Thursday, April 7, 2016

An Update on Lucy at 7 Months

I know the big question everyone probably has is . . .

Is Lucy getting better?

And the answer is  . . .


You read that right - NO! She is NOT getting better.

She's digging up the yard.  Her latest find was an old drain pipe up next to the house.  David removed part of it, reburied it, covered it with dirt and sprinkled it with dog repellent.  So far she hasn't dug it back up.

She's created a tunnel in the busy next to the fence.  She runs the fence with the neighbor dog and the bush was in her way.  This is her solution to the problem.  We don't really mind this.

She's flattened the plants around another bush.  She likes to lay in this bush and chew on stuff.

I can't keep her off the couch.  I've tried blocking her path but she still found a way.  I've tried putting furniture on the furniture but she went around it.  I tried the aluminum foil trick but she tried to eat it.  

She eats everything that doesn't eat her first.  This particular casualty was the phone book.  She grabbed it off the top of the book shelves.

She's not completely potty trained although she only has a few accidents a week.  If she's unleashed, she's in trouble. Seriously.  When she's loose, I can't get anything done because I have to spend all my time getting things away from her.  

It's going to get better, right???


  1. I can tell you what worked for me as far as keeping my dog off the couch. We went to a carpet store and bought about 4 feet of plastic runner. The top part is smooth, but the bottom part has little feet that go down into the carpet. Well, we took this and laid it upside down on the couch whenever we weren't home....the little feet poke up and don't hurt her, but it's not at all comfortable for them to lay on. This did the trick for us, and it didn't take long at all. When we weren't using it, we rolled it up and tucked it in a corner or behind the couch. Good luck!

    1. That could work. I'll have to look for something like that. I'm so sick of the couch battle. She doesn't do it with my husband - just me!

  2. Patty, from all that you've described, it sounds like Lucy is bored. Her breed is a VERY active one with a distinct job bred into her. Without adequate, structured exercise with leash training and discipline every day, and without a job to do, she is going to continue in this destructive mode. Also the fact that she is not fully house trained indicates that her training may not have been consistent. I'm afraid things aren't going to get better until it is made crystal clear who the pack leader in the home is. She is not respecting you as a must not be commanding that respect. Lucy does not seem suited to be a house dog. It seems she needs to be trained to hunt, or to do obstacle/agility courses. She needs a job. She is a retriever and a water dog so regular opportunities to swim will help too. I'm afraid her misbehaviors will most likely get worse if they are allowed to continue without appropriate redirection and/or correction. You might want to look into an outdoor pen, or some professional training. A digging and destructive dog is generally a bored dog. Her breed remains in puppy mode too for a couple years, maybe more. I walk my English Springer Spaniels EVERY morning at least 2 miles (rain or shine) with training collars and firm corrections if they pull. We review training commands (sit, down, stay, come, etc.) EVERY day several times during the day. I also play a rigorous game of "ball" hitting a tennis ball with a racquet until they are exhausted. They are in their crates a lot when in the house, and always when I or my husband cannot be present and engaged with them. It is a demanding commitment having sporting breeds. I hope things will improve because she is a beautiful dog.

  3. Cats mellow out with a bit with age, I'm thinking dogs do as well? Really, since I'm a cat person, I have no advice but did want to say she is truly a beautiful dog!

  4. Gretchen is right. Lucy is a working dog with nothing to do so she destroys everything she sees, A less sporting dog with less energy seems better suited to your level of activity. It's a bit unfair to impose limitations for which she was not bred.