Remus was 8wks and 2 days old when we picked him up from the breeder. He seemed a little skinny and he had fleas, but he won my heart by heaving his tufted leggy body into my lap and passing out on the drive home. He whined a little when he woke up, consented to a belly rub, and then promptly fell back asleep. He was already over a foot tall at the shoulder and had no concept of where all his limbs were at any given time. I saved him from sliding head first off the backseat onto the floor multiple times. The breeder said he thought he’d be a wheaten, that is a red-blond, when he grew up. For now, his baby underfluff was a pale gold but the thin straggling overcoat was dark grey. He had a pale sploth on his chest and a dark mask over his nose and eyes. His ears were (and still are) huge. They lay flat against the back of his neck when he’s relaxed and they flop forward when he’s interested or excited. He was a skinny, fuzzy, awkward lump of cuteness, dwarfed by the giant kennel when we first brought him home.
We brought him home Saturday, gave him a flea bath before we took him inside and applied Advantix. I took him to the vet that Wed. When I had called the vet, the receptionist practically squealed in delight when I told her I had a wolfhound puppy. They had one other adult wolfhound in the practice, but no one had ever seen or worked with a puppy. An adult wolfhound was more than any of the other practices I had checked into could boast, and the enthusiasm of the staff on our arrival reassured me that I had chosen the best place. Remus was given cookies, toted around by the vet techs, and had his picture taken multiple times. Still a puppy at heart, the excitement wore him out by the time the exam was over and I had to fill out paperwork. After whining that he couldn’t get back on the padded bench in the lobby by himself, I picked him up and plopped him down where he stretched out in true limb splaying wolfhound fashion and passed out. I was nearly as tired as he was, having had to go to a training event at work early that morning and rushing home to get him to the vet on time. I finished the paperwork and woke up my sleepy puppy for the ride home.
He had the luxury of going straight back to sleep in his kennel, I tried to pick up the house a little and organize all his puppy papers.
Remus spends most of his days now sleeping, when he’s not sleeping he’s hyper, and then he goes back to sleeping. He sleeps 8-10hours a day, plus whatever he sleeps at night. The vet weighed him in at 11lbs 12ounces. In the past few days his eating amounts has increased by a quarter cup and his skinny body is finally filling out some. He’s always going to be lanky, but right now he’s all knees and elbows with floppy ears and a whiplike tail he chases until he falls over.
Falling is something Remus does constantly. With big paws and long legs, balance is something he hasn’t quite mastered. Whenever he’s playing, or even just running around, he invariably trips over something or knocks himself off balance side ways and lands with a thunk on the ground. He rolled head over heels down the small embankment behind our house chewing on his toy just the other day, much to the neighbors’ delight.
We’re trying to socialize Remus to the neighborhood kids, and when at the vet we let him sniff other dogs. Since he’s so young he hasn’t had his last round of Parvo shots or his rabies shot yet so we stay away from parks and PetsMart. He’s intimidated by pretty much everything, even though he’s already three times the size of the chihuahua who lives two doors down and half the size of the other dog. That’s one of the reasons I like wolfhounds though, they are the opposite of aggression (unless hunting), vastly preferring to take the path of least resistance. He’s as laid back as they come.
Except when he’s playing. His baby teeth are sharp and he thinks hands and feet are chew toys that move. We’re working on getting him to stop nipping us, offering a toy in place of our extremeties and letting him chew on that. His teeth don’t hurt all that bad now, but he’s getting bigger. He also loves to jump up on me when I sit down and lick my face. Thats ok when he’s still barely 12lbs, but if and when he hits 180, I can’t exactly have him jumping up on people-he’ll weigh 60lbs more than me.
Most important on our list of training is the infamous housebreaking. He’s doing ok, most of his accidents a result of us not realizing he can’t hold it anymore. He goes outside with enthusiasm and I’m pretty sure he’s realized that going inside is a no-no. He’ll sniff around and whine in between playing with his toys now and then I know it’s time he gets outside. I try to always take him outside after he wakes up because he usually needs to pee. We have a ramp on our backdeck steps because wolfhounds shouldn’t do stairs, especially when they’re young, because it puts too much strain on their forelegs and can cause joint problems and eventually arthritis. He’s mastered running up the ramp, but he tends to just slide down it because he can’t get traction on the wood. Brian’s getting traction strips to put on it. It’s cute to see Remus go sliding down till he tumbles off the bottom, but I doubt it’s really helping his joints.
Posts will get shorter after this one, and I hopefully will be including pictures soon. Remus has been with us for a week now, and is 9wks 3days old today, he’ll be 10wks on thursday. He’s growing so fast!