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New Puppy - How to amuse until she can get out to play...

(12 Posts)
gomez Tue 13-Sep-11 21:57:49

..somewhere other than our garden.

Asked on the puppy thread but no takers so thought I would chance my arm here. Have an 8 week old Working Cocker Spaniel in a family house. Adult at home all day (working but happy to make time for puppy); 3 children 5, 7 and 11. Eldest being quite sensible and helping with toilet training and some random ball throwing/pretend training.

But already clear she needs some good stimulation and exercise - I do know she is just a baby but she is super keen and bouncy. (Both parents were working Working Cockers if that makes sense.)

So how do we keep her entertained until after 2nd vaccinations? Can we start training - or is it pointless /stressful for all smile.

She is a wee scone however.

alp Tue 13-Sep-11 22:22:35

Hello-sorry if there was no help on the thread. When my springer was little (she's 5 months now) it was a great source of support. There are some other posters with cocker pups so they will be a help too!

At this stage just letting pup investigate and learn rules of house will be enough. Chew toys were a hit in the early days too nylabones were a fave here! A milk carton or other plastic bottle with some kibble in also keeps them occupied for a while.

I hope this helps for now!

gomez Tue 13-Sep-11 22:47:55

Auch no need to apologise and thanks for your ideas.

Bit like the kids she is not so keen on most things we have purchased as chew toys but loves a riding crop, slipper, an old pair of goggles and any empty plastic fruit boxes or yoghurt tubs! Oh and paper smile.

She just seems sooo keen to be getting on with things;loves the garden and killing flowers/leaves etc.

Hadn't thought of putting kibble in things however so will try that. Thanks again.

rollerbaby Tue 13-Sep-11 22:58:32

We've got a show cocker who is nearly 2 now. My advice would be start training asap as this is stimulation and massively tiring for them. Could just be a few commands at regular intervals in the day like when you mAke a cup of tea for example.

We started early but wished we had done more as cockers are bonkers and need discipline as they are so enthusiastic and playful.

Ours loves tissue too! Never been much of a chewer though...

gomez Tue 13-Sep-11 23:07:10

Thanks Honeymoo

She's not at all destructive (so far) with chewing so good to hear your experience.

Think we might as you say ramp up the 'training' and use that to help to stop the bouncing.

Bonkers you say, what happened to intelligent and utterly trainable..her parents her Field Trial Champs I'll have you know [I did need to google that to find out what it meant to be fair.]

tooearlytobeup Wed 14-Sep-11 07:24:11

Do you know anyone with friendly, vaccinated dogs who can come to play with her? We spent this time, getting pup used to the car by making short journeys then carrying him around so he could see people, hear different noises etc
We also started training sit, come here and down.

Pisky Wed 14-Sep-11 09:41:08

We have a working cocker pup (16w now) who is currently having a mad 5 mins playing with her toys in the kitchen while I MN...

He favourite toy at first is a small rope toy that she chews and shakes, throws and chases!

It's the intelligence that makes them both trainable and bonkers (if you don't put the work in). First command we taught ours was sit. She now has to sit and wait till we say "go on" before she gets her meals. Now we are working on down.

With practicing come / name response we started with two of us calling her back and forth for treats - but after the first few calls she twigged and started running to the other person before they called - so we had to start doing it with 3 people and changing around who called her next so she couldn't guess!

teta Wed 14-Sep-11 10:07:48

I have a 20 week old show cocker.His favourite thing is pinching the kids toys from upstairs and bringing them downstairs to play with.His second favourite thing is taking one of a pair of shoes and hiding them in the garden so we can never find a complete pair.He can get through our child gate at the top of the stairs.We blocked this off then he got his head stuck trying to get through the banisters!.Yes he loves chewing tissue-we have bits everywhere and he empties the wastepaper bin [looking for crisp packets].I caught him this morning on his back legs trying to open the front door with his paws.He has worked out by standing and leaning on doors they will open with a crash [and a very scratched door].He is totally disinterested in nylabones and doggie toys but loves kongs with peanut butter or cream cheese in.Loves proper bones and eating the kids lego and school socks.He is the cleverist dog we have ever had but i think he thinks hes a kid [4 dc's here] and not a doggrin.

rollerbaby Wed 14-Sep-11 17:00:05

Hee hee yes our cocker also thinks he is totally human and one of us.... He does know when he shouldn't be playing with my son's toys though - it is the only time he will actually drop things when I catch him taking Sophie the giraffe to his bed or carrying my son's rabbit!!!

Training wise, we got someone to help us initially when I got pregnant and was freaking out about having a puppy and a small baby, but it has been fine in general. The main thing was trying to keep him off the baby but now I let them get on with it and my 10 months old son finds it hilarious when he licks him etc.

Some of the things she suggested were: scatter food around the ground floor of your house and then let him out to find it as a command. Seeking it out takes loads of energy and is a more fun way for them to eat their kibble. On walks have a training lead to do recall with really really good treats (I mean chicken or sausage) and you need to be massively consistent for months. When they are tiny like yours they will stay close but then that changes quite quickly as they grow! Ours does sit and down very well but stay is another matter entirely... and probablyt he most useful one of all when you need them not to jump up and not run out on the street etc.

Good luck it is such a lovely age and enjoy it!

gomez Wed 14-Sep-11 22:41:06

Thanks again for the ideas. We started on the sit lark tonight which went well (ish). Also bought a lead and will start some walking around the garden with it on. DH in man style laid a scent with some roast beef - she went nuts, tracked it down and then devoured the morse slice she found. So possible some jobbie issues tomorrow.

We are having a ball however so long may it continue. I assuming it it like a newborn in that we are being lulled into false sense of security and it will all go tits up sometime soon but hey we can enjoy it whilst it lasts. Are only 10 days in so plenty time for disaster to strike..

daisydotandgertie Thu 15-Sep-11 21:00:51

Take her out too. Everywhere you can think of.

She'll need carrying because she's not had her jabs yet, but get her as well socialised as you can.

She needs to see tall men, men in hats, babies, a school playground, busses, lorries, cars, bikes, ambulances, shops, parks, people in crash hats, wheelchairs, pushchairs, walking sticks and frames, people, people and more people. Ask if your vets do a puppy class - they're invaluable.

The more she sees and hears now, the more solid and reliable she will be as an adult.

A bit of work now will reap mammoth dividends later. Enjoy it!

rollerbaby Thu 15-Sep-11 21:04:52

oh yes very good advice. and take her to the front door every time and make sure visitors pat her so she knows people at the door aren't a threat.

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