Gia is a 14 month old brindle beauty who weighs about 45lbs. She is full of life and very affectionate! She loves balls, and treats, and enjoys her training sessions, as well as her play sessions.
“Gia had a great week. She has come such a long way with Khloe. They can now play and don’t bark at each other. When we are not able to go outside, we will walk around inside and practice training. I will have Gia sit and make eye contact before someone approaches her with a treat or to pet. I will also put a treat on the ground for her to “leave it” and once she got good at leaving it, I would walk away to have her maintain her focus on me and then come back to treat.”
“This week Gia has been working on her focus, pulling, and barking when she’s excited. I will put her in a place with no distractions at first and give her treats. Then I would make her pay attention to me while I move the treat out of sight. When she tried to look for the treat, I would give her the “watch me” command. When she looked back at me, I rewarded her with treats. After a couple repetitions of this, I would change it up and put the treat on the ground instead and then tell her to leave it and watch me. We are starting to work on these exercises while there are distractions around us too.
For pulling while we walk around, I keep high value treats with me. When she starts pulling, I will stop and wait for her to loosen up and turn towards me. She will come sit and then I reward her with the treats. I’m really happy with the progress Gia has shown this week!”
This week Gia continues to work on crate training and learning it is a safe place to be. She has been working on the "watch me" command and her "house" command, where she will go to her crate and sit when asked. Somehow this week she got a roll of toilet paper while I was out. The weird thing is, she was in her crate the whole time, so I don't know when she got it. Anyway, she had it in shreds all over her crate and when I came back she was sitting in the middle of it with her head on her paws and big, "I'm sorry" eyes. I couldn't even be mad at her.
She's doing great with asking "please," like when she wants to get on the bed she sits and places her paw on it and waits. She's so smart and loving!
Gia has been working on crate training and learning to appreciate her crate and feel comfortable when I leave her alone. She now knows when she is told to house to go into her crate and sit down. The big thing is leaving her alone, because she does start to bark. I've been leaving her, waiting for her to stop barking, then returning, and praising, and treating her. She will bark for a full minute, but then get quiet. This is much, much faster than when we started. It's still a work in progress, but we are getting there.
Gia will stay say, "Please" before jumping onto the bed. Sometimes she jumps halfway up and it's like she forgot to use her back legs and just flops over.
We played outside some this week, but it was really hot for her, so we invented some indoor games. We are working on her dropping a ball when you don't have another one in your hand. We've also been working on loose leash walking. She's doing okay, except when she's really excited.
Gia has been great this week! She is such a sweet companion and has learned so many new skills so quickly! When she wants to get up on the bed or have a ball thrown she will ask, “Please” to get it done. It only took six days for her to learn it. She’s so gentle and caring. At night she sleeps in her crate, but I leave the door open in case she wants to cuddle. She comes trotting over really quietly so she doesn’t wake me up. It’s almost like she’s intentionally tip-toeing to be quiet! She will “ask” to get on the bed. When I say, “Okay,” she climbs up and puts her face and head on the pillow right next to me and goes to sleep. I am writing about this because it’s a story about her gentle, sweet nature. If you sneeze or yawn loudly, she will run over to check on you! She is amazing! A very smart and caring dog who seems to want to do anything to please you.
Gia accomplished a lot this week! We worked on stay, leave it, sit and down. Her favorite toy is a red ball. She gets so excited to play with it. I'm teaching her patience and to follow cues during this excitement period. She is able to drop the ball on my "out" command. She has also learned to sit and stay while I walk away from her. When I call, "Come!" she runs to me and sits, waiting for the next command. I will often reward her by throwing the ball. What's also great about Gia is she will follow commands, even when friends are trying to distract her. Her patience and discipline is amazing! Gia is a sweet girl, easy to please. I can now tell her to "Leave it" and she will drop the ball and wait. I can pick it up and she will wait for the next command. I also taught her to ask "Please?" by putting her paw on my hand or knee, then telling her okay to take what she wants or jump on the bed. Teaching her to ask permission will help her in so many things in life!
Puppies are cute and naughty! Princess Gi-Gi has proven to be extremely patient with the influx of puppies around here. They go to the yard together where GiGi chases the ball and the puppies chase her. They bite her tail, chew on her neck, and tug her ears. She is extremely patient. On occasion, she will give an appropriate correction, but for the most part she is very stoic. She's cute, they're cute, but they are so naughty!
"Okay, the Princess GiGi thing has gone to her head. First, she discovered my bed is more comfortable than hers and I let that slide because she deserves a little spoiling. This week she figured out that the pillows on the bed are even better! Brat!
Also, yesterday, she coaxed one of our more serious dogs to play with her. He hardly every plays with any of the other dogs. He loves his humans. But her exuberance finally got to him and he jumped around with her for a while. I was so happy for him and so proud of her!"
"Every Tuesday the blankets in Gia's crate get washed. Every Tuesday I fold them neatly and put them back in the crate. And every Tuesday the little princess goes over and inspects my work. It never passes muster. She goes in and pushes, and pulls, and pokes, and prods until she makes herself a big messy nest. Then she glares at me, letting me know I've failed the test again, before plopping down. Such a brat! #PrincessGiGi"
"The princess hates her crate. This is entirely understandable. At first, she tried to destroy it. Then she complained, LOUDLY. Now she’s resorted to giving me the sad face. I’m trying to teach her it’s a safe place, but she is breaking my heart. Luckily, she’s only in there a short time, for like 20 minutes, 3X a day while I go eat. I’ve renamed her Princess Gi-Gi."
The little princess continues to do well and has adjusted to life in the prison nicely. Her manners are improving and she learns quickly. For the pat two weeks she and Stewie have been getting to play and rough house till they are exhausted. This socialization has been good for them, so even if it has cut into some of her outside training time, they're so adorable together I wouldn't do anything differently.
Gia had an interesting week! She went on two outings! The first one was too overwhelming for her with lots & lots of dogs, people and noise, so she came back early. She does fine with the loud noises here, but maybe all of those things at once were just too much. Her second one was to Lowes & I’m told she enjoyed herself. She also greets people here with a happy tail and we treat her like a princess.
Gia has made a smooth adjustment and I'm more attached to her every week. She is social with people and other dogs. She's also a quick learner and loves to go outside to train. Her separation anxiety is slowly improving and I can leave her alone for a longer time.
People keep telling me how pretty Gia is, but I think she looks like a love child of a Tasmanian devil and a hyena. After two weeks, I've realized how sweet, affectionate and smart she is, and now I think she's an absolute beauty. She has stolen my heart.
Gia is such an affectionate little girl! Because she is new to the program and just out of surgery, she has only met the other dogs briefly, but she seems to be comfortable around them. She has been working this week on basic obedience... Sit, down, watch and stay.