Freyja, 14-15 Weeks Old

Freyja at 15 weeks

Freyja is 15 weeks old now, and she is doing great. We took her to the vet this morning for vaccines and she weighs 30 lbs. She’s had lots of good experiences in the past few weeks, and is growing fast and learning faster. We are definitely going to have to get her into some agility classes when she’s old enough: She loves playing on jungle gyms, going down slides, across bridges, through tunnels; she is attracted to stairs like a magnet, and is a champ going up and down stairs of all sizes and shapes and types. Jeremy’s also been working with her on going up and down short ramps and walking on top of low walls like the ones all around campus that get used as benches. We’re taking it slow, though, because we don’t want to damage her joints, so no jumping or sustained running, as far as we can manage.

Ears up
Ears up again

Freyja has also started playing with us outside, which is a blessing, because she is getting too big to roughhouse with in our small rooms. She loves playing Frisbee, which right now consists of us tossing the Frisbee to each other, and Freyja running back and forth between us trying to grab it. It took her a while to get the hang of it, but she is starting to improve: She didn’t catch anything the first day, knocked a bunch out of the air and actually caught one the next day, and now she catches it at least five or six times every session. I was very impressed, especially since the weather has heated up and temps over 75F don’t seem to agree with her, poor furry puppy.

Ears down
Right ear down again

We’ve been doing lots of training, and she is doing quite well. She’s getting quite reliable with sit; she knows down, but often needs a clear hand signal (thumping the floor) to do it. She is very familiar with no, off, out, leave it, and drop it, especially since she is tall enough now to see on top of many of our piling surfaces. (Yes, we’re pack-rats, and we tend to build up piles of stuff on all flat surfaces in our house. Freyja is doing her darndest to break us of that bad habit, and it’s starting to work.) We’ve been familiarizing her with directional commands also—left, right, straight, go around—and she is starting to get the hang of those too. Yesterday she was a big help when we were playing Frisbee in the backyard and Jeremy tossed it way back under our back porch or in the weeds on the side of the house; we pointed and guided her with directional commands, and she was able to fetch it and bring it back to us.

We’ve had some good experiences with other dogs as well. Freyja has several good buddies that she always wants to visit when we walk through the neighborhood: There’s Spike the Jack Russell, Bingo the terrier mix, Macho the basset hound, Kipper the yellow lab, the happy huskies (that’s what I call them since I don’t know their names), a friendly black mix that lives with two unfriendly Dachschunds, and now Layla the mastiff. We finally met Layla on an evening walk a few nights ago, having seen her inside her house and spoken with her owners. That night Layla was out in the yard with one of her owners, visiting with another (teeny tiny fluffy) dog named Mandy, who was not thrilled with the company. Layla and Freyja hit it off right away, although Freyja was just a little wary of the huge mastiff’s play solicitations. They ran all around the yard (Freyja managed to wrap her leash around everybody; Jeremy had his hands full) and had a good time. When we get a car, I think it will be really fun to take her to the dog park and let her interact more with other dogs, not to mention getting her into group classes.

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