Thursday, October 21, 2010

First Day at Training!

    Today started early, with Tristen telling me "Wake up Mommy, let's go get Dante!" After a wonderful breakfast at the hotel (ham, egg & cheese burritos, hash browns, bacon, and fruit cocktail) we took off for 4 Paws. I was proud of myself for not getting lost, lol, after all I haven't been here for over two years and Nathan did all the driving last time. 
    The training center is just as awesome as I remembered. We went in and the kids made a beeline for the play area. A few minutes later Jennifer, one of the trainers, brought Dante over to meet Tristen. And that's when the first meltdown happened. Honestly, I think that he was just overstimulated already, and the excitement of finally meeting "his Dante" was just too much for him to handle. It was a bad meltdown too, he was really lashing out at me (it's always aimed at me), kicking and scratching. I took him outside and we called Daddy to help calm him down. After a little bit we were ready to go back inside.
    Jennifer and I decided that it would be better to take Tristen and Dante outside to the fenced in play area so they could get to know each other a little better while having plenty of room to move around (plus we could take Dante off the leash, which Tristen was determined that HE was going to hold- yeah, tiny little dog, not gonna happen...). So we went outside and played ball with Dante for a little while before going back inside.
    I think the time outside did Tristen a lot of good too; he was a lot calmer when we went back in, and played with the toys while I worked with Dante on basic commands. I had quite a bit to go over, seeing as training actually started two days ago. It will take me a day or two, but I think we'll catch up with the rest of the class soon enough. We worked on sit, down, place, heel, and under as well as one of the behavior disruption commands- touch. Dante is an absolutely brilliant little dog, and he quickly realized that he was supposed to listen to me. One of the other trainers took me outside to work with us a bit on corrections and heeling; it's definitely a lot different working with a tiny dog like Dante than it is a huge dog like Ajax! I wanted to make sure that I was correcting him properly; I was so afraid of hurting the little guy accidentally!
    I was glad that training ended when it did. Tristen was getting a bit overwhelmed again (there were several wheelchairs and a couple of walkers, and my guy is obsessed with wheels), and it seemed like Dante was too. I think he was happy to get back to the hotel, away from all the hustle and bustle.
    He and Tristen spent a little time relaxing on the sofa 

And then I put him in the crate while we had dinner. That's when Tristen had meltdown #2. Dante needed a break, and Tristen just didn't want to give it to him. But I was determined to give Dante a little down time and we finally got everyone calmed down (Yeah, I was getting a bit worked up too, we were all tired, overwhelmed, and stressed out).
    The trainers told me that Dante really likes balls, so I bought him one this evening. It's red (Tristen's favorite color) and has a little bell in it. He absolutely loves it, and I had Tristen rolling it for him. They had so much fun playing with the ball! I really think that it will help them bond with each other. But then Dante got so excited that he started barking and I couldn't get him to stop! I finally had to take the ball and put it up because between Dante barking and Tristen laughing, it was getting way too loud in here!
    Dante still isn't too sure about being close to Tristen without me right there with him. I can't say I blame him, Tristen is a lot bigger than him and when he moves fast it startles Dante. They just need time to get to know each other better; I know the bond will come eventually. It just takes time and work. So when bedtime came, I went and laid down with Tristen, because he wanted Dante to lay down with him. 
    Now he's asleep

And I'm going to go take a long warm bath :) 

1 comment:

  1. Prayers for you all! I can't believe it has been two years since we were there getting Stitch. We brought him home on Halloween day! Love the pictures. Say hi to the gang at 4Paws! Is Jeremy still there? If so, please email me with his number.... Thanks. Get some rest if possible! ((HUGS))