Thursday, 19 September 2013

Bowel control

When I took Ruby to the vet yesterday, I did not expect the medication to kick in so quickly. After putting puppy to bed at 10:30pm last night, I woke at 3:00am wondering why there had been no 'call' from downstairs. I went down to see if the dog was ok, only to find Ruby fast asleep with not a poop in sight. She woke up when I switched the light on but seemed quite calm.

So out we went into the night. And as if to order, the deed was done. She seemed to have developed a measure of control over her bowel that I would not have believed just a few hours ago.

After a lot of praise and stroking, I walked Ruby back to the house. She was now wide awake and seemed keen on play-time. To be honest, much as I have already grown fond of the little darling, a doggy play session at 3am was not my idea of a good way to spend the graveyard shift. So in the crate she went. To be fair, she settled down and seemed to accept that sleep was the only option. That is, until I left the living room to go upstairs. She began to cry and whine and it lasted at least half an hour. I wasn't giving in though. The last thing I want is for a little Border Collie puppy getting used to having a 'mad half hour' at 3am every morning. So we put up with the noise and eventually she calmed down and went to sleep.

The noises from downstairs started up again at around 5:15am and this time Sarah went down to see Ruby. Another little milestone awaited. Although she was calling us, she had NOT gone to the toilet in her crate. Sarah took her outside and she promptly did her 'business' in the garden. 

So in the space of 12 hours she had been woken and pooed on demand then whined to let us know she needed the toilet while managing to hold it in until we took her out.

For the benefit of anyone who has got this far, I do apologise for rambling on about poop but to be fair to the author, puppies do a lot of it and it IS a big deal in getting them trained not to do it inside.

Ruby has been taking her medication very well. In fact she seems to love it. One of the 2 prescriptions tastes like banana (apparently) and she really likes it. It does make the whole thing a doddle. I would hate to have to try to force medicine down a reluctant dog (although I'm sure that may be something I have to face up to in the future).

During the day today she has been more settled. Yesterday she was constantly trying to herd Rhianna but today she seems largely to have got over it. That said, this evening she did have a little moment where she was barking and jumping/nipping at me. It was out of the blue so I'm not sure what set it off as I wasn't walking around. I was sat on the sofa. Just an excited puppy probably. 

Overall, it's been a good 6 days. Taking into account the diarrhoea, change of environment, separation from her pack, litter, and mother and having to cope with a new family, Ruby has handled it brilliantly. She generally sits on command, is quickly learning to toilet outside (even with the diarrhoea) and is getting into a routine of sleeping in her crate.

When we have little problems such as a bout of barking/herding or the odd toilet malfunction it is easy to think things are going wrong. But the bigger picture is that we have a little dog who is really coping very well in her new surroundings. I am looking forward to when she can properly go out for walks and socialise with other dogs. After all, the first 8 weeks of her life was spent with a big pack of dogs 24/7. She's bound to feel a little disorientated.

Ruby sat on Rhianna's legs