Sunday, February 19, 2012

A 16 Week Old #SAGApupVolt

This morning Volt weighed in at 15.2kg, which means a gain of only 200g in the last week, his smallest gain to date. He is now eating 160g of food 3 times a day and he LOVES his food! He sits and waits until he is told he may eat, but he keeps an eye on his bowl while he waits. Ooh and I noticed this week that Volt's "big" teeth are coming in in the front of his upper and lower jaws!
One of these days he will be expected to spend time at the SAGA kennels with the other dogs in training. He will spend one week at kennels AT LEAST every two months. The reason they stay at kennels so often is so that they see the kennels as "home" when we hand them over at the end of the puppy-raising phase. If they spent no time there and suddenly have to live there for 6 months during training, they can get very stressed and depressed and are not able to move forward with their training until they've "settled in".

We have discovered- by accident- that one of Volt's favourite games is playing with an ice cube! He runs around with it in his mouth and chases it when it slides and bounces on the floor! Its so funny!

It has been so very hot this week...

We did some more "drown proofing" this week as the blistering heat in Gauteng was perfect for it! Volt is not mad about going into the pool at all which is great ('coz he's not allowed to swim in a pool) but he is still not quite sure where the steps are. If our pool was fenced it wouldn't be an issue, but because its open we can't risk him falling in and drowning because he can't get out. We will have a couple more sessions until he is comfortably swimming straight to the steps on his own and not trying to climb up the side of the pool.
I did giggle when I looked out the window and spotted him lounging in the sun on the towel I'd used to rub him dry!


We missed puppy class this week because I was so busy working on Valentines Day! I was sad to miss it, but we made up for it by attending a group walk with a couple of other guide-dogs-in-training at Northgate on Wednesday morning! Volt and I walked with Tuppence (a week older than Volt) and Emerson (who goes back to SAGA for formal training tomorrow) and their mommies. We climbed stairs, checked out escalators, went in the lifts, walked through the parking lot, and walked through the wide corridor behind the tills in the Pick 'n Pay. The pups were very well behaved and I got a few tips from the other two ladies who are raising their 8th and 10th puppies!

Tuppence, Emerson and Volt greeting each other very enthusiastically
Emerson and Tuppence walking through Pick 'n Pay
On Wednesday, my hubby worked on backwashing the pool to get the Kreepy working properly, and cleaned out the koi pond pump, all of which was very wet work and involved the use of the hosepipe! The hose has a couple of leaks, which make big puddles under the tap, and whilst they don't last long they lasted long enough for Volt to discover them when he was outside for his "solo" time in the evening. My hubby found him first- sitting on the step outside the back door waiting to be let back in- and started giggling. I could barely contain my laughter but I managed to get a couple of photographs before I hosed him off!

On Saturday morning, we headed for the Horse Of The Year show in Kyalami where a friend of mine was competing on a couple of Friesian stallions. I thought the crowds, dogs and horses would be an interesting experience for Volt. The first horse we came across- a big Friesian waiting his turn for the in-hand dressage- didn't phase Volt at all! He reacted as if the horse was a big dog and all he wanted to do was play! I was a little surprised, but given how there's very little that freaks Volt out I was pleased he wasn't cowering. There were several dogs at the show and he wanted to "talk" to all of them, but he stayed on-lead and we didn't socialised with many dogs. Unfortunately his training vest isn't the best quality and I discovered that one of the ties has all but come off the vest completely so he couldn't wear it, but he interacted with a lot of people and whilst he was excited I thought he was very well behaved for a 4 month old puppy.

This week's "did you know" Twitter post:
Did You Know: Guide-dog pups are are trained to walk slowly up and down all kinds of different staircases! 

click on the puppy to make a donation to SAGA

Don't forget to check out the Twitter hash-tag #SAGApupVolt to see regular updates on my puppy raising adventure!