Poppy (previously known as Isla) has been homed.
She is a small sized, lively, playful, affectionate and fun white and brindle spayed lurcher bitch.
By greyhound standards she is tiny as she weighs just 22kg as of April 2013. She is however still growing, albeit slowly as is normal for an almost mature “teenage” dog. Best guess for age is somewhere around 12-18 months old.
Here is the most recent report on Poppy and it has been written her her foster carer, the lady that knows Poppy best:
Poppy came into my care on 12th May 2013. Poppy had very little training or manners. She did however settle very quickly into home life.
Poppy is a very exuberant girl, with a gentle nature. She enjoys company and is very loving. I have not witnessed any issues with greeting people, but as with any adolescent dog she needs reminding occasionally not to jump up (this is usually first thing in the morning or if you return home). She has learned to sit for attention and will often sit if she has been told off. Poppy will whine for a few minutes when left alone, but then will settle.
Poppy has only had a couple of ‘accidents’ since being in foster care, but is generally a clean girl. She has been trained to ‘do her business’ outside but would easily learn and other command should her new owner prefer. Poppy is incredibly inquisitive and as such finds the kitchen bin quite alluring – we have addressed this by keeping a water spray sat on top of it.
Poppy accepts the boundaries set within the home, and has not yet tried to jump over the stair gate (I imagine she would do this quite easily if she so wished). She has had supervised visits into the other downstairs rooms and has learned to lie on the dog cushion in the lounge when allowed in with the family in the evening. She is intrigued by the television!
Poppy has not been allowed upstairs. We have kept to these boundaries strictly so that her new owner can choose how Poppy integrates into family life without having to train out newly learned habits.
Poppy will generally behave very well – but she becomes mischievous if left too long (typical adolescent behavior). I would not recommend leaving food unattended with Poppy. She is an active chewer. We have addressed this by providing her with several chew toys. If Poppy starts to mouth inappropriately, she is given a chew toy instead. Mouthing is now minimal – but the firm boundaries will need to be continued in her new home. I have not witnessed any aggressive behavior.
Poppy has two meals a day and has learned to ‘sit’ and ‘wait’ for her food. Poppy has her food and water from a raised stand. Poppy does not always eat her whole meal in the morning. I often will put the remainder into a treat ball, which she enjoys playing with throughout the day. The treat ball will go with her to her new home as she loves it so much!
Poppy sleeps in a dog crate and views the crate as her safe space to be. She has a combination of a duvet and a blanket to sleep on and will often tuck herself up underneath the duvet! Poppy likes to have her toys in bed with her and at the end of the day we gather them up and put them in her bed. Poppy will often just have a lie down and a chew on her nylabone. I have kept a blanket draped over the top of her crate. She is quite happy when my dog curls up in the crate with her. I have never closed the crate door or used it as a place of punishment.
Poppy enjoys her walks. Currently she has an hour or so walk in the morning before breakfast, and she then spends most of the day resting or sleeping. Poppy has learned to walk on the lead very nicely. She is not worried by traffic or people, and is learning not to play whilst on the lead, but as with any adolescent dog she needs reminding sometimes. Poppy loves to play in the garden and enjoys playing with a ball. She is learning that it can be fun to play ball with people, but she hasn’t quite mastered bringing it back to be thrown again (my own dog is patiently trying to teach her)!
I have just started training Poppy to walk off lead. This is the start of a long process, but a week in she is doing very well. She is very typical of an adolescent dog in that she has her own time frame, but with positive reinforcement this will improve. Poppy is learning to greet other dogs courteously, and enjoys playing. When she gets over excited I ask her to ‘settle’. If she continues with the over excited behaviour, I get her to sit until she has calmed down, which usually doesn’t take long.
I have only taken Poppy to the vets for her vaccinations, but she had no issues with any element of the visit.
Poppy has been trained using Clicker training and treats. Water spray is used to discourage unwanted behavior with a firm “NO”. Poppy responds to training very well and has progressed very quickly. Praise and positive reinforcement are the way to this girl’s heart as she is very eager to please and just wants to be loved.
Poppy still has a few behaviors to iron out, but in my opinion they are behaviors you would find in any adolescent dog. Poppy likes to dig in the garden. This is ongoing, but it is being discouraged. Poppy enjoys taking things from the washing basket (especially socks)! She is easily distracted with a ball or toy to retrieve the items though.
New Home requirements:
I would recommend that Poppy is homed where she is not left for long periods of time on a regular basis. Poppy needs space to run around and definitely needs an owner who is committed to continuing with her training and boundaries. Poppy would love the company of another dog (she is currently curled up asleep with my dog).
Poppy definitely needs at least an hour walk every day. I would not recommend Poppy to be homed with children younger than teenage purely due to her size. She would easily overwhelm younger children and probably would knock them over by accident especially when she is playing, as she doesn’t always look where she is going!
Poppy is a delightful girl and if I could keep her, I would. She will make a fantastic family companion who will be loyal, loving and entertaining. Poppy is very easy to train and a quick learner. She has a mischievous streak and a very big heart. She is very funny and full of character. Poppy is a sociable girl with people and other dogs.
Poppy will benefit most from positive reinforcement and kindness she has had a rough start and deserves a kind loving home, who will give her the boundaries she needs. Poppy is a work in progress, but the pros by far outweigh the cons. Poppy has typical adolescent and Lurcher behaviors. I am fairly certain she has pointer in the mix somewhere, but as she was a rescue we will never know.