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Dog training 101

Written by: Tracy November 11 2011 Brack was definitely my first love. My second love? A little guy with fluffy white hair and a big, happy smile. Our Terrier mix, CiCi, captured my heart from the moment my eyes met his. I got my little sidekick when I was a junior in college. Everyone was...

Written by: Tracy

Brack was definitely my first love. My second love? A little guy with fluffy white hair and a big, happy smile.

Our Terrier mix, CiCi, captured my heart from the moment my eyes met his. I got my little sidekick when I was a junior in college. Everyone was doing it. I mean, can we all recall Elle Woods for a minute? And Paris Hilton had one. Jessica Simpson toted hers around in Louis Vuitton and even one of my closest friends was able to bring her long-haired and completely adorable Chihuahua to our journalism classes. (Seriously, her little angel would sleep right through.) So when I picked out my little guy, I knew he would be my absolute best friend. I could already see him coming to classes with me, shopping at the mall and spending hours catching balls and swimming in the river.

That’s not exactly what happened.

He was actually first named Cupcake because I thought he looked as sweet as the yummiest treat you would find at a bakery (I know, the food analogy again, I might need an intervention.) But after having him for long enough to realize that his demeanor was more akin to a bucking bronco than a sweet little pastry, I shortened it to CiCi. I guess I can blame it on the fact that I was too young to properly train an animal, or the fact that my dog was a very special case, or maybe even on his delicate mixture of genes (Terrier, Chihuahua, Spitz). No matter what the reason, my little dumpling came complete with the affection for peeing on, well, everything and the need to eat my shoes on a regular basis. (Oh yes, even my favorite pair of red high heels!) He also came complete with the worst case of separation anxiety that I have seen in an animal.

After years of getting to know CiCi, our lives have completely merged. He finally grew out of the puppy stage so my Manolo Blahniks are safe once again and Brack is now quite fond of him. But there are also things I may never be able to do with CiCi: He still has to walk down the street with his muzzle on and he will probably always remain way too hyper when friends come to visit. I can’t let him free at the park because he will most definitely run away and he will always partake in a 30 minute barking session at the sound of a doorbell, squirrel in the backyard or creak in the stairs.

I love him anyway, though.

And now, he rarely has an accident, spends much of his time chewing on a big orange ball that we got him for his birthday and spends a peculiar amount of time sunbathing on our back patio. All it takes is one wag of his little tail when I come home or the sight of how proud he is when he does one of his seven tricks, and I am 100 percent sure that CiCi is the dog for me. He really is my best friend.

But what happens when you insert a new love into my life?

I wish I knew. I’ve got another little guy coming in no time at all and I can already foresee that there may be a little jealousy problem between my current favorite little dude and my new one. So, we are starting to take proactive steps now to help make the transition a little easier.

We are currently playing a “baby sounds” CD to CiCi every evening. The CD comes complete with different levels of baby cries, from woos to the real good howling stuff. CiCi doesn’t seem to be bothered as of yet. He simply turns his little ears up and then continues to play with his ball. Let’s hope he’s used to it by the time he’s up close and personal to the real deal. We are also working on new command words like “wait,” as well as, trying to space out how much time he actually spends curled up on my lap. We also fully intend to do the blanket trick and bring Braxton’s blanket home for CiCi to smell before we get there.

Fingers crossed.

Right now, I have great faith that it will all work out and that CiCi will find a new best friend in Braxton and that they will spend their days frolicking in the backyard and going on insanely fun adventures.

But just in case it doesn’t turn out exactly like I plan, does anyone know if Cesar Millan happens to read this blog?

Lots of love,

Tracy

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