Success in puppy training often comes in small steps in the right direction rather than giant leaps. However, when it comes to smart puppies, sometimes the small steps come in groups and happen fast. Night one was a little rough for Cinder but she did pretty well overall. Night two was even better!
Last night, I put Cinder to bed at about 11:30PM and after less than five minutes of pitiful whining, she settled and slept. In fact, she slept all the way through to our normal morning wake-up call at 4:15AM. No messes in her crate either. She came out, went to the door with the big boys and once outside, she pottied right away. This is a big deal for a seven week old pup that just joined a new family.
Cinder's already got the idea of going potty outside and even going to the door when she needs to go. She's also got a very good memory-just like my Gilley. If she leaves her toys somewhere, she remembers exactly where they were. We got her "Pinky" (the name we gave her pink puppy Kong) out of her crate, but not her nylabone. She tired of just her Pinky and suddenly left the living room to go through the kitchen and down her hall to her crate, went in the crate and got her Nylabone. She knew exactly where to find her own toy! She left a tennis ball that went under an end table and when she got bored with the Nylabone and her Pinky, she went right to that end table to get her ball. That's pretty dang sharp for seven weeks old-remembering where toys are and finding them herself! She's also learning to come when I call and sit. In some ways with some things it helps having the boys because I think she's mimicing them when I ask them to sit for their cookies. Regardless of how or why she's learning, the point is that Cinder is learning.
Her play is getting more rough and already she displays an aptitude for intensity and fearlessness that you don't often see in other breeds at such an early age. I love that because it means she will have enough brains to learn a LOT of things fairly fast. If only she'd learn NOT to chomp Buzz's tail! While I was playing with her earlier this morning, she jumped up and didn't stick her landing, so she sort of fell and wimpered. The big boys may not like her, but they were certainly concerned as I scooped her up to comfort and check her. They both raced over to see that I didn't hurt her and tried to protect her. While she annoys them and their noses are disjointed over her presence, clearly if she's hurt, they have some concern enough to check out why. That too is a good thing-they're starting to accept her as part of the pack despite their anxieties about the rambunctious little munch monster who annoys them.
Today should be interesting as we all learn to function the whole day without Brian while he's at work. Speaking of...Gotta scoot to let her out of her crate for the next round of wound puppy play!