Everyday Adventures in Havachon Heaven

The Good, Crazy, & Adorable Life of One Havachon Puppy

Respecting the Dreaded Pot Lid – A Havachon Tale of Obedience

I had mentioned a while back that our vet suggested we use a whistle to help train Daisy through her more stubborn areas of obedience training. We kept forgetting to buy one, so we started using a pot lid and spoon instead. The idea was to make a sudden, sharp noise that would get her attention and stop her from doing whatever naughty behavior she was doing; then, once we had her attention, we could give her the command and praise her for obeying.

The pot lid and spoon worked like a charm, and we haven’t had to use it for quite a while. Until now.

Daisy’s going through a jumping phase, which I know will become a permanent part of her behavior if we don’t stop it now. Could be puppyish enthusiasm, but it’s probably just part of her exuberant nature;

See? I DO know how to behave when I want to! 🙂

either way, it has to stop. I can’t even count how many homes I’ve gone into where the family dog jumps all over everyone – and this is kind of scary when the dogs are BIG. Then you sit down and they continue to jump, either onto your lap or just in an annoying way where they claw at your arm and side.

Like the Dog Whisperers and Dog Listeners and all the other dog experts say, this can be a sign of dominance and/or anxiety (neither of which is good for the dog), but for humans, it can be just plain annoying when it’s not encouraged by the recipient of all that attention. It can also be damaging to clothing and, if the dog’s nails aren’t clipped, it can leave you with some pretty nasty welts and/or scrapes. Not to mention shedding dog hair!

Daisy jumps on us repeatedly like a bouncing super-ball when we walk into the room; she jumps a foot into the air and against the glass doors when she sees a squirrel or chipmunk outside. And she jumps against the baby gate when someone’s on the other side who she wants to greet, eventually causing the gate to fall with the potential to hurt herself. Her jumping is out of control, and her frenzied state makes her incapable of caring about our commands to stop, let alone even hearing us!

So out came the pot lid again. And once again, it’s working like a charm.

She HATES this thing.

I don’t even have to clang it with the spoon anymore – all I do is take it out – she immediately hears that tiny little metallic sound when I pick it up. She jolts to attention, freezes in place, eyes wide, and then backs off with her eyes fastened on the lid. Since I have her full attention, I give her the NO JUMP command over and over, and then praise her for listening.

It works so fast that after using it a few times in one day, I only had to walk toward it, put my hand on it, and she snaps to attention. Yesterday morning she started her usual jumping and shrieking routine as DD prepared to leave for work, and the minute she saw me pick up the lid, she backed right off and calmed down. I put the lid down and continued to give her the “No jump” and “Quiet” commands, and she stayed quiet and calm. DD took a couple more minutes to leave, which should have thrown Daisy into a frenzy, but it didn’t. She stayed. After DD left, I gave her a treat and praised her more.

Half an hour later, her squirrel buddy started teasing her again. She started her maniac jumping at the glass door, but this time she listened to my “No jump” command without my even having to go near the pot lid.

Today was even better. When DD was getting ready to leave, Daisy started her frantic jumping. I looked at her warningly and just happened to catch her eye – she looked at me, stopped mid-jump, and backed off, quieting down immediately. She stood still and just wagged her tail at DD. After DD left and I praised her, she proudly trotted toward her biscuits and received her prize.

You gotta love good home remedies! 🙂

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Our Havachon Has Our Genes!

They say that adopted children many times take on the traits and looks of their adoptive parents. We think this is true of adopted puppies as well. 😉

 


I will SO do it if I want to!!

 

Before DD was born, we knew two things about her: she’d have curly hair, and she’d have a stubborn streak. Both traits run heavily through both of our families.

She did – on both counts.

Well, Daisy’s no different. She had long, puffy, straight hair when we got her, and it’s now curly, curly, curly! And she definitely has that stubborn streak that surfaces any time she wants to have things her way. It’s a funny process, actually – she’ll do something that’s not allowed, and when we tell her “no” the first time, she just stands there staring at us with this funny little expression on her face, like she’s really thinking about it and contemplating why we wouldn’t allow that.

She eventually returns to the scene of the crime and does it again. But this time, she’s ready for us. When we say “no”, she yaps back at us. One quick, complaining little yap, along with a little hop that puts her body sideways to us, ready to bolt away in case we try to pick her up and put her in the naughty room (which is the laundry room; this only happens when she does something really bad, though) for a couple of minutes.

But she’s ready for anything – if we follow her yap with another “no”, she lets out a shrill yap and starts racing around the room like a lunatic, letting out little grumbles and under-her-breath barks. Just like a teenager who’s been sent to her room and mumbles under her breath the entire time she’s stomping away.

But that stubbornness is there – like with the sofa-jumping episode, she’ll walk over to whatever it is she’s not supposed to touch and look at it, look at us, then look back at it, deciding if she can get away with it again. Stubborn.

If she commits the crime a third time, she looks at us sideways and is ready to bolt. She yaps as if to say, “Look! I did it again! Aren’t you going to  scold me?” This time, we tell her “no”, then just ignore her, and usually the bad behavior stops. I guess it’s just no fun anymore if no one is going to pay any attention to it.

But those aren’t the only coincidences. DD had one baby tooth that just refused to fall out on its own. Her adult tooth was trying to push its way in and ended up starting to emerge through the side of her gum, next to the baby tooth. We had to have the baby tooth pulled. Well, wouldn’t you know that Daisy has two baby teeth – her upper canines – that are rock solid and sitting right up against the adult canines that already came in? Now the vet has to pull them during her spay surgery.

So, Daisy is one puppy who is truly one of the family, all the way down to her genetics, it seems! 🙂

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Havachon Personality Traits

We couldn’t find any information about Havachons anywhere, so we looked up info on Havanese and Bichon personality traits, figuring Daisy would probably be a mixture of both. And she certainly is, and then some. Since there isn’t any good Havachon info online, we thought we’d post some so you aren’t facing the same blank wall we were.

If you’re thinking of getting a Havachon, here are the traits we’ve noticed in Daisy:

1. SMART. Maybe too smart. Loves to outsmart humans and figure things out.

2. Stubborn. Unless and until a Havachon recognizes you as her leader, she’ll do things her way over and over again until she has YOU trained.

3. Willful. It’s her way or the highway, baby. She’ll pursue areas that are off-limits until she finds a way to go there, then she’ll flash you a “see-it’s-mine-now” look.  That is, until you teach her who’s Alpha.

4. Loving. Oh, so loving! Havachons become little puddles of mush in your arms, with their soft doe-eyes, frantically wagging tails, and kisses galore!

5. Shy. In certain circumstances, like taking them somewhere new, they can be a bit leery and want to take things slowly at first. But once they trust you, they’ll look to you for guidance and listen when you tell them everything’s okay.

6. Playful! Very playful! They tend to play pretty hard, which is surprising for such a tiny dog. They play like they’re 50 pounds bigger than they are. And their sharp teeth go through everything, from Kongs to Nylabones. Our Shepherd-Husky-Collie mix didn’t shred toys like these little guys do!

7. Cuddly. They just LOVE being held, cuddled, and sleeping in your lap.

8. Happy. Definitely happy!

9. Friendly. We were told that Havachons were shy about meeting new people, but we haven’t seen any examples of that. Daisy is always very happy and excited to meet new people and new dogs.

10. Ham. LOVES to have her picture taken. She’ll actually freeze in place when she sees the camera pointed at her and wait until she hears the “click” before she continues whatever she was doing.

11. Curious. They’ll check every nook and cranny a hundred times just to see what there is to see. Very thorough.

This is definitely a wonderful new mix that I’d recommend to anyone who has the energy to get through the puppy period!

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