We enrolled Saffi onto Stan Rawlinson’s puppy classes – they’re primarily run by his daughter Louise who is the owner of Paws n’ Claws, the day care company Saffi attends. The six week course is spread over weekly one-hour classes that are held in Hampton and there are ten puppies in our class – a vocal Cairn Terrier, a cute black Schnauzer, a fluffy Golden Retriever, a biddable blonde show-type Labrador, a lively black working Labrador, a mischievous Poodle/Bichon cross, two lovely Cocker Spaniels (one of which is named ‘Jarvis’!), a nervy wire haired Miniature Daschund and Saffi.
Saffi was rather excited during the first class and barked her head off, wanting to play with the other puppies. She not normally a particularly barky dog so we were a bit surprised and a wee bit embarrassed. At the end of the class the puppies were all let off the lead and allowed to meet and play together. Saffi seemed a bit unhappy about the way the Poodle/Bichon cross Buddy kept humping her. At this young age humping is more a sign of dominance than anything else.
This week Saffi was a lot calmer and we played pass the puppy which my Mum, Marcus and I loved! We were asked to ‘inspect’ each puppy’s ears, paws and mouth in order to get them used to being handled. Most of the puppies were really good but I had a secret eye on Saffi as she was passed around the circle, I know she hates being ‘manhandled’ in this way. This week we’re making a conscious effort to groom her more as she currently wiggles and ‘mouths’ like mad.
Homework at the end of the first class had been to practice the ‘sit’ command. Louise added an element of competition by telling us there would be a prize for the best puppy performance. Marcus and I are both very competitive by nature so practiced at every available opportunity.
And Saffi won! She did a brilliant ‘sit’ and stayed in position for five counts. We were very proud and I had to stop Marcus showing off the other tricks we’ve taught her – I don’t want to be known as the smug Cockapoo owners, especially if Saffi turns out to be a monkey in later weeks…
This week’s challenge is to get your puppy to ‘sit stay’ – watch this space!