Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Update on Guinness

Mom here. Guinness being the second child, he doesn't get all the attention he deserves, so here's a post just about him.

Food & Health - Guinness is very healthy and allergy free! He was 30 lbs when he first came to us 3 months ago and within 2 weeks he lost 4 lbs when we took him to the vet for his wellness checkup. Soon, he went back to 29lbs and has been at a steady weight since. He gets 1.25 cups of food a day. He's my chunky monkey. When he first came, he must have been so nervous and scared that he would snatch treats from my fingers. It would really hurt because he grazed his teeth across my fingers. He has big cheeks so he has to make sure the food is all the way in his mouth otherwise he'd drop it. Now he's very gentle about taking treats from my fingers. Guinness has no food allergies. Yay! However he has a sensitive stomach and has lots of stinky gas and drippy poo. We switched him from fish & sweet potato kibble over to dehydrated raw (fish) food. His poo is not as drippy and he gases less throughout the day.

Tricks & Obedience - Guinness has completed his obedience course and earned his Bachelor of Arfs! In addition, we taught him "BANG!" to roll over and play dead. We saw it on an episode of Cesar Millan and thought it would be really fun to teach him. It only took him 5 minutes to figure it out!

Behavior - Guinness loves people. He has no problem in a crowd and loves the attention. However, we did learn that although he's good with dogs, he's guarding me and my husband when we're around those dogs. If the dog poses absolutely no threat, he's unfazed. If the dog is even remotely interested in me or if it's a big dog, he gets protective. He will try to split us up. He will chase the other dog away by running against the other dogs' side or he'll stare the other dog down. We make sure that Guinness and the other dog sniff while on leash before allowing them to play freely.

Overall, Guinness has been a joy! He's so sweet and so handsome. He's so well trained. My husband calls him his buddy. They really have bonded. Since he's so easy to train, we're going to enroll him in Agility at Wonder Dogs. He has a long body and is very agile so we think he will do very well. Having two dogs isn't easy. We don't get to spend as much time with Guinness as we would like and really concentrate on him, but we're trying our best. He loves walks and we take to the local little league games to get him used to the sounds and commotion with all the lights, screaming kids, bright colors and people. He seems to enjoy it but also gets overwhelmed - he falls asleep as soon as we get home. We took him to our friend's house who has cats. In his bio on FBRN, it says he doesn't care for cats but is okay with them. My friend's cats are as large as him. he met them and just like his bio said, he ignores them. How funny!

Being a little brother - Being a little brother isn't easy is it? I find little scabs on Guinness all the time. He and Basil play every night, but Basil tries to get his loving jabs in there. He and Basil sleep together and play together now. It's so sweet. Basil likes to sleep in Guinness' bed and Guinn sleeps in Basil's bed. Go figure! For a while, Basil was hoarding the toys and bones from Guinness. We took the toys away. We left 3 bones out. After 3-4 weeks, they no longer "fight" over bones. Guinness hides his in his bed. Basil will steal it out of his bed, but either way, they each still have a bone and all seems well now. Recently, I took out 2 toys. 1 is Basil's frisbee and 1 toy stuffie (it was the only thing I had that was new) and gave it to Guinness. Basil tried to take it. I put it away a couple of times and took it back out. This week, I took the stuffie and frisbee out again. I gave it back to Guinness. Basil tried to take it but Guinness ran away and turned his back to Basil. They played tug o war a couple of times. The amazing thing is that now Basil doesn't bother with it and hasn't chewed it apart! That's the longest in frenchie history I think!

Guinness has a couple of play dates lined up with other dog friends. We hope this structured play with help him through his anxiety about losing his family and guarding us.

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