So mango’s been here just over two weeks. it already feels like its been much, much longer.
Noa picked her up at the milan airport, as we had arranged for the breeders to meet her there. we actually delayed the pick up time by a week, as we had to postpone the flight the day before the original date due to some issues with the israeli dog import authority. we had to have a piece of paper that shows her clean bill of health and rabies shot stamped by a vet, but we found out after submitting it it had to be a government vet, not any vet. so they rejected our import license. so the following week our breeder went to get the other stamp on the paper too. anyways, stressful week for everyone involved as again we didn’t know if we would be able to fly until that morning, when we took the new stamp to the airport for them to approve, which they did. phew.
so noa flew with an empty crate, spent a fun day in milan, and the following evening met up with mango for the first time. since we had met mango as a puppy, she of course remembered noa’s smell, which I’m sure helped calm her bit. noa went to check in, there was some fun discussions with the manager about if we could fly with mango or not, as they knew we got rejected the previous week, and finally they allowed it and noa was set to go. of course she was the rockstar at the airport as everyone knew her as the girl with the cute puppy dog.
I went to go pick them up at 4:30am from ben gurion airport, with both of them exhausted. we got home and mango happily sniffed all about. the good thing was we had the whole day to bond, so that come evening time going to bed would not be as hard, right? wrong! mango came from a family of 23 adult dogs, and she was with 3 of her litter mates until she left! we opted for crate training, and she yelped and cried so much, that noa brought a mattress down and slept outside of her crate that first night. her presence helped calm mango down and she mostly made it through the night. (since then we have learned your supposed to start with the crate in your bedroom, and move it further every day away from you till its where you want it). the second night i had to go to her once to calm her, and the third day we had taken her to the beach so she couldn’t even thing about being awake during the night. we still have some complaints going to bed, but by this point, we pretty much put her to bed around 11, and she sleeps till 7 no problem, not making a sound. it helps that we try to walk her as much as we can to tire her out.
walking in the village has been an interesting thing to see. starting out i would take her to as many different ways as i could, but i think that was a mistake. she needs to be comfortable with her surroundings, and she for sure wasn’t. plus in the village there are a lot of dogs roaming around, and ones locked up behind fences. so almost every path we took had a dog barking at her, which would scare her. (2 weeks later we walk right by them usually now). but our first walks were more of a sitting session. i would walk 10m, and then she would sit. look behind her. look in front of her, behind again. and then continue. if there was a loud dog, lay down, and don’t move. i think i was focusing on the idea of walking around with her too much, instead i should of turned around and went in the opposite direction. but we were literally hemmed in by dogs everywhere. we are now at the point were she won’t sit as much, which is great. walks are getting a little longer. its starting to be summer here though also, so we have to go early in the morning or dusk for it to be cooler. she’s not so interested in going on a walk during the heat of the day.
too much energy and teething/chewing has been a challenge. we now have a plethora of stuffed animals, and chew treats. pigs ears, hoofs, sticks, long chew, short chew, everything. its mostly in the evenings she wants to romp around a bit, and focuses on chewing on us. so we are trying our best to redirect to toys first, and if all else fails, one of her chew things. we think all her adult teeth are in, and the chewing is becoming less in the evenings.(ice cubes are a good solution too(thanks jeff))
Dinner time to start was funny with her. she eats 3x a day still, same food as what she got at the breeder, a grain free italian dog food. it seems really good for her, but we are going to mix some with grain in her diet after this bag is almost done, to get her used to other foods too. as she came from a litter of 7, when i would put her food down, she would suck that food right in. now she knows theres no competition from litter mates and she eats much slower. i also started off having her sit before i feed her, instead of lunging for the food. and now we are working on stay, and you don’t get to eat till i say okay. after 2 days its already working. (though stay is still a foreign concept to her)
The first week I did much of the walking, so I’m the defacto pack leader at the moment. noa calls her my shadow. noa started taking her on more walks with and without me, and is competing with me as pack leader status. mango for sure prefers when we are both around, but we need to work on letting her be comfortable with just one of us around. speaking of which separation anxiety is a huge issue, since we are around all the time. so we are making an effort to have her be in her cage for a few hours a day with us not in the room. this is much tougher for little puppy….. she likes having her pack around her. we still are working on this.
as for ginger, were still working on them. mango loves that ginger drops food around her cage. but she’s still a little snappy at her when she’s too excited. but they are getting more comfortable around each other. this is for sure a work in progress.
okay, some pictures!!!!
our first day together
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on our walk ,making sure theres no one following us
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first day at the beach
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happy with mom
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i tell you, the dog beaches here are amazing…. theres dogs there all day long, and its a nice long span of beach. you always meet nice people and their dogs, and its such good exercise.
zonked out after a tough day
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i like my chew toys
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and playing in the water some more
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we are settling into a happy routine now. i like going on all the walks, its great. once true summer hits it won’t be as fun (wake up earlier to beat the heat). but she’s behaving well (as much as can be expected for a puppy) and we love taking her out on the streets in tel aviv and eating out with her. dogs are allowed almost everywhere here. sorry for the puppy load of pictures, but i had to get these out there.
as always, lots more to see on flickr.