Ready for baby mini-series: When it’s go-time!

We know we must be getting pretty close to our new two-legged puppy’s arrival date now because this whole week we didn’t get a single new dog-related toy or piece of clothing for it — can you imagine? Mama must think that our future two-legger has enough stuff by now. We sure hope she’s right!

Lately we’ve been practicing more of the same pre-puppy basics, like impulse control, smelling baby smells and listening to baby noises, and a little bit of riding in the car with the puppy-carrier. But most of this week’s activities have been behind-the-scenes. And by behind-the-scenes we mean that we have been working on our own projects (like eating frozen stuffed bones) while mama piddles around on her computer, generating lists and charts.

bonesHere’s a little confession: until this week, we thought that a stork was going to bring our two-legged puppy, and the four of us people and dogs would get to just sit around the house all cozy-like waiting for it to arrive. But this week, we learned that mama and dad are actually going to go somewhere to retrieve the miniature human. They’re going to walk out our door and not come back for probably two days — and we can’t go with them! This got us very worried.

Naturally, though, mama has a plan. And once she told it to us, we were not quite so worried anymore. First, she made arrangements for our grandma and the Turkeyman to stay at the house with us while they are gone, so that we have somebody to sneak us onto the forbidden couch give us pettings, let us out to potty, and feed us turkey kibble. Sure grandma and the Turkeyman are not the same as mama and dad, but they’ll do just fine — as you can see, we get along a-okay.

Chickerdoodle-120623-1-2We also have arrangements for some of our very good neighbor-friends (a few of mama’s fellow dog trainers) to come take us on walking adventures while our people are away. We are pretty good boys and are not too hard to care for, but mama feels better with us going out into the world in the over-capable hands of professionals than our grand-peoples, who will be plenty busy taking care of mama and dad. We aren’t sure exactly how many people are going to be taking us on adventures, but judging from the big stack of spare keys mama had made the other day, we suspect we’re going to be quite busy!

We’ve stocked up on kibbles, wet foods, and made sure we have plenty of our daily meds to last us while they’re gone, and mama has created a big typist’s instructionable that explains who eats what and when, how to give us our meds, the rules about furniture, toys, games, and treats, and all kinds of et ceteras. The instructionable is all printed out and ready, so that whenever it’s go-time, mama and dad don’t have to worry about explaining our routines to anybody. Everything will be there!

We realize, of course, that not every dog whose people are going to get a new two-legged puppy is lucky enough to have live-in replacements while their people are gone. Some dogs have to go to doggie camp, which is what mama originally planned for us to do. If we had done that, we would have prepared a little differently. We would have packed our bags with our foods, meds, leashes, and beds, and left them someplace easy to grab when Go-Time comes. Mama would have called ahead to our camp and made sure they already had all the info ahead of time on what we eat, our meds, etc, and arranged payment. And finally, she would have appointed a designated driver to take us there at Go-Time. Lots of friends have volunteered to help with dog duty while our people are away, so it wouldn’t have been hard to find somebody to be our personal limo driver for our camp adventure!


Finally, mama has stocked our freezer with mountains and mountains of frosty yummables — stuffed kongs, bones, and ice cube puzzles. These will be handy while our grand-people are staying with us so they have something to offer when we’re giving them the “I’m bored, please give me an activity” stare, and they’ll also be critical when mama and dad and the puppy return home and they’re a little more tired and busy than usual. We’ve never been disappointed with yummable entertainments, so we sure aren’t complaining!


Now it’s just time to wait — the easiest part for us dogs, and the hardest part for those humans.

Next week is our final “Ready for Baby” post! We’ll be talking about resources to learn more, from training classes to websites to books. Hope you’ll join us!

To catch up on the rest of our series, check out the following links:

Out and About

**If you are experiencing behavioral concerns with your dog, please seek out an experienced, reputable trainer in your area. In Austin, we sing the high praises of theCanine Center for Training and Behavior, where Chick and Doodlebug learn and play. For more info on picking a quality trainer in your area, see this post.**

17 responses

  1. You boys are lucky that your mama is so well-organized and has thought of everything ahead of time. And that you have so many other humans in your lives who wnat to help out! Thank you for sharing this adventure with us!

  2. I’m loving your getting ready for baby series. My husband and I are expecting in September, so this has given us ideas of things to think about with our own pup. Thank you!

  3. Eek — we’re getting excited for your new adventure, boys!

    Also, could you elaborate on your ice cube puzzles? I have a feeling they are right up Edi’s alley.

    You guys are sooo lucky to have such knowledgable parents that are preparing you so well. Thanks for sharing all the details!!

    • Sure! We do two different ice cube puzzles. The first goes like this: we mix kibble, broth or fish juice, and water, then pour into ice cube trays. Freeze, pop out into zip lock bags, and save in the freezer for a quick kong snack. When it’s time for a snack, squoosh one or two cubes into a kong and offer to dog. This works best if the cubes have to really be jammed in to fit in the kong, as it takes the dogs a while to lick all the yumminess out of them.

      The second: we make a similar concoction in a large tupperware (2-4 cups capacity at least). It might include broth, the juice from a can of tuna, a few treats, some chopped veggies, whatever. Sometimes we put bigger treats in there too, like a bully stick or a frozen stuffed bone or a stuffed kong. Cover with water, freeze until solid (this can take a full day!), and offer to dog outside on a hot day. Depending on the complexity, this sometimes takes an hour or more to get through.


  4. Im so excited for all of you guys! NEW PUPPIES ARE GREAT NO MATTER HOW MANY LEGS THEY HAVE!!!! Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

  5. Can you explain the “frozen stuffed bones?” I’m assuming that you don’t mean Kongs, but I’m just curious since I’m always looking for new treats for my girls!

    • Hi Kate, We take hollow beef marrow bones and stuff them with canned dog food, then freeze. It’s an awesome snack, and super easy! You can get sterile bones at any pet store, usually filled with some kind of nasty “cheese” or “peanut butter” filling. Remove that filling, run the bone through the dishwasher, and you have yourself a cheap and easy puzzle toy! Best, Aleks

  6. Pingback: Ready for Baby Mini-Series: Resources « Love and a Six-Foot Leash

  7. Pingback: Dogs and baby – the secret to success « Love and a Six-Foot Leash

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