Sekiu (CQ): was added to our family, September 3rd, 2017. We had to put our beloved Apollo down due to hip dysplasia as he could no longer stand nor go up and down the stairs. He was a wonderful dog but we never wanted him to suffer. He lived 13 years, 2 months which is a good ripe old age for a German Shepherd (GSD). We will always remember and miss him as a great friend and companion.
Sekiu is an 8 week old female GSD with markings a lot like Apollo. She will be smaller and is expected to weigh about 70 lbs when fully grown. She was part of a litter that was raised by the same people that nurtured Apollo, 13+ years earlier. Her Sire is only a year old and the Damm is 2 years. Sekiu has no relation to Apollo's linage.
We've began training immediately with priority towards potty training and introducing her to Suva, our Siamese cat. Suva is more cautious but Sekiu will go right up to the cat, nose to nose. Both sleep indoors, un-separated, but we watch them closely for signs of a flairup which do happen from time to time. Suva is quite the hunter and will often spend the night outdoors. All the neighbors love him because he controls their mole population.
Whinning at bedtime was a problem at first but Marsha slept with her downstairs for the first few nights. We learned sleeping in her crate was calming as she felt protected. Anyway, we set up the crate in our bedroom near the bed and Marsha could get better rest. Familiar toys, blankets, and squeaky toys all helped.
She has her first shots but we're cautious having her mix with other dogs until she has full resistance built up. She had play time with a friends dog but we know she is free of viruses.She's now approaching 10 weeks of age and sleeping through the night so we don't have to get up for potty breaks every 2-3 hours. She loves her kennel area which is 1300 sq-ft and bound by a 6 foot cyclone fence we installed last year. She now weighs 18 lbs and sleeps through the night at about 7 hours.
We had a ham radio event recently of which we helped with communications in a rough mountainous section near Lake Crescent. Of course we took her along and was the "star" at the party afterward and she got her first exposure to big water at this beautiful lake. She didn't go all the way in but she certainly got wet. Next time we'll see if she jumps in, totally.
Additional training is underway and she has already accomplished; sit, down, come, and we are working on stay. Those are a little more challenging for a puppy her age.
Oct. 22. 2017: Sekiu is now 3 1/2 months old with an estimated weight of 28 lbs. Needless to say she has an appetite that won't quit. She has a very different personality from Apollo who was raised from a puppy as well. He had a much milder temperament, easy to potty train, and got along with our Siamese cat very well. That's OK, we need something to shake up our life once in a while.
It took longer for her to be reliably potty trained but goes through the night in fine form now. We've been working on her "hyper" state of mind, particularly when she gets up in the morning. She has so much energy to release that I don't think she even thinks about what she's doing. She still has some "biting" drive which comes across as a "greeting" to others when they approach her. Its not an aggressive bite but one that can and does cause bleeding when you're on drugs like Warfarin. Marsha does not have any wounds but I do. Cesar Millan points out that the dog must be in a calm and submissive state before you can get their attention so act like the dogs mother and how she would handle it; ---showing whose in charge. Its working. I've found that feeding her with treats that are given at ground level after the "down" command calms her and allows me to pet her as shes eating the treat and afterward. Most dogs like their belly and paws rubbed which helps put them in a submissive state. No one likes love bites and we're working to remove this trait from her social interaction. As an adult, we'd like Sekiu to become a therapy dog which means defensive traits need to be eliminated or minimized.
Marsha walks her several times a day to burn excess energy as well as leash training. The neighbors love seeing her and comment how well behaved Sekiu has become working on the "heel" command and "sit" as cars come by on our country roads. We've not taken her to the dogpark yet because she has to finish her shot series which will occur later this week. I'd like to socialize her with other dogs as she hasn't received much exposure yet.
We're not interested in breeding her so will be spaying as soon
as her development allows for a safe operation; probably in
December. I'm told that this will calm her as well and
remove an accidental encounter at the park. She continues to enjoy
her large kennel and shelter. She can spend hours there and
not have separation anxiety which is important to us when we want
to get away for a few hours or even overnight.
We've noted she'll make a good watchdog. Whenever she hears a noise outdoors you can bet she let it be known that she's onto it. She carry's traits of law enforcement canines more than Apollo.
We love her shinny black coat. Her left ear still flops over so we sometimes call her "dufus". She needs more time to grow which may take till 6 months of age before it stands erect
Nov. 23, 2017: Our
Thanksgiving visit to Ryan & Jenn's family in Oregon allowed
us to bring Sekiu along and she got to socialize with Bo and
Buddy, their two Beagles. She was about one week shy of 5
months and has two fully erect ears now.
She traveled well on the 6 hour trip but we made a biological stop along the way so she had no accidents.
She's still hyper active and loves to chase Suva but he's tough and won't let her get the best of him. We see signs that she's starting to slow down in the dog-cat chase... I guess that's maturity coming to pass. Her biting has diminished as well. She gets lots of feedback that that's not proper behavior. Recently, she's learned that jumping on the bed is fun. She occasionally jumps on people but its being corrected. Lately, we've been having fun playing "catch". She seems a natural and we really didn't have to train her....she just took to it.
About another month we'll have her fixed and start a "doggie good citizen" class.
Dec 6, 2017: She now weighs 43 lbs. She'll be a big girl. New estimate on adult weight is 75-80 lbs. She is still teething.