Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Daily Improving

with 4 comments

Our new dog, Asher, is making great strides in learning the routines and commands we are trying to teach him. Keeping him off our bed is not 100% yet, but he is overcoming the urge to jump up more than he is giving in to it. One thing that helps clarify this rule is that neither Cyndie nor I hesitate to correct him. He definitely understands we don’t want him up on the bed, but he just can’t help himself from trying when his desire reaches irrepressible levels.

Yesterday, we successfully navigated two walks without ever tethering him with a leash. He pushed the limits of our comfort a couple of times by trotting off the path despite our commands to keep him close, but the excursions were short-lived and he did run back to us when we amped up our excitement about having him return.

That was very rewarding, especially when comparing the anxiety over the possibility of him dissing us entirely and disappearing. On the third walk of the day, he lost the off-leash privilege by ignoring our calls to return for far too long and heading a worrisome distance off our property into the neighboring woods. The leash is more for our peace of mind than punishment to him.

I don’t know if he perceives it that way or not.

We also had good success playing with him in the backyard while unleashed. He loves retrieving felt squeaky balls.



Big puppy energy in the house gets a little unnerving but outside on the back hill, he tires relatively quickly and his zoomies soon become walking after balls that we toss for him. That’s the point we are confident in the likelihood of him napping for a while after we get inside.

With Asher learning more every day, we are feeling very optimistic about how well he will eventually fit in with us to become the loyal and well-behaved dog we want him to be, for both our sakes.



Written by johnwhays

May 15, 2023 at 6:00 am

4 Responses

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  1. Good to see that you are training him to be off-leash. It broke my heart to see Miss D confined to the tether. Dogs should roam free! Particularly, in the wide-open spaces you have. How is he around the horses?


    May 15, 2023 at 3:52 pm

    • We are thrilled over the prospect of allowing him general freedom. Asher is a little skittish about the big beasts so far and for the time being, we are limiting close interaction between them. We expect that to normalize in time and hope they end up getting along famously.


      May 15, 2023 at 6:52 pm

  2. I’m so happy to read this! He’s such a sweet dog. ❤️


    May 15, 2023 at 8:53 am

    • He’s definitely sweet on you! Today Asher regressed a little after yesterday’s progress. Not unlike raising kids…


      May 15, 2023 at 6:50 pm

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