Category Archives: Getting an OwyheeStar Puppy
I just want to thank you both again for bringing this little boy (“Bear”) into my life. He had a rough time in his first few weeks of life, and it was questionable if he would pull through. But he is a survivor and is definitely making up for lost time.We are having a great time bonding and getting to know each other. He is super smart and has already learned to retrieve to my hand (amazing!). He is such a fast learner. I’m impressed. We have many more things to learn together.You both do a great job and I am thankful for your gift.
This pup is the little boy who gave us so much concern. A round of antibiotics and he bounced back with no sign of an issue. He has such a great personality. Not every pup gets off to the perfect start. No Breeder wants to talk about mortality rates. Places like AKC publish those statistics. We secretly are thankful our numbers are below average. Nonetheless, no one can avoid every problem. It is impossible.
We are happy that you folks wanted ‘Bear’ even knowing full well about his early challenges. We are blessed indeed to meet some of the planet’s best humans. Thank you, for loving this boy so much.
~ February 28, 2018
Just had to send you a quick update on how our girl is doing. She is so wonderful! Of course, the puppy stage is extra busy but she is doing so well with house training (only one accident!) and getting used to her crate. Last night she actually slept all night in her crate next to our bed without any whining and woke up so happy.She certainly has a big personality and she has bonded very well with us so far. She follows me around all day and I just love it (velcro dog :)). It was really cute on the long drive home because she just wanted to be in the back of the car with the kids. They absolutely adore her! I think I told you that my oldest son cried tears of joy for about an hour after we picked her up. He said he just loves her so much already and it is a dream come true. I remember getting our Weimaraner as a kid when I was six and the instant love that I felt for her.Anyway, thank you again for a fabulous experience and all your work in getting her prepared for the transition. It’s clear that she had an introduction to house training and being in the crate and you’ve made our job easier!Thanks, Haley
Freedom is Earned
Here is the thing —once a behavior (good or bad) starts it can soon become a habit. This type of thing can happen quickly like too! The Weim can become an incessant barking machine. I swear they can bark at a cloud. Maybe it looks like a bird. To prevent that and other unwanted behaviors a person just has to be vigilant early on and probably for a number of years.
The Weimaraner can remain juvenile-like for three years with teenage flakiness surfacing from time to time. I laugh at people who want this breed and expect them to be easy to manage and hope to get them trained in the first six months. They are not that kind of dog. At the same time, some experience extraordinary success. Their puppy is super intelligent, and their style of follow-through nets the desired outcome. Nevertheless, behavior issues loom large on the horizon.
A lot can and should be accomplished in the first year; however, you cannot achieve whatever and rest on your laurels so to speak. While the adult can seem like the perfect all around dog, it is a bit deceptive. This same dog can freak-out due to separation anxiety and eat the siding off your house. Left alone, they might dig a hole (in fifteen minutes) large enough to park a Jeep underground. Or, you might enter a room or arrive home to find the sofa arm forever gone.
Cliff and I never fail to mention that the breed is characterized by various quirks and quandaries. Nonetheless, for many nothing else but the Weimaraner will do. Many people who give so much to their clients (those working in the medical, criminal, or legal fields in particular) receive a type of therapeutic love from the Weimaraner. All that considered, my mantra is Freedom is earned. Giving a new puppy too much room, or forgetting to make sure they are able to maintain when you are out of the house (or just the room) can prove costly on so many levels.
More about our Adventure
~ Part ThreeUps and Downs
We had some trouble early on with puppy biting. When I tried to correct Loki he would get angry, which worried me. I’ve since used your advice, Shela—a good screech stops him in his tracks! Since then, I’ve screeched and redirected him to something he’s allowed to chew on, and I haven’t had many issues this past week. I’m keeping Cliff’s trick in reserve in case we have more serious difficulties in the future, but for now, we’re on a good, positive track. Though Loki did well with the crate the first couple of weeks, he’s become more vocal this past week and I’ve temporarily revoked his office privileges (his crate is now in an area where his complaints won’t bother anyone). I imagine his increasing energy levels have something to do with it, so I’m making sure he gets more exercise, and he still gets some nice breaks from his crate throughout the day. I’m hoping this is just a phase, and that he learns that fussing won’t get him out of his crate (I’m also doing work to make sure that his crate is a positive place for him—he just objects to not being the center of attention, I think!).
We had a nice visit with the vet for Loki’s 9-week shot. She was impressed with the detailed portfolio you sent and is supportive of the vaccine protocol. She is also happy that I’m feeding the Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Chow with the NuVet supplement. Good news—one of Loki’s testes has descended, and the other was in a good position, so I think we’re going to be just fine on that account. She is also an advocate of neutering closer to the 6-month mark rather than to wait longer.
Loki and I are getting along quite nicely. He’s already my little adventure buddy, and he’s always up for snuggle time at the end of the day. I love this little guy—he is so intelligent and energetic. Though I wrote a fair amount about training, to Loki it’s all fun and games, and I intend to keep it that way. Thank you for all your help in selecting Loki. We’ll be sure to keep you updated!
Click Here for Part One
Click Here for Part Two
Thanks, Erica, for providing so much information about your process and Loki. The photos were outstanding, too! We look forward to hearing from you in the future. Keep up the great work.
The Trip Home
~Part One–Our Beginning
It’s been an eventful few weeks; however, Loki and I had a fairly uneventful trip back home. We stopped by Walla Walla on the way to see my family, who fell in love with Loki—I wasn’t sure they were going to let us leave!
There were a few housebreaking accidents the first week… but I’ve learned pretty quickly. So has Loki. He goes to work with me every day and has the office under his spell. He is curious and friendly with strangers, and though he is quiet in new situations, he comes out of his shell once he’s had a chance to take it all in.
We are so happy to hear from Erica. She sent us a lengthy update which we will break into three parts. We appreciate her detailed explanation of the experience thus far. There is more at stake with Loki–as he is hopefully going to become a part of the Search and Rescue (SAR) team with Erica. This pup is her first to train for SAR, so there is a lot to consider. Nothing but the best combined with attention to every detail– at the same time she keeps calm and collected. This approach will get the desired result.
Finally, let’s all remember raising your first pup is a growth experience. Well–raising the Weimaraner is always a growth experience. They require you to dig deep and to get ahead of the stuff that comes with as well as to avoid being reactive. (OMG) Well, anyone who has been down this path knows that there are surprises. Some are welcome and others not so much. More than anything, the Weimaraner needs to bond and develop the desire to want to please you. Of course, that doesn’t mean they do not have to obey and achieve specific necessary skills. There are those who became so enamored with their intelligent and engaging pup that in the excitement they forgot this is a journey for the Weimaraner and their human. Respect is a two-way street. We cannot wait to see what Loki and Erica achieve together. It is not a race with a time limit. It is a journey to see what they (Erica and Loki) can accomplish as partners.
Hello from Bremerton, Washington!
Freyja here just checking in. My big brother Odin has a toy I want that he won’t share so I’m up on the couch with mom pouting…lol.Human speaking now: Freyja is such a joy! She’s adjusted to our little family rather quickly, she has great energy and is very smart & sweet-natured.
Odin gets along very well with Freyja, he’s happy he has a friend! He is her playmate and protector always wants to be near her. He is almost kind of taken a parent roll, making sure we are doing our job!. He goes outside with her and shows her where to go potty, even though she is on a long leash if he feels she is going in the wrong direction he just gently guides her with his paw where he thinks she needs to go…lol.Freyja has really bonded to both Odin and me. Our little family feels complete with her here. Of course, we are running on fumes sometimes as Freyja is quite busy doing her puppy things. She is teething so she bites everything. I keep a toy with me always for a distraction as well as protection…lol. Feeding time is a challenge as she wants to eat out of her brother’s food bowl instead of her own..lol. Today she gets to go see the puppy doctor to get her next round of shots. Big brother gets to go too, he’s just gonna love that!…lol. killing two birds with one stone works for us though. Anyway, I could go on and on…thank you, Shela & Cliff, for all of your help and support and of course for our Freyja!! You guys have helped make this such a positive experience and we sincerely appreciate all that you do! Have a wonderful day! Jeremy, Jessica, Odin & Freyja💗💗PS: Just got back from the vets, she now weighs 18.2 pounds. The doctor and staff are in agreement with the shot protocol. She fell asleep during the exam she was so calm!!
~ Boise to Las Vegas Flight
Julia Speaks of Boise, etc.
Libbie did perfect the whole day! Oh my goodness, I can’t believe how well she did!! I took her potty right after you guys left then we hung out in an empty area for a while to play, bond and work off some energy. I put her in the carrier, and that’s where she stayed until we got home. She didn’t put up a fuss, she was relaxed and slept most of the day and flight home, even thru rough turbulence.
Las Vegas Arrival
Scott picked us up at the airport, and she was continued napping for the 15-minute ride home. Once we got home, we went straight to the backyard to potty, ringing the potty bells as we went out the door. She instantly went potty as soon as she got off the patio, both pee and poop. She was praised and given treats, and then we went in for some food, water and family bonding time. Scott is in love with her too! There was no doubt that, our family is complete again :)!
Busy Day; Fun Evening!
We had lots of playtime and several potty breaks, each time she rang the bell to go out! I can’t believe it! At first, we thought it was coincidental because it could be a great play toy, but she went potty every time, except once, when I think she just wanted to go outside to play. Did you by chance train her with the potty bells? If not, we have one super intelligent puppy :)! I seriously cannot believe how fast she took to that!!
Our First Night
We did our usual bedtime routine and put her in the crate in our bedroom. She pitched a little fit for about 5 minutes and then went to sleep. She woke up around 2:30 and again around 3, whined a couple of minutes then she went back to sleep. I had made my decision before bed that if she woke up after 3:30 I would take her our potty. She woke up at 4, I went to the bathroom and then took her out of the crate, rang the potty bells and as soon as her feet touched the ground, she went potty. We went back to bed, she whined for less than a minute and went back to sleep. It couldn’t have been a better 1st night!!!
Breeder Comment (part two)
Julia, you and Scott, did everything right. Libbie is a lucky girl. No, she was not trained to the potty bells nor even to the door. It would not matter if she were because it was all new territory. We have countless stories (from past experiences) where we had pups housebroken and crate-trained only to hear that their new family was disappointed. Well, there is a trick to doing things, and while it involves follow through, it also takes a bit of knack. It requires the humans to go about business unfazed and matter-of-fact. The moment we humans hesitate the pup reads our hesitation and follows suit.
Libbie is a super smart girl–like her Mama. Ringing the bells upon arrival set the stage. For those that wonder–, you don’t want to ring them like a wild person and make it a scary thing. You want to entice them to want to use them. It is a fun thing. Shortly, it might be abandoned because the pup learns to ring them all too well. (ha!) Who can say? It facilitates the housebreaking process –that is the goal.
Libbie can hold potty for a while. As you saw on your trip home, she didn’t potty the travel bag. When she woke up, she needed to relieve herself. All too many folks are too quick to take their pup out in the middle of the night. Soon, the puppy wants to go every hour or two all night long. For some folks, this pattern continues for months. The concrete-thinking Weimaraner who gets the idea that they go out at night can make life tough for the exhausted puppy family. Habits form readily–good ones and unfortunately, bad ones too!
Getting off to a good start and avoiding the unwanted behaviors is the best approach. We talk a lot about getting the basics done. It cannot be overstated. We hope all of Libbie’s littermates are excelling.
In our Arms, and in our Hearts!
All is going well with sweet Zoe! She wanted to be held the whole ride home and has ever since been attached. The first night in the crate was rough, but last night showed a lot of improvement. She’s quickly learning where to do her business and has only had a couple of accidents in the house. She’s eating well & showing good signs of playful activity! We played fetch for about 15 min last night (retrieved every time!) and then she passed out! She’s so intelligent! She’s at home today with the grandparents who are as equally in love as I am. She is happy and adjusting very nicely!
I think the hardest thing is they bond with you and feel they will forever be in your arms from that moment—unless they bound out to do their own thing. Ha ha, Then we darned humans leave them in the crate. Ha
Thank you for all the communication and very easy process! Yes, she is a smart cookie……thank you, Courtney
Dear Courtney–you are correct. It is the most difficult thing to juggle the bonding and the crate-training. Both are necessary components. If the Weimaraner could choose, they would crawl under your skin next to your heart and make it home. They kind of do that, but it absolutely must be balanced with learning how to be away from you. If not, then bad things happen. These various negative occurrences frequently involve destructive behaviors due to the feeling of being abandoned. The Weimaraner is prone to separation anxiety, and it is so darned easy for us to make it worse. Our good intentions often take us from likely to suffer separation anxiety to a severe case. You are doing the right thing. Ultimately, this will help her learn to adapt and become a better-balanced Weimaraner adult. Of course, that is always our goal.
It is so difficult to remember that our good intentions often lead to behavior issues. Before you go with what seems right, it is always a good idea to ask yourself if this is what is best for the Weimaraner. Friends, family, and even some trainers are quick to offer ideas that might not prove beneficial for the long haul. Keep on the path Courtney. You and Zoe are off to a great start. We could not be happier!
Our Friend Jan
If you live near Jan Magnuson, I hope you can take advantage of her All-Breed Training. She has had the Weimaraner 45+ years, and therefore, she knows a thing or two about the breed. Here are a couple of ways you can learn more about Jan and get in touch with her.
Yesterday we learned about Ohren’s help in the kitchen–you remember the photo of her helping pre-wash the dishes, right? If not-this her pictured above.
Her sister in Portland (Schatzi) also is a whiz at helping with the dishes. Jeff writes–
The kids are excited to have another dishwasher in the house!! Plus she slept through the night last night so that is a bonus with no pee in the crate. We are rolling now!!
Growing Like A Weed
Ohren is beautiful and a little troublemaker.
We love her so much and are so thankful to you for providing us with this little monster.
She’s growing like a weed! I hope others like seeing our new addition. I love seeing everyone’s furbabies!!!!
We are delighted to learn how things are going. It means a lot to us to have this update. Thank you! We know our readers will also enjoy it. One can only bring home so many Weimaraner puppies in a lifetime. Living vicariously through other’s experience is fun.