One Year With Baloo

Well guys, It’s been a year with our dog and we’ve managed to keep her alive. While I wouldn’t recommend getting a puppy and then moving three times, we managed to do it and I am so happy she came along with us.
Baloo is really a gem, and the kind of dog I pictured having with me in my young adult life. She is syrupy sweet, loves to run and play, but is also quiet and snuggles on her bed while we work or watch tv. I think different types of people require different types of dogs but man we feel like we one the lottery with her! It took me awhile to write this post, mostly because I just can’t fathom how a year has passed since we adopted her. Here is an update on how the last year has been for us, and for her!
To read the post I wrote from when we first got her, click here.
Highlights from the year? 
1. Taking Baloo to the Oregon Coast, the mountains, and the forest to experience different running/jumping/playing terrains. The forest is probably her favorite and our least favorite because she loves to drink in the mud puddles after it rains.
2. Hikes, Walks, Ball Throwing, and Runs. One truth to having a dog is that it gets you out of the house more often and it gives you a concrete reason to go outside. 
3. Meeting other dog owners, there are a few people I will really miss from the Corvallis dog park scene when we move to Portland. 
Trials from the year?
1. Baloo chewing on absolutely everything during her puppy phase including our wall, yikes. If you have a pup with a similar problem, this spray works wonders.
2. Baloo waking us up in the middle of the night to politely inform us that she had upchucked her entire breakfast, lunch, and dinner and that it had leaked out of her kennel and onto the floor. What a thrilling night that turned out to be.
Things our girl is great at:
Running, hopping, meeting other dogs, chewing only her toys (thank god!), snoozing, letting me know when the postman is at the door, going to and from her crate, waiting for her food. 
Things our girl could work on: 
Alert barking, leash pulling, being scared of the postman/tall friends with beards, sniffing strange cats, running at birds, drinking mud.
Some things that I have learned through a year of raising a puppy: 
1. Having other dogs and other people visit is critically important to the dog being well socialized. Baloo is really shy around people and still has a ways to go in this department, I can’t imagine what that would be like at this point if we hadn’t already started introducing her to a variety of people. With other dogs she is much less shy, but having the experience/ knowing her behavior lets us know when she is distressed around another dog and when she is the one thats bothering. It really helps at the dog park and I am glad we socialized her so early!
2. Puppies will chew, play, run, and destroy. Start with cheap supplies and make investments in your dog as they age into an adult. When we first went to the pet store in preparation for Baloo it was so tempting to get everything and anything adorable. I was really glad in the end that we went with “what would work” and now that she is an adult have better items for her. She chewed her bowls, bed, toys, and anything else she could find to aid in her teething. Go with the cheap things initially, and keep anything you value out of reach.
3. Crate training is amazing! If you do it efficiently your dog will view their crate as a den and voluntarily spend time there. Baloo loves hers, especially at night when she winds down.
4. Rescuing a dog was the way to go for us. I had black labs growing up so when we were discussing getting a dog my first inclination was to head to a lab breeder and pick a puppy. In the end Cameron convinced me that we could find a great puppy to rescue at the Humane Society, and it turned out to be the right path both for us and the dog we were saving. Baloo came from New Mexico as part of a second chance program here in Oregon and knowing her now I am so glad we opted for a rescue over shopping for a dog. I feel so guilty knowing I could have taken a home away from a dog by shopping for a specific breed. To read more about our individual adoption case, click here
Thinking of adopting a dog or cat? Here are some helpful links to find your new family member πŸ™‚

I linked a little video we made about life with her at the 6 month mark, and I have also linked some fun things you can shop that support HSUS in the process. 
We love our girl, and I can’t believe it’s been a whole year with her. If you have any helpful puppy tips feel free to leave them in the comments below for other readers considering a puppy. Every dog is completely different!
xo,
Natalie

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