Quest Arrives Home to an Unexpected Surprise

Quest - First Day Home

After five hours of traveling, we made it to Quest’s new home in Omaha. Fortunately Quest slept a lot on the flights and so he was up for the new adventure of checking out his new pad and room mates.

I have an adult Dalmatian named Farley and a Border Collie / Lab mix named Cali but wanted to give Quest a chance to get used to his new pad without them around so I had my apprentice Tara take the big dogs out for a walk.

We started things off in my back yard in case Quest had to do some business (His command word for potty) and because outside is usually an easier setting for first experiences due to more space.

Quest had just finished doing some business when we were surprised with something coming from my back yard neighbor’s property.

It was great to see how Quickly Quest recovered from the unexpected sounds coming from my back yard neighbor. Many people would pick up their dog as soon as it got startled by the nail gun and try to pet the pup to console it. The problem with that sort of interaction is you can make the experience into a bad one or cause the dog to associate getting attention with getting startled.

But because I didn’t make a big deal out of it, Quest recovered right away (Much of that is due to his AMAZING Breeder Linda McSherry at Patch Mountain) and walked away from the incident with a great socialization experience that should help him be at ease around loud banging sounds for the rest of his life.

Once Quest had his fill of the back yard (Didn’t take long, it was like a million degrees outside), we headed inside so he could check out his new digs.

I didn’t spend a whole lot of time in the living room as puppies get into habits easily (such as chewing furniture, shoes, etc). By keeping Quest in his play pen area, Im able to control what he has access to chew on. Keeping your dog from developing unwanted habits is all about managing its early environment.

I had only ordered one set of the play pen sections as I wasn’t sure how much space they would take up. As you saw in an earlier post, I added a second section later to expand his area. But as I taped the below video, we were only using the single play pen.

We stated out in the play pen while my other two dogs were just about to return home from their walk with Tara.

I found it interesting that Quest was accepting of Farley’s approach, likely a result of his having the same marking as Quest’s mother and litter mates – while barking an alarm when Cali came up to the play pen.

Because Farley and Cali were so hot from their walk in the summer heat, we kept them outside of the play pen at first. I wanted to give them a chance to cool down before interacting with Quest which gave Tara a chance to get her puppy cuteness fix in.

Its always a good idea to make sure that your dogs are calm before introducing them to a puppy. Unbalanced energy can sway things in unexpected ways and during a puppy’s Critical Socialization Period, you just don’t want to take any risks.

 

In retrospect I wish I would have ordered both puppy play pens at the same time. Quest quickly got into a habit of going on the puppy pad in the first location I placed it. But later when I added the second set of play pen gates to make the area bigger, I moved the location of the puppy pad and this change caused Quest to have some accidents on the vinyl flooring. Not a biggie as the flooring makes it easy to clean up. But its always best to start things off the right way whenever possible.

So if you have the means and area, Id suggest ordering two play pens off the bat, especially if you have a pup that will grow up to weigh more than 25 lbs.

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