Saturday, April 19, 2014

Oreo...she's quite a cookie

I figured it was time for a little Oreo update. First, the bad news.

We are learning that Miss Oreo thinks the house and yard are hers to protect and that she will growl when she sees anyone or anything outside, maybe even let out a bark, and that she will growl almost every time the front door opens if she cannot immediately see who it is. This is not an acceptable behavior because she should never growl, and her barking should be reserved for alerting to a seizure only.

She also is trying, much like a toddler, to test and push her boundaries here. And I must confess, we were letting her get away with way more than any of our other girls ever did! She was not always staying in command and would basically do what she wanted when she wanted. And just like what happens to every other parent that spoils their child, she was getting a wee bit out of control and we were constantly making excuses for her because she is just such a good dog in comparison to any other dog her age. Also, her being naughty only ever happens at home. When we are out in public and she is in full on "work" mode, she is just perfect.


case in point...staying in the perfect DOWN command while at Children's Hospital

And let's face it, when it's your dog that sniffs out an ear infection in your child who cannot tell you their ear hurts so you wouldn't have realized it yourself until other symptoms began to appear, you tend to be able to overlook the little imperfections in behavior.

However, it get to the point where I knew we were not doing the right thing by Oreo, the people who took so much time to train her, or to Tess, to let her continue with her "bad" behaviors. So I put in a call to the lead trainer at 4Paws and told him everything that was going on.

I got a much needed training refresher and pep talk and am now implementing all of the suggestions that Jeremy told me to try. There is still room for improvement with Oreo's behavior, but she is definitely responding positively to me being more firm with her and not making excuses for her when she is being naughty.

And now for the good news.

We just love her to pieces. She is an amazing dog and makes Tessie laugh and giggle more often than we have heard in such a long time. She is pre-alerting to Tess's seizures, and again, alerting to the ear infection really just blew me away! She is very loyal to Tess and is quite the mother hen with her.

The first time that Oreo saw Tess get PT, she did not like it one bit. She got between Tess and the PT person and then, after a bit, Oreo literally laid down on the floor and put her paws over Tess so they couldn't move her anymore, as if to say, "Leave my girl alone!" We were cracking up.


Oreo laid right on top off Tess during a PT session. She was done letting her girl be moved all around.



She also does not like it when anyone goes to lift Tess, especially if she is not super familiar with who is doing the lifting. She stays right there until Tess is safely put back down. Oreo gets very upset if we close Tess's bedroom doors (like to change her) and she cannot get in. She will scratch at the door and whimper until she is let in and can see Tess. If we bring Tess into the bathroom, Oreo follows and will lay down and wait until we bring Tess out.

One morning Oreo was laying on the floor in the kitchen while Ellie ate her breakfast and Tess was in her bedroom still in bed. Tess likes to wave her arms around sometimes when she is lying down and Oreo must have seen them out of the corner of her eye because she scrambled to her feet and ran in to check on Tess (it probably looked like Tess could have been seizing to Oreo), and when she saw that Tess was fine, she came back out into the kitchen. It's really amazing just how aware of Tess that Oreo is all of the time.


look at Tessie smiling at her dog!

and look at the two of them looking at each other during the photo...so cute!

We've only had Oreo for two and a half months and I already couldn't imagine our home without her. And just like all our other girls, she basically has the hubs wrapped around her little...well...paw.

To be honest, she has all of us wrapped around her little paw.

our newest princess




5 comments:

  1. I can't tell you how happy this post made me. I knew that Oreo would be good for Tess....the bonus is that everyone loves her. There's something magical about dogs that can lift the spirits of the loneliest. Their "I'm gonna love you no matter what" demeanor truly makes them our best friends. I love seeing pictures of her and Tess...you can actually see how much they love each other. ((HUGS))

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  2. I always love your posts, but your post about Oreo really made me happy. (You may have noticed that I'm a dog lover.:)) I especially love the pictures of Tess and Oreo looking at each other. Joanna, have you thought about Oreo's reaction to the barrage of fireworks here on the island in the summer? Hope she's been trained to ignore them.

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  3. OK Miss Joanna - I just spent the last hour getting all caught up on the Reidy Family adventures. Woohoo! One thing stood out - your love and fierce determination to do the best you can for Tess, and your big girls, too. Praying for you!
    Lana
    PS - I officially want a service dog now! :)

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  4. yep, most of the pups will go thru the "testing stage"...funny when you think about it, not unlike toddlers! Been raising service dogs for almost 12 years now. Just raised one that was in another home first and she was wonderful for the first month and then ran me ragged for the next three! She came around and I have high hopes for her but WOW, did we work hard! Once the love and loyalty really lock in you're golden (pun intended). Goldens are my favorite to raise so we just got another one!

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