Hello and welcome to my blog! Today I wanted to give a highlight to my adorable 14 week old Pembroke Welsh Corgi named Ace. My husband and I introduced this sweet puppy to our family when he was 10 weeks old and have overcome many obstacles including thunder, hookworms, training, meeting new dogs, meeting new people, and getting to know our first born son, an orange tabby cat named Leo. Here is a short summary of the first 4 weeks and how Ace has integrated into our home and gained a permanent place in our hearts <3
Week 1 - Age: 10 Weeks Old
Ace came in as a happy ball of pure joy! He has a very expressive face and is not afraid to give a little side eye. I slept on the kitchen floor next to him the first night as we introduced crate training. We also wanted him to feel welcomed and to bond with our family. The first 30 minutes of Ace entering our home my cat attacked him. This is something that I had a hard time finding any information about online, but my “sweet” Leo started out with a sniff and immediately followed it with hissing, biting, and aggressive chasing. Poor Ace hid under our ottoman. This showed us that Leo was not ready so we kept him in our guest bedroom/bathroom area (it is rather large and has always been “his” room) while Ace adjusts.
Due to this, Ace was under a lot of stress and started vomiting a lot, as well as refusing to eat. I stayed up with him until past midnight when he finally ate and fell asleep. The next morning I was not feeling well so I stayed home to both get better and to help Ace adjust. All morning he was great; we played, we trained, and we really bonded. Unfortunately, by mid-afternoon Ace was vomiting again, all of his stool was runny, and he’d stopped eating. I called the vet and they had my husband and I rush him in to get a parvovirus exam.
Ace *thankfully* was parvo-free, but did have some hookworms and generally bad bacteria. They put him on an antibiotic, a probiotic, and a new food to help him heal. Adam and I kept working on crate training, play time, and started feeding Ace and Leo at the same time on opposite sides of Leo’s bedroom door. As the week went on Ace continued vomiting up the antibiotic almost every other time he was given it and the runny stool continued. On Saturday morning, there was blood in his stool and he vomited twice, so I full-on panicked. I called our vet, the emergency vet hospital nearby, and really anyone I could to get some advice. The emergency hospital said they believed it could still be the parvovirus and wanted us to come in with a ton of additional weekend fees. We were so grateful that one of the veterinarians at our regular office offered to come in that afternoon to see Ace and re-run the parvovirus exam. He came back negative, but the hookworms were still very prominent. Worms can cause blood in stool and for him to feel lethargic so they stepped up the antibiotic and the regulated food. We also changed how we gave him the food, and thus concluded a very stressful week 1.
Week 2 - Age: 11 Weeks Old
Week 2 was the light at the end of the tunnel for us. Ace started feeling noticeably better, he was still sleeping 6 hours through the night, and Leo had finally come around. After using tips on slow introduction Ace and Leo had become fast friends within a week and a half, and now play together regularly. The medicine seemed to be working for Ace and we started working on introducing him to new noises, sounds, people, terrain, and other things recommended to desensitize puppies.
For starters, we took Ace to work with us one afternoon to meet the office. They adored him and he behaved very well! He didn’t jump on people but also showed them attention, he also seemed less snippy than he sometimes gets when playing at home. We took him on longer walks during this week to walk on many different areas, as well as tried a whole mess of ideas to introduce him to the world! Here is a file of what we did:
Lastly, Ace was introduced to a new feline friend this week. A very skittish cat named Little Man was introduced when we visited a friend’s house one evening and Ace responded very well. He allowed Little Man to smell him and then went about his business, almost ignoring the cat completely. One thing to keep in mind - most puppies, but (whether due to breed or personality) my puppy chews on EVERYTHING. Nothing is off limits in his world from the leg of the coffee table to our living room rug, and even as far as the cat’s mice toys. This has been a big focus with training through re-directing attention and encouraging chewing on specific toys/treats. I’m hoping if we keep working on it he’ll move out of this phase, but has probably been the most trying part of raising a new pup.
Week 3 - Age: 12 Weeks Old
Ace is having a blast this week! He still has hookworms so a new medication was needed, but we had an appointment for 12 week shots so we knocked out two birds with one stone. We also really stepped up our training, shout out to Zak George and all of his tips and tricks! His new series about training his own puppy has helped us immensely. It really aided with Ace’s first bath as well as his first large event. Adam and I have a dream of helping Ace become a therapy dog that can join OSU’s Pete’s Pet Posse and help students on our campus, so taking him to the Welcome Week event Library Lawn Party was a perfect practice/exposure night. I went with two friends and we walked him around the outside of the library where Ace probably meet over 100 people that wanted to stop by and pet him. He did wonderfully! He seemed to really enjoy it but also stayed rather calm.
Week 4 - Age: 13 Weeks Old
This has been an incredible and almost entirely potty accident free week! The only kicker - Ace has stopped sleeping through the night as well and now wakes up for potty breaks every 3-4 hours. While this is what we expected for the first week and have been spoiled, we have adjusted accordingly and have shifts for who takes him out when. We’ve been able to help Ace slow down when he is eating (Corgi’s are very food motivated and will just gobble up their whole bowl of food at once if you let them) and using it to our advantage to teach him how to “lie down”. He has learned the “sit” command to the point that we can tell him with distractions around and he will respond (most of the time), but lie down has been a slower process.
We have also started working on introducing Ace to other dogs. He has up-close met 3 dogs as of this week including: Leo - the very large but gentle rottweiler/lab mix, Sadie - A medium-sized terrier mix, and Winston - a miniature Australian shepherd just over 7 months old. While Ace still barks at other dogs upon first meeting them, he is starting to be more relaxed overall during interactions and is becoming more respectful of their space.
While there is still a ton of training to do, a lot of learning for Adam and I as well as Ace to be had, and plenty of adventures to come; this is where we are currently! I hope you’ll enjoy the occasional post as we continue this adventure!
I am a student affairs professional, an amateur chef, and an adventurer at heart.
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