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February 10, 2022: Paloma Is Five Months Old

What a difference three months makes. Where is that little tyke of a puppy?

She’s still there, but in a 38-pound body. In four more months, Paloma will reach her full height and by the time she’s one-year old (in August), she will fill out to her adult size.

Paloma is growing and changing so fast that our neighbor did not recognize her a few days ago.

I decided to scroll through my collection of photos and pulled out “comparison shots.” Good grief, pictures surely paint a thousand words!

And thank goodness for the short spontaneous videos I took that captured live footage that made me grin from ear to ear: one of her first walks and breaking in her new yellow raincoat.

Another cool video is Paloma getting a workout eating her meal on a Snuffle Mat recommended by her breeder. I had never heard of a Snuffle Mat until she mentioned it. When I researched benefits of the mat, I was sold. And now that we have been using it for a while, it is living up to its claims:

  • It encourages the dog’s natural instincts to forage for food

  • It slows down intake of food. When we used bowls for our previous dogs, they often “inhaled” their kibble within seconds without chewing – sometimes resulting in choking

  • Involves the same or more energy as taking a walk

  • Exerting energy reduces stress

  • Encourages mental stimulation in turn reducing chances for destroying valuable items around the house (due to boredom)

I can say this much: Now that Paloma has earned privileges to wander around the house, she never chews on shoes, doesn’t take tempting items off the coffee table, and (except on rare occasions) she’s not interested in biting the legs of our nice furniture. She does, however, like Louie’s socks.

We are getting over the hump of the early and most trying puppy months – and it appears we are reaping the rewards of our efforts.

So far…

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