Last month, I officially became a Paw-rent to a little toy poodle named Chewie (named after Chewbacca from Star Wars!). Even though I’ve always had dogs in my life, this is the first time I am solely responsible for my own - and it’s really different (in a good way). I even took 1 day off from work to make sure she settled in well!
Here’s the recap of my first month with her (incase you’re thinking about becoming a paw-rent):
1) Say Goodbye to uninterrupted sleep, for at least awhile. Did I mention that I have a new alarm clock? For the first week, I was part zombie, averaging 4 hours of sleep per night. Every time she whined at night, I would worry whether she’d have peed or pooped in her crate. By 7am, she’d be whining for food, so I’d get up to feed her and to let her do her business.
2) It’s incredibly exhausting - your attention is divided ALL. THE. TIME. During the day, I had to make sure she was eating well, training her to go potty at the right places, making sure she wasn’t chewing any furniture. The only time time I had to myself was when she was sleeping. Not kidding, this could be a full time job.
3) Educating the new way: Positive Reinforcement
When I was younger, the method of training dogs was through fear and domination, making sure dogs knew who the ‘alpha’ in the relationship was. Choke chains, electric collars and smacking were common.
However, the emphasis now is to learn to communicate better with your dog through paw-sitive (hehe) reinforcement. So far. I’m learning loads from a YouTuber called Zac George
on how to train Chewie - and it’s working! Every time she gets something right, she gets a reward! I’ve definitely learnt to become more patient, but what matters is that she’s a happy dog :)
4) Becoming a Paw-rent
Being constantly worried about your little one, doing research on what the best kibble snacks, buying the best harnesses and toys, making sure your little one is mentally stimulated and physically exercised… that’s become a norm. Yes, my phone’s photo album is also filled with multiple pages of photos and videos of Chewie. I’ve also made both a TikTok
account for her, so do give her a follow!
In a nutshell, it’s been exhausting but incredibly fulfilling. When I look at her, there’s this inexplicable joy that arises in my heart - and I literally would do anything for her!
I would like to add that I have SO much respect for parents, especially working parents. It’s also reaffirmed my decision not to have kids - as I can imagine, it must be at least 100 times challenging and exhausting for them.
You can see photos of her below on the Photos of The Week Section :)
Till next week!