TOBY - 6 YEAR OLD MALE
STATUS: IN FOSTER CARE
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FOSTER UPDATE: MAY 20, 2023
Toby’s personality is absolutely coming out. He recently showed me how easily it is for him to slip out of a harness and zoom away from me. After 5 minutes of panicking, I found him with his new golden retriever friend. He did not come to me easily, and after lots of treats and 15 minutes of cajoling I got him back home.
Thank goodness we met with Joan for a behavioural consult the next day. Toby took well to the training and learns fast. He is quite pushy if you don’t give him enough of the high value snacks when he thinks he did amazing.
Toby also went to see the vet for his dhpp shot and was a lot more calm, which was nice to see.
Toby is cautiously meeting more dog friends in the neighborhood. He does great with all the pug friends and walks well with them together. He has regular meetups with a golden retriever puppy who’s still quite boisterous and he is really calm with him. Toby wants love from the resident pug, but she’s still snarky to everyone.
At home Toby is sleeping in bed with my oldest more and hogs the bed. He wakes me up at 5am to let me know it’s time for breakfast. He loves snuggling on the couch while we watch television but reacts to the dogs on the tv. But then he takes all his toys to show off, so I’m wondering if he was trying to play with them? All in all, he’s a wonderful dog with a few quirks.
FOSTER UPDATE: APRIL 14, 2023
Toby is a real pleasure to have in the house. Over the last month, he’s so much better with visitors at the house. When my family comes over, he barks to let us know someone is there and when he realizes that he knows them, he shows off his toys. He now demands attention with pets or a friendly game of tug of war. Which means he’s been spoiled with new stuffies to show off.
On walks, Toby has good days and bad. Some days, the treats work really well and he’s not reactive at all with people passing by. But there are other days where everyone and everything is a threat (including a piece of trash blown by the wind) and he’s on attack mode. He still hates bicycles, so we are extra careful when he’s out with kids in the neighborhood.
With the warmer weather, Toby wants to hang out in the backyard to yell at the squirrels and birds. He’s reluctant to come into the house and the recall isn’t so good. In the house, he continues to yell at all the animals on tv.
Toby is getting a lot friendlier with other dogs in the neighborhood. He seems to favour the breeds that drool a lot and wants to be friends with them. We come home both covered in another dog's saliva. He’s still not sure how to play, but he likes to stand next to them while they sniff each other out.
He is still quite the food thief and finds ways to get to food that I’m still not sure how he does it. We’re extra extra careful with snacks now as his allergies seem to come and go.
FOSTER UPDATE: MARCH 10, 2023
What a difference a month makes! Toby has definitely settled in and what a personality!!! We are still working on getting him comfortable with strangers but there’s progress. Toby has made friends with a rambunctious golden retriever pup down the street. We haven’t let them off leash together yet because both do not have good recall or great social manners yet. It is quite adorable when I see how happy Toby is when sees his friend. He has also taken walks with another neighbourhood pug and is quite calm when he sees them. He still doesn’t quite trust men yet, but it’s progress.
Toby is also showing me what he doesn’t like. He’s quite a fast walker, so I made the mistake of trying to take him for a run. Well, he thought his leash was trying to strangle him and he decided that he needed to kill it. So we spent the rest of the walk with him trying to tackle the leash and he jumps really high (been trying to get a video but it’s too dark) Anything that goes faster than him is also not ok with him. He hates bikes, scooters and motorcycles. He also likes to mark all trees and cars - they are all his!
Toby wasn’t too sure of walks in the snow when he first came to us, but now he loves to eat it but it has to be fresh in the backyard.
He stopped patrolling at night and now prefers the couch (both dog couch and human couch) to sleep all night. He is also quite the scavenger when it comes to food. We realized he can figure out how to move the chair to get food on the dining room table, so the kids are often reminded to not leave food out.
The resident pug is not into cuddling, but Toby tries to sneakily snuggle up to her. She lets him get somewhat close, but then tells him off when he’s too close. I try to tell him she’s nasty with me too but it doesn’t stop him from trying.
I almost forgot to mention that Toby is very skilled in stealing my fuzzy sweater. There’s one that is his favourite, also my favourite. I will be sitting on the couch and he will “sneakily” try to climb in it while I’m wearing it. He ends up stuck on my back where I have to take it off so that he can sleep on it.
FOSTER UPDATE: FEBRUARY 5, 2023
Toby is a sweet dog who has started to become more comfortable in his new environment. He prefers to sleep with my eldest and is a bit of a bed hog. He likes to cuddle with me on the couch and has claimed every faux fur-like blanket and jacket to sleep on. It’s all his … even if I’m wearing it at the time. He does love his stuffed animals and shows off his juggling skills when playing with them. He is good with commands and knows sit, stay (although not for long) and lie down.
Seeing his current behaviour, we feel it is possible that Toby may not have had predictable interactions with strangers, especially men, in his former life. He is uncomfortable with the unknown and can be reactive to unfamiliar people and dogs. He is getting used to the house and all the noises of the neighbourhood although is quite vocal if anyone rings the doorbell or sees anyone walk by the house. Quite the guard dog, he likes to make sure all the humans are protected at night. He is good with the resident senior pug and was quite the gentleman in getting to know two of the neighbourhood pugs, but can be reactive with strange large dogs. Because he is food motivated, we have been able to make some progress on changing this behaviour but have engaged the services of a professional behaviour consultant/trainer to assist with his behaviour modification.
Toby is energetic and strong, and it sometimes feels like I am fostering a large breed rather than a pug. He’s built a bit like a boxer actually. Well proportioned and muscular for his 14+ kg, he's tall enough to reach the table to steal food, much to my kids' dismay. I'm reminding them to push the chairs in and put the food on the centre of the table.
Toby had his first vet appointment a few days ago and did really well. The female vet took a good 15 minutes to build rapport, giving him treats and petting him. So of course they became fast friends. He does have some allergy symptoms which include a huge bald spot under his neck and armpits and some irritation on his paws. He has one ear that requires drops. I have changed his food to see if that makes a difference. His blood test results were all good. His nails are in rough shape; some nails are cracked and really long. A nail he lost some time ago is slowly growing back. He runs at the sight of the clippers and because of his reactivity, I haven't pushed it but did have the nails trimmed at the vet clinic. It will take some time to get them in shape. He is now microchipped and up to date on his rabies shot. He will be returning to the vet after an appropriate time to get his DHPP vaccination.
Toby is a very engaged dog with enormous potential. With some help to feel more comfortable in stressful situations, he’ll be able to relax and enjoy life even more.
INTAKE: JANUARY 7, 2O23
Meet 6 year old neutered male pug named TOBY who has just been surrendered because his senior owner can no longer care for him. In typical pug fashion, after meeting his elderly foster sister, he made it clear to his foster family that he was ready for his dinner and promptly inhaled it without breathing. We look forward to learning more about this busy little man.