Daily life in Tokyo

Shinjuku Gyoen - Mother and Child Forest, Part 2

A short virtual walk through the park...

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Great progress, Konbu!

2017/10/13 Update: Konbu has been adopted!

Some notes about Konbu's progress:

  • His biggest improvement has been walking on a leash. During our first week, whenever I took him outside, he would always cower or try to bolt. So I spent a great deal of time with him on very tedious walks, where I would stop walking every time he pulled on the leash. It's slow, patient work, but it's paying off. He still pulls, but usually not as hard. It helps that his new leash is a bit longer, so he has more room to explore.
  • He likes to potty outside, but he also uses pee pads indoors. He's a very big puppy, though, so I have learned to put out 2 or 4 in a grid so he is less likely to "miss".
  • He doesn't bark often. If he starts to get excited about a toy or food he might let out one big bark, at which point I sit on the couch and offer him a quiet toy and some petting to distract him.
  • He still has lots of restless dreams, but they are starting to sound less scary.
  • The KONG is his favorite toy ever, but it sometimes has really delicious stuff inside, so that's no big surprise.
  • Originally, he would only approach his food and water if I left the room, but now he will eat if I go sit somewhere else.

And finally...

Hiding from the big bad monster!

Hiding from the big bad monster!

He still gets scared of the most random things! The #1 Most Terrifying Thing in the home is a 12" Totoro doll which usually lives on the table behind the TV and watches over the doorway. Today I moved it so I could dust. Now that Konbu is aware of its existence, he is sneaking around so as not to disturb it. Second most terrifying thing? The ottoman, because it opens for storage. Also, plastic grocery bags. I try so hard to understand this dog...

Konbu's first week

2017/10/13 Update: Konbu has been adopted!

Konbu is about 4 months old, and nearing 8 kilograms. He came to our house a week ago, and we will foster him for a few weeks until the next foster family can take him. (He'll soon outgrow the size limits for our apartment.)

My buddy is so handsome!

My buddy is so handsome!


He lived in the wild for the first month or two of his life, so he is very frightened of almost everything! But he has chosen our couch as his "safe zone". He won't sit on a lap, though he likes to lay next to us and lean his head on us. If we are downstairs, he prefers to hide under the bed. At night he sleeps in a dog pen in the bedroom - he doesn't whine, and he waits patiently for us to let him out when we wake up.

Konbu has learned to sit on command, but he is still unsure of my motives. He thinks I'm going to grab him, so he sometimes cringes from the hand that offers the treat. He has learned to sit patiently while I eat, as long as I reward him with a treat after I am finished eating.
 

He loves his toys

He loves his toys

He always uses a pee pad indoors, though he sometimes hits the edge, so I always supervise him so I can clean up. He also likes to chew on things, but he is easily distracted from chewing my belongings if I give him a toy instead. He loves his toys! If he has a lot of energy, he tries to sprint back and forth across the room to tire himself out. He occasionally gets excited about his food or toys and gives a bark or two, but I can distract him by inviting him onto the couch for a quiet cuddle before playing with him again.

Walking is scary! But fun!

Walking is scary! But fun!

He is just starting to walk on leash without pulling so hard. The beginning and end of the walk are very scary times for him, but in the middle of the walk, he is happy and prances with his tail up. He is mostly afraid of other dogs, but he has begun to let some of them exchange sniffs with him. He doesn't like it at all when people try to approach him. He was okay walking in the rain, until I opened my umbrella! Terrifying!

To sum it up: He's scared, but friendly, and making progress.

Meet Konbu!

2017/10/13 Update: Konbu has been adopted!

Our new foster pup arrived today! His name is Konbu. (That's the Japanese word for the edible seaweed also known as kelp.)

Still wary of everything!

Still wary of everything!

Kon-chan is just over 3 months old and already 7kg! He was born in the wild, so he is super shy around people. We will be keeping him for about 1 month to give him extra attention until his scheduled future foster family can take him. He'll soon exceed the size limit for our apartment lease, but we can give him lots of cuddles in the meantime! (...if he'll let us. This is going to require a lot of food rewards.)

He decided I was trustworthy enough to lean on after I shared a bite of chicken.

He decided I was trustworthy enough to lean on after I shared a bite of chicken.

If you are interested in meeting Konbu, come to one of the monthly Tokyo adoption events!

Visit ArkBark.net to see more adoptable dogs and cats in Tokyo and Osaka. The site is viewable in both English and Japanese. (As of this writing, Konbu is only viewable on the Japanese version of the site, but he'll be translated to the English site soon!)

Momoe is adopted!

Momoe has been adopted! Tomorrow she will take a plane ride to her new forever home in Osaka, and she will spend her days at the veterinary where her new mom works. So today she cleaned up a bit.

I was struggling to keep things light and positive while trying to give her little teeth a brushing, but she kept trying to bite the toothbrush. I thought it was in protest, but when I finally let her clamp down, she showed me how it is done. She likes this toothbrush way better than any of her toys! We'll miss you, little smartypants.

Momoe-Final.jpg

Here she is cleaning her own teeth. After I took the video below, I let go of the brush and she kept at it for several minutes. I took the brush away when it started to disintegrate. If you try this at home, don't use human toothpaste, as it can be harmful to dogs. And maybe best not to let them ruin a toothbrush that they could swallow pieces of. You can buy little toys instead that are more durable and have toothbrush-like bristles.

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