Stella Petronella and we are thoroughly settled in, I'd say. Obviously over time it will all evolve, but we're all pretty comfy and we have our routines in place! (Good thing, cause we're about to start travelling with her a LOT!)
But, there is one thing that we are still really really working hard on, and that's walking on a leash. She's bigger and heavier than Chuck was, about 5 kilos more and is seriously strong. When she wants to she pulls like a monster. Truly, it's like having a rope around a horse. My back does not love this. It goes out from time to time, and I try hard to do all sorts of exercises and sleep right etc etc etc to avoid it springing out on me, but Her Stella-ness if she's in a real mood, can do it to me. So, she absolutely must learn to walk well on a leash.
My sister in law came to visit and as I've said before gave us the miracle tools to teach this to Stella, now it is mostly persistence, and she has come a million miles and can walk for quite long periods of time with the leash actually loose, no tension at all. This is my goal for 100% of the time.
We're not there yet.
This morning was pretty horrible. NOTHING like when we got her and she pulled like an absolute train All. The. Time, but still, she was towing me around. The biggest difficulty was that it was Saturday morning, everyone was out walking their dogs and she wanted to go into town rather than over to the off leash park in the next town.
Now, she is seriously fascinated by other dogs and wants to watch them, smell them and go up to every single one of them. So every time we see a dog, or cat, she starts to pull. We're working on this, but it's a battle. I may get her to sit instead, but eventually she needs to learn to not drag us over towards whatever she sees.
By the time we got back from our walk this morning, we were both a little grim around the edges, it had been a trying time. This afternoon went soooooo much better!!!!! So much better. We went into town even and it wasn't tooooo bad! Not so many dogs out, which definitely helped. Over Xmas the kids will have to be equally consistent with her, I'll have to show them how, cause she simple has got to learn this, or I can't walk her.
Tomorrow? We're going to the off leash park. No questions asked. She's off leash for 90% of a three hour walk, and we need a little joy after the hassle of today.
It's all learning, but sometimes learning is more fun that others.