I got a puppy at the start of the Corona Virus pandemic in 2020, here's what I learned.

April 14th 2020

In the car to the Netherlands/ Belgium border to pick up the thing I've wanted the most in my whole entire life; a beagle puppy.

The door opens and behold, the most beautiful beagle i've ever seen, barking and jumping up at the door waiting to be taken home. We take her to the car and begin the 2 hour drive home. She's calm but a little scared of the car, for the 1st half hour she sat on my lap in the passenger seat, I decided it might be more comfortable for her to sit in the back with me, so I get in the back, and she immediatly hides under the seat. I didn't want to make her more stressed so I leave here there and stroke her back softly for the rest of the drive.

Finally home

After hours of driving (with a slight detour to the pet store) we finally get home, we get through the door and put our new friend Kygo on the floor to explore her new home.

We immediately see her characteristics shine, shes brave, inquisitive and loves to sniff. Every corner of every room must be inspected.

The first night

LOUD. We decided for Kygos safety to use a bench, we tried during the day to get her used to it, lots of treats, blankets and tucked into the corner of the room to make her feel safe. She hated it. For the first few weeks she cried when she was in the bench, we had to sleep on the floor next to the bench, let her out every hours during the night to go to the bathroom, it felt like hell.

Potty

We actually got lucky with this, for the first 2 weeks she went on the floor in the house. We tried puppy training pads, but they were a waste of time. We stood in the park with her 10 times a day, rain or shine she had to go in the park, but that didn't happen, she would only go on the balcony. She would hold it on the walks then the second we got home run to the balcony and do her business there. We wasn't sure how to change the behaviour.

We got a piece of fake grass to put outside, and made sure she went on there, but she would only go in the corner where the grass wasn't. The one day I decided it got to gross outside, with the heat the smell was terrible. I deep cleaned the wood so there was no smell left, and blocked her access to the balcony. For the next couple of weeks we went for walks so long she couldn't hold it anymore and had to go in the park. Success! We kept this up for a few weeks until we were sure she only wanted to go on the grass. When we finally let her on the balcony again she only did a number 1 on the grass if she really had to, and held in the rest for the walk.

Food

Food was a difficult one, she wanted everything that wasn't her food, we tried for months with so many different foods, but nothing worked. She just wouldn't eat her food. Because we were changing her food so much we thought it was normal that she has loose stool. But after seeing other dogs eating and going number 2 we thought something might be wrong, we did the de-worming, kept her food the same but it stayed the same, so we went to the Vet. They told us she probably had a parasite, so she went on antibiotics for 4 weeks, it was tough, no treats, special food, no sniffing other dogs poop, but it was finally fixed, the vet also told us she had a weak stomach and recommended a special; all natural compressed food. This is by far her favorite, the whole bowl is gone in seconds every time we give it to her.

Playing with other dogs

Kygo is amazing with other dogs and children, she has a really kind character.

If the other dog / child is small she plays gently. We had a friend with a 12-week-old puppy, Kygo laid down at let the other puppy jump on her and hang from her ears.

If the other dog is big, she'll play hard, run as fast as she can to keep up, and play fight to the point we feel like they're murdering eachother, it took us a while to realize that it's just how dogs play.

Today

Kygo is 9 months old, she sleeps the whole night, goes to the bathroom in the park, eats all of her food. We thought we were over the puppy stage but then. puberty happened. It feels like she forgot everything she learned, she tests us to the limits, jumps onto the counter for food, eats from the floor during our walks, barks when we leave the house, it's a nightmare.

But because of what we've already been through we know it's just a phase, and she'll get over it, we just have to hang in there.

Published: 4th October 2020

Written by Lewi Hussey