This post is part of our weekly series on raising our Vizsla puppy, Zooka.  You can use our posts as a guide to help raise your own puppy, regardless of breed. Keep in mind that different breeds might develop at different rates, so while you can do these things with any breed, your breed might need certain things at slightly different stages or ages.  Click here to see our list of all updates.

Notes from week 13:

  • Continue with housetraining
    • Since it's warm we are keeping back door open during day
    • Zooka takes himself out with easy access to back yard
    • Will need to teach to signal once we start keeping door closed
    • One accident this week during play inside – no other accidents
  • Continue training for meals
    • Progressing with everything from last week
    • Add in Shaping/Capturing
      • without objects – reward offered behaviors, such as Sit, Down, using Paw, Backing up, etc.
      • with objects
        • disc, Fitpaws pod, box, Waggle toy
        • reward any interaction with the object – touch w nose, touch w paw, step on, push, etc.
        • not looking for anything specific yet, just willingness to experiment and try things without luring/prompting
  • Play dates
    • Continued play with the Cocker Spaniel boarding with us
    • New dogs came to us, 3 from same family
      • meet one at a time
      • two were tolerant but not as playful
      • one was younger and more playful
      • good to learn not everyone wants to play hard
      • good to learn when to back off and take “no” for an answer
      • learn when to tone it down and adjust your play
    • Play at end of Puppy Class with other puppies
    • Tried play with two more boarding dogs
      • an adult Flat Coat Retriever was too rough so we ended it pretty quickly
      • played well with adult Goldendoodle, keeping play sessions short with big dogs for now
  • Field trips
    • Dog friendly stores at the outlet mall in Castle Rock
      • mostly walked the outdoor aisles
      • went in a few stores
      • practiced loose leash walking
      • practiced waiting at doorways
      • chance to explore, smell and just check things out
      • greetings with several people
        • already knows to Sit to get people to approach
        • he can stand up and wiggle as long as he's not jumping up on people
    • Local farm
      • Intro to barn cat and kittens (from a safe distance)
      • Goats (from a safe distance)
      • Horse (from a safe distance)
      • Five year old boy who loved rolling around on the grass with Zooka (up close and personal!)
    • Local park
      • checking out all the smells and sights and sounds
      • saw a family riding bicycles
      • got to meet lots of kids
        • practiced taking treats gently from kids' hands
        • greeted well mostly, a bit of jumping
        • kids were all very good and asked before petting him
        • got to meet a few adults as well
      • kids playing soccer, kids on playground equipment, people on ziplines overhead, fountains, bridges, etc.
  • Walks
    • More walks on our property
    • Focus on exploring AND tuning in with us
      • reward check in voluntarily and when asked
      • learning to keep a loose leash
    • We use a ten foot line
  • Diet and food
    • He is fully on the variety of foods we feed in our Food Stack For Dogs, except for raw meaty bones that are too tough at this stage.
    • With any chews
      • keep close eye and remove when too small if your pup will swallow too large pieces
      • can be a choking hazard
      • or might vomit up later if pieces are too big to digest
  • Nail trims / grooming
    • Continue with nail trims
      • Practice handling feet
      • Holding nails before trimming
      • Clip the very ends – careful not to cut too close
      • Sometimes can get only a nail or two done at a time
      • Most so far is nails on two full feet at one sitting
      • Only do what he can handle and be calm for
      • Can reward with treats, toys, petting or whatever the pup wants at the time
      • Remember! Goal is to build COOPERATION – goal is not to get nails trimmed at any cost
      • We never restrain our dogs for nail trims – if they are not ready to cooperate, we don't trim!

Slow motion clips with Zooka playing in his kiddie pool and puppy recess with friends.

Zooka training by working for his breakfast.

Zooka Meeting a horse and goats, plus an added distraction from a loud train.

Zooka playing with a much larger dog, Willy.

Timelapse of Zooka's outing at a local outdoor mall and greeting many different people.

Slow motion of chasing the ball with Zooka and some friends.

Week 13: Leash work with Zooka and allowing him to work through some trepidation with seeing dogs.