrieve her leash on command and on a certain alarm sound to encourage her person to get out and about
- “up” – Tuve is learning to come and give comfort by laying across your lap or body on this command (basically Deep Pressure Therapy), she will also be learning to wake her person up from nightmares
Works in progress
- “nudge” – we are working to have her nudge the back of your leg on this command, which will then be associated with any kind of self-harming behavior such as excessive scratching, so that when she sees her person doing the behavior, she will nudge the back of their leg to get their attention to stop
- “pull” – she will pull on her rope and either open what it is attached to (fridge, cabinet door) or pull whatever it is attached to around the house (laundry basket)
Overall Tuve is a sweet and incredibly loving dog, my husband calls her my shadow as she follows me everywhere. She is a big snuggler and just wants to please. We are very excited to find her the perfect partner so she can share her love with someone who needs a faithful companion. We hope to be looking for her Veteran in a few months!