Wednesday, January 28, 2009

More Fun

Here is Pilot and his sister Dash (wearing a red collar) playing with a stick. It's so hard to tell who is who...most of the time it just looks like a big black blob!

Please excuse the distraction at the end of the video. What can I say, I'm just a sucker for a big, cute golden face! :)

Puppies in the Park

Even though it is only Wednesday, Pilot has been a lucky pup, and visited the off leash parks twice already! But it gets better... he also gets to play with his two sisters! On Monday we met Dash and Sierra at Terwillegar Offleash park. Today, we had another play date at Callingwood Offleash park. There is a ravine that goes through the middle of it, and they had a great time running up and down the big hill. This is a great way for the puppies to socialize with a number of different dogs, plus practice their recall.

Mel with Sierra

Charis, with a very tired out Dash


Another Distraction

On Tuesday we went to Walmart to pick up a few things. On our way out, I noticed the plastic life sized guide dog sitting by the door! I was pretty sure Pilot would think it was real. I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to see how he reacts to seeing another dog in public! Here's a video of how he handled it. I think he did quite well!

Good boy, Pilot!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The park has gone to the dogs

Every Friday Monica comes into the Dogs with Wings office and gives the dogs the best treat they could possibly ask for...a long run at the off leash park! Last week I got the chance to go with her as a co-walker. We took 7 dogs and traipsed around for an hour and a half, while they ran and played and sniffed to their hearts content! They never seem to run out of energy, and the cold certainly didn't bother them! As you can see, they found a huge stick and had a great time playing tug of war.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Puppy Class!

Last Thursday, Pilot participated in his first puppy class at West Edmonton Mall! Also there were his siblings, Dash and Gunner. The Flight Litter has had a couple of classes together at Waggin' Tails, but I knew going to the mall would be a whole different experience for him.

I've learnt from experience to be prepared for every situation. When you have a young pup, and you're doing class in public, anything can happen! They can get very excited, they can start barking, or have an accident, or pull wildly on the leash, or develop a fear of some new object or sound etc...

This whole list was running through the back of my mind as we approached Sears in West Ed. Little did I know, I didn't have a thing to worry about! Pilot did very well, and he even tolerated walking with the halti on for the very first time. For the most part he was calm and focused, and even though I could tell he wanted to say hi to his siblings, he responded to "watch me" incredibly well! (I did take advantage of his love for anything edible by filling my pouch with some kind of stinky lamb treatsies.)

By the end of the class, I was extremely proud of him! The last two dogs we raised were a lot different than Pilot, so I'm still getting used to his laidback, easy going personality. Hopefully it carries over into this weeks puppy class!

Of course, we mustn't forget about Eddy, who is being trained as an autism service dog! He came along with Maria to be an excellent example to the puppies.

He just loves to wag his tail!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Bath #3

It never ceases to amaze us, how much Pilot loves to have a bath. He brought his little squeaky elephant toy with him this time. Even though the water was fairly deep, he didn't mind laying right down and relaxing....what a funny pup!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

He likes to play cards!

One night we were playing a game, and Pilot was sitting on the floor, looking up at me with these huge, sad puppy dog eyes. Of course I couldn't resist them! I told him he would be too big to fit on my lap, but he didn't mind. He sat there, half falling off, just watching everything we did. He didn't even try to lick or bite the cards!

Playing with Caper

At the Mall

Earlier in January Pilot wasn't too familiar with West Ed. He also wasn't too familiar with the term, "loose leash walking". After walking around for about 45 minutes, he settled down a bit, and we tried some basic obedience.

Here is his famous frog-leg down position! Maria thinks he might be related to Ebony...

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Watching the Game

During my little brother's hockey games, Pilot is usually snoring on the floor. In the gold medal game however, Pilot sat up and watched the puck go back and forth intently! He looked so cute from the side.
Can you spot the puppy in amongst the shoes and coats?! Most people didn't even realize he was there!

Making Friends

Pilot loves kids, and was very happy to pose with my little cousin, Tieja, for a picture on Christmas Day!

A Car Ride

Bentley and Pilot riding in the car after visiting the Scott Robertson Elementary School.

"Leave It"

Labs are known for their love of food, so we're teaching him to be patient, and sit nice while we get his supper ready. He automatically sits now, as soon as he hears the crunchies falling into his dish!

Christmas Shopping

A week before Christmas, Pilot braved West Edmonton Mall with us while we did some last minute shopping! He did excellent, except for being a bit timid of the water fountains.

We carried him onto the escalator, and then set him down. He walked off all by himself like a very good puppy!

At this point, we had only been in the mall for about 45 minutes, but already his short little legs were getting tired! I came across this coin operated race car, and decided to set him inside! He surprised me by totally relaxing inside, just sitting there like he had done it a million times before! :) I couldn't resist a picture.

This was one of the last stores we visited. As you can tell, he is bushed! Pilot has this talent of falling fast asleep in minutes. In the matter of about 10-15 minutes, he was sound asleep on the floor. I felt so bad, having to wake him up, and he needed quite a bit of encouragement to start walking!

Hugging his Cheetah

Dogs with Wings Christmas Party

For the second year in a row, I got the opportunity to help plan a christmas party for all of our volunteers and the dogs in training! We played games, let the dogs play with each other, and had an appetizer potluck for the people. Maria even made a "Biscuit Bar" for the dogs where they could choose a yummy treat in exchange for a sit, down, or stay! It was a lot of fun, and thanks again to all of the volunteers for their hard work, and for contributing to our potluck!

And of course, it wouldn't be Christmas without a stocking for each of the dogs...or in this case a goodie bag! Here is Pilot and Silver showing how good they are at "leave it". Those little bags are filled with all sorts of treats and yummy things to chew on and even a little toy!

(Please excuse the big, long white nose in all the pictures...Silver likes to help!)

Jet, Pilot's brother at the party.

Playing in the Tub

Here's a short video of Pilot playing in the tub.

He's a Water Dog!

One night, Pilot scrambled voluntarily into the bathtub, while the water was running! He just had to get closer to that fascinating drain and the water gurgling around it.

Then he discovered the most amusing game of all... we would put the plug in, and he would scratch at it with his paws until it came out. We would put it back in, and he would go crazy trying to get it out again!

Most of the puppies we've raised have tolerated the bathtub, but still haven't felt too comfortable standing on the slippery surface. Pilot, on the other hand, had no problems slipping and sliding around in there, even rolling around in the water on his back sometimes!

Almost just as funny as the puppy himself, was the crowd he attracted! Including his four-legged roommate, Silver, who couldn't figure out what was going on!!

Here is Pilot in his crate, but really wanting to be on the outside!

You always know when he is very relaxed!!

Looking a Little Guilty...

Early in December, Pilot was still in the middle of being house trained. It was going well, as long as you kept your eyes on him all the time!
This particular evening, we got a bit distracted, and all of a sudden we were all asking where the puppy had got to. He was sitting as still and quiet as a mouse in the dark entryway. I actually walked past him before I realized that there was a black blob sitting there! After I turned on the light, I saw the little wet spot on the mat. So that's why he was being careful not to draw too much attention to himself! :)
Since then, he's proved to be a very fast learner, and is almost 100% house trained!