Thursday, August 9, 2012

*YAAAAAAAWN* I'm on vacation.

Ok, so, that was uncalled for.  It's been a tiring week, what with the new dog drama and all.

I've done some writing, not much that was "new" though (and by "new" I mean newly written or rewritten for this draft).  Mostly, I've taken the feedback from my Alpha Readers and gone over some of the other points in the draft, tweaking a few things here and there, trying to make it a little less clunky.

I've just been, ahem, dogging it lately.  The feedback has been a great help though and tomorrow night I intend to get back into some of the "new" stuff.

I also spent a fair bit of time this afternoon digging through some of my research documents that I used to world build and looking on the Tubes to fill in some of the blanks.  Nothing that will be spelled out specifically in the book, but you have to have rules.

Dog/Real Life™ stuff after the jump!

For those of you who missed it, we have a new four-legged companion in our house, and I've taken the week off to try and train him into something resembling a dog.

Getting Prince into our home was pretty tricky, you see, he is a 1 year old shelter dog with some serious cat issues (which I've pointed out with our planned methods of resolution previously).  Due to those issues, the shelter wouldn't simply let us adopt him, so he's here on foster.  Essentially, our house is considered a "room" at Animal Services, that's geographically at a different location and just happens to contain the dog.

He's a good dog all in all.  He's about 27kg (~60lb) of bottled energy that doesn't seem to realize how big he is.  He's very friendly, and can be very very affectionate.  He's also adorable, intelligent, and a clown.

He has absolutely NO manners when it comes to people, their things, other dogs, cats, their hearing, or their olfactory senses.

At 1 year old, he's an adolescent.  Having been an adolescent male myself, I understand that there's a lot of posturing and acting tough involved, especially when you're scared out of your boots (not that I would put him in boots, but you get the point).  He's LOUD.

Prince barked at the cats incessantly when he saw, heard, or smelled them.  We've made some progress there, now he just goes bananas if he sees them within a certain distance.  The cats on the other hand seem to have no problem ensuring that he keeps his distance on the few occasions they've met.

He barks at people's automatic garage doors.

He barks at any other dog who doesn't simply stand still while he approaches head on (a no-no for dogs) and tries to sniff them from the wrong end to the right end.

We've made some good progress though.  He's reasonably decent to walk on a leash (solo or with our older dog), it's only taken a few days to reduce his "Don't mind me, I'm just going to rip your arm out of its socket by going this way" reflexes to a nominal level.  It all goes a bit to hell when the whole family is along though, he gets too bouncy and anxious.

I've got another week to try and settle things down and to see if we can sort out the cat issues and some of the craziness that ensues randomly on walks.  The cats were here first, and they are a key part of our family.  As much as I'd love to add this dog to our home permanently, I need to make sure that our existing family can continue existing safely and with some modicum of normalcy (without having to shuffle bodies between rooms securely all the time etc.).

Either way, at the end of the 2 week foster period, I intend for the dog to be the best possible dog I can shape him into, whether it's as part of our family, or in preparation to join someone else.

All quirks and issues aside, I do find myself loving the damnable beast.


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