Friday, June 29, 2012

The Long, Long Car Ride

As some of you may know, our little family is embarking on a 25-hour journey today to New York.  We are making the pilgrimage home to introduce the Milt to the fam.  Last year I went home for the entire summer, but this year I didn't want to keep Milton away from his daddy too long, so it will just be a two week vacation.  This little jaunt is also to fulfill my own desire of a cross country road trip. All of the naysayers who spoke out against it actually encouraged me to do it! 

Leaving Milton at home while I flew to New York, was not an option for me.  These first few puppy months are integral to Milton's training (pottie, leash, chewing), and with Jeff working such long hours, I did not want Milt neglected at home.  The more we train the pup now, hopefully the better he will be in the fall when school starts up again.

I did consider flying with Milton as a carry on, but I thought that could easily develop into a traumatizing experience.  I didn't want to risk the little guy whining/barking or getting sick.  Plus I was a little nervous that he would keep on growing and not fit in a crate when the time came to return to Texas. 

Quite the trip

To prepare Milton for this trip, I have been taking him on little car rides around our neighborhood.  Milton and I look at all the pretty houses and daydream.  Milton sits in my lap, so I can pet him and keep him calm.  This is not the safest option, so we now have a puppy seatbelt along with a travel crate all prepared for the long ride.

Milton all ready to go.

On Milton's first car rides, he cried and shook for the majority of the drive.  I tried to encourage him to like the car by giving him pieces of milk bone or bits of dog food before, during, and after the ride.  By now, he is much more relaxed and will try to look out the windows and eventually just doze off.

What does a Milt need for such an incredible journey? Well, let's see:

1.  Dog food
2.  Portable dog bowls
3.  Dog treats
4.  Travel crate with sleeping blanket
5.  Puppy pads
6.  Resolve carpet cleaner
7.  Chew toys
8.  Bitter apple spray
9.  Heart worm pill
10.  Puppy shampoo

I am certain there are a few more odds and ends, bits and bobs, I am missing.  From now on, I'm packing for two.

Milton thought we were kicking him out.

Milt and his Monkey

The first leg of our trip is ten-hours from Dallas, Texas to Clarksville, Tennessee where Jeff's brother and his family live.  We will spend all day Saturday visiting with them and then depart very early Sunday morning for the remainder of the drive - 15 hours.  I have absolutely no idea how this whole escapade is going to turn out.  We will continuously blast the air conditioning, routinely pet Milton, and of course frequently stop for our favorite treat, Dairy Queen, or simply DQ.

Does anyone have any tips on how to keep a puppy happy in the car?  Let me know if you do!  On Monday, I will post a photo montage of our grand adventure...

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Sweet Goldendoodle Dreams

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When we invited this goldendoodle beast to join us in our home, we needed to find a spot for him to sleep.  Jeff was adament that Milton would slumber in a big, lonely crate way downstairs far, far away from us.  Later we read a little doggie literature, and we learned that puppies need to sleep with the pact. Since we're the alpha female and male, we understand this philosophy -  we're Milton's dog pact, and he needs us.  So this cozy family of three bunks together.

Does Milton sleep in our bed?  No.  Do I kind of want him to?  Absolutely, but I think later on when he has reached 75 - 90 lbs we might regret it especially since we sleep in a double bed.  When I tell people the double is our bed of choice, everyone is shocked we do not own a king or at least a queen.  We never minded before, but now in proportion to Milton's crate, our bed is looking a little small...

Little pup in lockdown

 This is Milton the goldendoodle's EliteField 3-Door Folding Dog Crate Cage Kennel measuring in at 48".  Fancy, I know.  Even I fit in it.

Milton and Momma

Jeff too.
Daddy, Momma, & the Milt
Jeff and I vacillated for a long time on what type of crate to purchase.  You want your dog to regard the crate as a cave, so he or she feels safe and wants to hunker down to sleep.  Many people recommended the standard plastic crate, but due to our hot climate, we chose a wire crate because it is completely open and airy.  Crates can be expensive so after checking Wal-Mart and PetSmart, we ordered this one from EBAY at a bid of $70. 

 We place a black blanket over the crate to achieve the den feel, but we leave a little area open, so the pup can still keep us in view.  Milton is not happy resting in his crate throughout the day (he would rather be in the cool kitchen or bathroom), but he does not mind sleeping in there.  We always lure him to bed by dropping a few pieces of milkbone inside. Likewise, we make certain he has at least one toy and his baby blanket with him.  Milton loves his blanket because it was a gift from his breeder with his littermates' scent on it.  It is a sweet reminder of his early days.
Benefits of 48" wire crate:
1.  The large size allows for flexibility as your dog grows; however, there is a wire divider, so the crate can be made smaller.  Milton only sleeps in the first fourth of the crate, so hopefully this will prevent crate pottie.  Dogs are reluctant to go to the bathroom where they sleep, and thus far no accidents!
2.  The flooring is plastic, so spills can be easily cleaned up.
3.   3-doors allow for easy mess removal. 
4.  The thick metal wiring discourages chewing.

See the below link if you are in the market for one:

Milton getting his bed ready
Nighttime has been an adventure.  When we first received Milton at 8-weeks old, he whined to get up at least once nightly.  With puppies, they tend to be able to hold their pottie for their age plus one, so at two months old, Milton could hold it for three hours.  That first week was tiresome with Milton waking in the middle of the night and then bright and early again by 6A.M.  When Milton cried to get up mid-night, we always made certain that he had slept for a good three - four hours so that we knew his whining was bathroom related and not just a petulant puppy.

 I'm not a night owl, and wandering outside in my hot pink bathrobe at odd hours is not my favorite.  Jeff had some interesting conversations with people returning from the bars, but I just got eaten up by mosquitoes.   We understand though how uncomfortable it must be for the Milt, so we don't mind letting him out, but it did certainly take a toll on our sleep sanity.  Thankfully now at 12-weeks, Milton is sleeping through the entire night.

 Milton is a ball full of energy in the morning, so gone our my peaceful days of lounging in bed and then leisurely waking to drink coffee and hunch over my computer screen.  Now, it is up and out the door for pottie, return and feed Milton, then get ready for a long walk to entertain and tire him out for the day.  Oh, the joys of owning a dog...  We wouldn't change it for the world.
Big belly man

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

New Dog Out and About in Dallas

Jeff and I are making a concerted effort to socialize Milton and expose him as much as possible to "human" society.  We want to ease him in wherever and whenever we can.  Since moving from New York to Texas, I have been quite surprised by how much more acceptable it is to bring your dog out and about town.  I figure this dog friendliness is due to the warmer climate and less dirt and grime associated with rain and snow.  It could just be that good, old Southern hospitality as well.  There is also a notable difference if you live in a metropolitan versus rural area regardless of what region of the U.S. you call home.  Citified dogs seem to have a little more "culture," or perhaps their owners are more insistent, so dogs seem to be allowed into more venues than if you live in a small town.

For instance, Half Price Books is a fantastic local Texas chain that allows you to browse for books and sit with your pup while you read.  Other bookstores, like Barnes & Noble, will allow you to walk in with your dog, pick a book, and leave, but Half Price allows the luxury of reading with fido.  The only hard and fast rule is that dogs cannot enter the cafe.  A dog can never be anywhere in the vicinity of food preperation due to sanitary reasons.  Recently when Jeff made a solo visit, the cafe employees were sweet enough to watch Milton while Jeff went to order a drink.  Excellent customer service really does make an impact on patronization.

Jeff and the Milt waiting to enter

Of course certain rules still apply - keep your dog on his leash and clean up after him or her if needbe

A content dad with his equally content pup

Taking a snooze

Besides the veterinarian's office and Half Price Books, so far we have brought Milton inside a Starbucks, Michael's Arts & Crafts, a gas station, and Crate & Barrel (I ordered via phone and carried him in for the pickup).  I have started to call ahead before planning my daily outings to see if there is any way to include my pup.  It never hurts to ask - grocery stores are a definite no but pet stores will always welcome.  A general rule of thumb is the smaller your dog, the easier it will be to include the dog especially if he or she can squeeze into your handbag and is portable.  When autumn returns, I will return to teaching, and Milton will spend a large portion of his day alone. So, now is my time to really bond and show him the world. 

Grabbing a mid-afternoon coffee

Final note, the below link takes you to a comprehensive list of Dallas dog friendly restaurants, with outside porches, that cater to the canine set even if other patrons grimace.We discovered this informative list while searching around to figure out local restaurants where we could dine out with the Milt. If a restaurant wishes to service dogs, they need to have a special license and absolutely no food prep (concocting a cocktail or grilling a hamburger) can be done outside. Many restaurants will even ask if they can provide drinking water for the pup.

If you own a dog, I would look around to see if you can find a similar list for your locale. The more we include Milton in our lives, the better his disposition due to energy expended and subsequent absence of boredom. I know it can be difficult to coordinate your comings and goings with your dog, but with a little extra planning, it really can be an enjoyable experience for both of you!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Puppy Photo of the Week

Milton is growing at a frenzied pace, so we needed to snap a photo while I am still able to hold him.  Every day it becomes increasingly difficult to haul him up and down the stairs, and I always maintain the strong two hand grip to prevent slipage.  Well of course, big Milt  now has the capability to walk on his own without fear of falling through the steps, but sometimes he is a little too sleepy or tired to make the effort.  So, his Momma's got to help him out.  Both Jeff and I wish we could freeze Milt in puppyhood, but we just keep on feeding him, so we have affectionately deemed Milt, "Big Belly Man."  See the immense belly below. 

Milton and his Momma

See photograph caption.  This past weekend Jeff and I attended a friend's wedding, and Jeff pointedly asked me to stop comparing Milton to other people's children.  When numerous couples told us about their newborn babies, I immediately launched into stories about our new bundle of joy.  I mean the similarities are beyond overwhelming - early morning crying (in our case barking), intense potty training, around the clock feedings, and of course the constant vigilancy to prevent rug soiling, sneaker chewing, and death by electrical shock.  The separation anxiety is horrible, and I delay leaving for grocery shopping and yoga as long as possible.

The only main difference I see is my kid has fur, and I am highly offended that most restaurants and all churches will not allow him entrance.  Ok, I know I have taken puppy ownership a little seriously, but in the battle of nature vs. nurture, we handpicked the breed to accomplish the nature bit, so now I am going to nurture the heck out of him.  Hopefully this playful puppy matures into a sweet dog.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

How Does Milton Measure Up?

Our little goldendoodle, Milton, arrived to Texas at a measly 7lbs, but he is swiftly gaining lots of weight.  Everything's bigger in Texas, right?  Milton's final poundage should hopefully be somewhere between 70 - 95 lbs.  He will be a big dog for sure, but goldendoodles seem to store a lot of bulk in their fur with a lightweight body hidden underneath.

To chart Milton's foray into adulthood, monthly we will seat him on the same chair in our living room to document his growth.  These shots will directly go against our mantra of "No Milton on the furniture or in the bed."  Likewise, the wood of this particular chair is as soft as a hot dog in Milton's world, so it is highly susceptible to little fangs.  Regardless, we will do anything for a good shot.  Here is the June installation:

Milton sitting pretty

 Despite our best intentions on the no furniture policy, see the below.  Early this morning, I noticed Milton atop the counch when he barked to show how proud he was of himself.  Some dog.

Tricky Milton slipped through the banister

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

First Puppy Playdate

Not only has Milton made lots of human friends, he is now working on those of his own kind.  Jeff and I want Milton to be well socialized from the start, so he is not overly timid or too aggressive.  We want a happy puppy who aims to please everyone he meets.  Overall, we just want to be comfortable taking him to an outdoor cafe or introducing him to a child without worry of him snarling or shying away. 

So last week, my good friend, Cait, who lives downstairs, brought her black Labrador retriever/German pointer mix, Sadie, up to visit with Milton.  As I held Milton by Sadie, Milton's little tail was wagging furiously, while Sadie gave a friendly stare to this wiggling bundle.  Milton was seven pounds of energy racing all over the apartment followed by seventy pound Sadie who seemed to know just what to do with a frisky, little puppy.

Both Cait and I were amazed at how gentle and careful Sadie was with the little guy.  Despite Milton's obnoxious behavior at times, Sadie never attempted to retaliate beyond a playful swat.  Weighing in at much more, Sadie really could do some damage, but I think her motherly instinct held her back.  There is only about a 10-month age difference between Sadie and Milton, but although Milton is small now, he is going to be a big boy later on.  I think Milton and Sadie will eventually be boyfriend and girlfriend, but for now, Sadie is just Milton's "Big Momma."

Of course a little bit of sniffing needed to ensue

Milton automatically laid over to show his submission to Sadie

Milton liked to antagonize Sadie by yipping and nipping at her

Sadie would give Milton a playful paw every now and again to put him in his rightful place

Milton acted all big and bold, but after each attack quickly retreated to his hovel by the front door

Best buddies

Monday, June 18, 2012

Puppy Photo of the Week

On a recent outing to a local playground, little Milton rested atop a humongous, bright blue hippopotamus with a wide open mouth.  I'm certain that hippo could fill some tykes with dread, but Milton rode that hippo like it was nothing.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Milton the Goldendoodle's Pack of Friends

Milton is fast and furious with making friends. He is still very sleepy, but whenever visitors stop by he is always licking noses, wagging his tail, and ready to play.  Since he is just a little puppy, he quickly peeters out and sluggishly retreats to his cool hovel by the front door.  Despite his unpredictable bursts and lulls of energy, he is quite the popular guy.

Rhyne, Milton's prime choice for a quick snooze

Cait, Milton's very kissable downstairs neighbor

Jeff, Milton's other friendly downstairs neighbor

Tina, giver of Milton's very first outfit - a striped "hoodie"

Matt, no longer a wolf pack of one

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Shoes Galore

One thing we know about our goldendoodle, Milton, is he has a shoe fetish.  He really enjoys sleeping sprawled out over our shoes.  He has engaged in some delicate mouthing of our footwear but nothing too destructive so far.  Habits form quickly, so even if I see Milton chewing on my old college shower flip flops (purple ones below), I need to stop the playfulness immediately.  It is always best to nip these things in the bud.

Milton's shoe size, so he fits right in.

Sleepy boy
Milton seems to enjoy our scent; I don't know if we do

It looks like Milton dropped a little something in daddy's shoe.

Too tempting

Since this little photo shoot, all shoes have been promptly stowed away.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Puppy Photo of the Week

Each Sunday I will post my best Milton the Goldendoodle photograph for that week.  The photo will highlight his sweet nature, mischievious streak, or relaxed disposition.  See the below:
"Quality Time with Dad who Gets Home too Late to See my Naughty Side"

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Rainy Day with the Goldendoodle

First of all, I had a rather pleasant post all prepared with cuddly photographs for today, but after yesterday's notable incident, that post was massively overshadowed by this dark and dismal one.

Since we brought Milton the goldendoodle home last Friday, Jeff and I have prided  ourselves on the fact that Milton has only gone #1 in the apartment.  We think he is so polite, conscientious, and well mannered that he innately knows that making a bowel movement inside is extremely uncouth and will offend his parents.  We rationalize that urinating inside is simply not his fault because his little bladder can only hold a teeny, tiny amount. 

As the stay at home parent for the summer, I took the lead on Project Potty Training for our new dog.  Potty training is incredible "unfun" and requires an immense amount of supervision, effort, and pure willpower.  In order to be properly housebroken, puppies need to be watched constantly.  You can never turn your back, even for a second, which has led to a lot of stress and paranoia on my part.  We have baby gated off the kitchen and bathroom, and keep the guest bedroom door closed, so that we eliminate his ability to wander off into a dark corner.  New puppies typically feel the urge to relieve themselves after a nap, meal, or playtime, also every hour on the hour.  So, basically that is all day, every day, the total day.  We live on the third floor of our apartment complex, so it has been a lot of hot hoofing.  I average about fifteen trips up and down those stairs everyday.

Carefree, silly Milton down by the pool, not at all worried about his potty training progress.

So, what is our strategy?  How do we hope to quell the beast?  I watch Milton constantly.  Any sign of excretion - pacing, sniffing the floor, walking in circles, or an erect tail is automatic cause for expulsion from the house.  The only time our apartment is safe from the potential for disaster is the 45 minutes after Milton returns from a trip outside or when he is taking his usual, long siesta on the tile by the front door. Other than that, I am all over him like a bad itch.  By day's end the dog cannot wait for his daddy to get home, so his crazy mom will get off his back.  I have even heard Jeff admiringly boast to our friends, "Heidi is like a hawk when it comes to the potty training." Secretly, I take pride in this lofty compliment; however, yesterday my hawk eye was cloudy.

Yesterday afternoon, it thundered, it lightninged, and it poured.  Did I want to go out there?  Frankly, no.  Was I a little lax on the hourly potty schedule?  Perhaps yes, but it is questionable.  After Milton woke from another one of his epic naps, we quickly charged out for a fast #1 and retreated.  After that (I blame the rain), we were at each other's throats - Milton nibbling on our couch and nipping my legs, while I sprayed Grannick's Bitter Apple (taste deterrent for dogs) to quench the biting and dissipate the escalating tensions.  When I humbly told Milton, I would fix his dinner and walked into the adjacent room, what do I turn to see but this:

Dirty dog

I know it's vile.  I know it's foul.  I know some of you are wondering why I would post such a picture on the World Wide Web.  Well, you need to understand the gravity of the situation.  I was incredibly dismayed.  The day before we had ZERO accidents.  Not a droplet or a drop to be found.  Why now this?  From the trail he left, it seems to have been done in haste. This leads me to think it was out of spite, but I can never know for sure. 

Well, I gave my usual scream of "No, no, no," grabbed Milton, and dashed for the door.  Of course, I needed to stop to shove his little nose at our potty bell, we hope one day he will ring on his own, and frantically ran down the stairs chanting my usual mantra of "Milton goes potty outside.  Milton goes potty outside."  I am certain that by now every person in our apartment building knows Milton's name and that "Big boys potty outside, not in."

Of course with the rain, Milton had to make the most of it galloping up grassy inclines and somersaulting into mud puddles.  So his poor mother not only had to clean his poop but the dirty dog as well.

Wet rat

Escape attempt

After the scary bathtub ordeal was over, and Milton had been toweled off, he was quite contrite.  Well, actually he was sweet as pie.

Milton squeezed in and cuddled up on my feet while I was cooking dinner.

So, are we dropping him off at the pound tomorrow?  Will we beseech the breeder to take him back, or beg one of you to adopt?  No, we are still crazy in love with our Milt.  Did he later that night piss on our carpet?  Yes.  Every day is a journey.  At least he gives me something to write about.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Poor Goldendoodle Parenting

As new parents, Jeff and I are bound to mess up at some point.  Well, we did on  Day Number Two big time.  When Milton arrived to Dallas, the breeder left us with the puppy food (Kirkland Signature Super Premium Puppy Chicken, Rice, & Vegetable Formula) that Milton had been introduced to for the past few weeks after weaning off his mother's milk.  She gave us two very small baggies of this high quality food that unfortunately is only available at Costco.  Since we just renewed our Sam's Club membership, Costco did not seem to be a viable choice for us.  We quickly began to run out of Milton's puppy food, so silly us we decided  to mix Purina Puppy Chow from Wal-Mart with his original food.  Vets, dog literature, and friends will warn you that you need to make a gradual dog food switch because puppies' tummies are very tender.  We stupidly went all out and mixed the old food with the new at a 50/50 ratio. 

Non-skid bowls so nothing gets pushed around

Later that day, poor Milton was terribly lethargic.  He was completely unexcited to play with us, only wanted to sleep for hours, and on our jaunts outdoors he would take one or two steps and then listlessly plop to the ground.  On returning inside, Milton vomited up the entire contents of his stomach onto our carpet.  It was actually only three neat, little piles, but still our carpet has had a total beat down since he arrived.  Outside his little bowel movements were pure liquid brown cascades.  On my tearful phone call to the veterinary emergency hot line, the veterinarian confirmed for me that the food switch was most likely what caused the gastrointestinal issues.  She informed me that the switch needs to be much more gradual beginning at a 25:75 ratio.  As I broke down on the phone and chastised myself as a stupid mother, Jeff and I were quite nervous that we killed our new, little goldendoodle.

Sometimes I try to entice Milton by making a food trail on the floor.

Other times he needs a little help.

Thankfully, our good friends, Alan and Alicia, loyal Costco members, came to a gallant rescue.  They rushed out and graciously bought us two big bags of Milton's routine food, only $15/bag, that very same day.  Jeff drove 1-hour round trip to their house to pick it up all for his new little son.  Milton is only 8-weeks old, but already he has a lot of wonderful people looking out for him. 

To make a long, unpleasant story short, Milton is on the mend.  He only vomited one more time and things are "hardening" up slowly but surely.  He is beginning to heartily eat again on a regular basis and is drinking more water which will help with any dehydration. 

I have learned that what puppy food brand you choose is extremely important.  Every day your puppy is greatly developing, so it is imperative to feed him the best food, so no progress is hindered.  The Costco Kirkland brand, that our breeder loves, has higher fat, bite-size pieces, and a crunch that keeps teeth clean.  Always read the ingredients on the dog food bag - grains, like corn or wheat, should not be the first ingredient listed, but rather a meat or vegetable.  Oftentimes these grains are substituted in as cheap fillers.  Our food's first ingredient is chicken and chicken meal; it is a bit fancy too containing cranberries and even rosemary extract!  It is better to pay a little extra for good dog food, than get socked with a high vet bill later on because you cheaped out.  Only the best for our goldendoodle from now on.

A little tip we read is to mix a tablespoon of pumpkin (pure canned pumpkin pie filling with no spices) in with his food once a day.  This works to quell indigestion and keep things regular.  A can of pumpkin can be a lot to use up, so you can always make muffins with the additional (comment if you want me to send you a tasty, healthy recipe) or freeze the excess in ice cube trays to pop out for later use. 

Just like Thanksgiving

We are feeding Milton 1/2 cup 3x daily because he is a growing boy.  We use a kitchen measuring cup to get it just right, so we are not under or over feeding him.  With potty training, we don't leave his water and food out all day, so that he is not constantly eating and needing to relieve himself.  We are making certain to clean his bowls nightly or whenever they look grimy, so no harmful bacteria creeps in.
Thankfully, our new dog, Milton, is still puttering along. He actually has a lot of bounce in his step which leads to more lively walks filled with lots of sniffing and a bit of unpleasant chewing around the house.  We almost miss the sleepy Milton.  All in all, this was only a minor catastrophe although the poor boy's Saturday night welcome party was canceled, but if the Goldendoodle of Honor is sick you really don't have much of a choice.

Happy boy

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Bloglovin - Join and read Goldilocks with your A.M. cup of coffee

Bloglovin is an amazing website that sends you a daily morning email with a list of all of your favorite blogs that have updated posts!  You simply go to Bloglovin, and add a blog's link that you want to follow.  This website greatly simplifies the daily checking of multiple blog sites that might have absolutely nothing new which is always a bummer. 

So, click on the below link if you want to receive a daily email that tells if Goldilocks and Her Doodle posted something new about Milton the goldendoodle!  If I were you, I would.

<a href="">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

On a side note, I joined Bloglovin about three months ago thanks to the advice of my very fashionable friend, Jaclyn, who has a fantastic Dallas street style blog:  Check it out!

The Name

I was attempting to keep our goldendoodle's name a secret in all of my opening posts.  I wanted to have a grand unveiling! Then I realized I mentioned it in the title of one post, so it might not be too much of a surprise.

Since we all have names, we know that a name is a permanent, life-long commitment.  As someone who refused to give up her maiden name, and now is about to hyphen last names to make a 17-letter concoction, I take names very, very seriously.  We can't just randomly select a name and then up and change it the next day.  Our poor dog will go crazy trying to figure out who he is.  As I tell my English students, people are going to judge you in this world whether it be on your looks, talent, or knowledge.  I don't think people should ever be judged on their looks, but your knowledge is fair game, so you'd better learn to write and speak correctly.  Likewise, a dog's name is very telling about what his owners expect of him.

Jeff and I settled on a name a good two years prior to the realistic purchase of our dog.  We didn't really buy into the whole cutesy dog name thing like Cupcake.  We wanted something a bit more mature and sophisticated.  I basically wanted an "old man name" as I have deemed it, like a Winston, Harold, or Walter.  See the below list if you need some ideas too:

To quote this site, "To qualify as a cool old man name, a name has to feel both classic and slightly moth-eaten, like the perfect vintage suit." Agreed.

What name did we settle on? Milton. That's right.  Milton. Why Milton you ask? Well, let's take a look at who our goldendoodle is truly named after.

Milton Friedman

This is famed Nobel Prize winning economist Milton Friedman, who was an outspoken advocate of free markets, and one of Jeff's "personal heroes."  He has many.  Will our Milton be quite as educated and astute?  I'll be happy if he's potty trained by the end of the summer.  He is wearing me out.

Milt on one of his many pottie excursions.

Notice the poodle long legs

Saturday, June 2, 2012

New Housemate

Our goldendoodle arrived yesterday, and he is quite adorable. I know all new "parents" say that, but he truly is!  He has been keeping us quite busy (as you can imagine) hence the late post today. 

Originally Jeff and I had grand plans to drive to Oklahoma last evening to pick the little guy up, but our breeder was driving down to Dallas to visit Costco to buy dog food in bulk. It seems absurd to drive two hours plus just for a Costco, but if you understand the multitude of puppies she has, it all makes sense.

Jeff met the breeder at 10A.M. in a nearby town and carted our guy back home. We borrowed a small crate for the trip because it can be rather dangerous to drive with your dog unsecured in the car, especially on the Texas highways. There are doggie seat belts, but we thought a crate might be more soothing for him.  He was not thrilled about the crate and cried for a good portion of the ride, but once Jeff started tapping the crate and talking to him, he perked up.

Proud papa

The delivery was not optimal because Jeff picked him up, dropped him home, and rushed back to work.  It was difficult to leave him after such a brief introduction, but that was just the way it had to be.

We have barricaded off a section of our apartment - kitchen to bathroom that will be his home whenever we are out. Jeff bought and cut Astro Turf to protect a small patch of our carpet, and he installed a baby gate.  We are trying our best to preserve the cleanliness of our home and of course apartment damage fees.

I arrived home by 4P.M. to be greeted by this big "Christmas" present in our kitchen!  I made my first mistake of saying hi to him for two - three minutes, rather than immediately take him out, and so he squatted and relieved himself on the AstroTurf.

Puppy proofing

Milton in the midst of things
Throughout the afternoon into evening, Milton pawed and sniffed around getting used to his new surroundings.  In total, he relieved himself four times on our carpet, but only very small patches that Out! PetCare quickly cleaned up in no time. As our dog literature tells us, we need to discipline him while he is in the act of doing something bad and never scold him after the fact. If we yell, "No," even one minute later, he has already forgotten what he did.  This is incredible to me, but that is the life of a dog's attention span.  So in each of these incidents, I immediately growled no, picked him up while chanting "Milton potties outside", and hurtled out the door to show him where he properly needs to go.  So far this has not been completely successful, but we are hopeful.

Poor lighting, but Milton looks sweet.
Milton and his dad

I think he'll fit in just fine