Behavior Expectations

There are certain rules that Shelby has in our household, that you can expect Shelby to try and break while staying at your home.

  1. She is not allowed on the furniture or your lap unless invited. Invite Shelby by patting your lap with your hand.
  2. She is not allowed to be on the bed unless invited. When we take a nap with her, we set down a towel, and that is her signal that it's OK to join us.

If she misbehaves, and hops on you or the furniture, Shelby recognizes the command OFF. We use OFF as an all purpose command to quit whatever shenanigans she might be up to.

Shame on you naughty pug.


June 4, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (7)

Leaving Shelby


Shelby suffers from separation anxiety. We're not sure if this will be true if there's another dog around, but right now, when Steven and I leave, she runs around the house barking her head off, and then mopes.

If everyone is leaving...

We've tried everything short of drugs. It will sound like the world is ending. If you give her whole access to the house, she will eventually get over your absence, and start to break some rules. For example, she escaped from her baby gate once, and we found her paw prints on the couch, paw prints on the bed, and 1 dirty sock pulled from the laundry.

When you leave, it's highly recommended that you limit Shelby's access to 1 room, with access to water and her litter box.

If someone is staying...
This is a lot easier. Shelby won't go nuts, if she can see the leaving guests out to their car and watch them drive off. I'm not sure why, but it's tried and tested, and totally works. Every morning, Steven brings Shelby down to the car to see me off to work, and she trotts back upstairs like nothing's happened. If I leave without her seeing me, she goes nuts.

If she does happen to go nuts, getting her attention and making her perform a trick or two for a small treat works really well in getting her mind off the situation.

June 3, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (9)

After the meal

Ah yes, how can we talk about dogs, without talking about poop!

The command for Shelby to poop is "Go potty." She might look at you like she doesn't know what you're referring to. Or pretend she didn't hear you. But she understands...stubborn pug.

Luckily, Shelby is also box trained. If she knows where her box is, she will use it. The litter is flushable. Wet litter should be scooped out.

She will also go outside, however, she doesn't know how to ask to go outside. She does know how to use a doggie door, and will find her way out there to do her business.

Here's photographic proof that Shelby knows where to poop.

June 2, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (12)

Feeding Shelby

Shelby's food

Shelby gets 1/2 cup of kibble for breakfast, and another 1/4 kibble for dinner.
In between, she can have some snacks, but she should "work" for them. Shelby knows how to:

  • sit
  • shake / high-five/ wave
  • lie down
  • dance (hold your hand above her, and ask her to dance)
  • touch (if you hold your fist out, she will touch it with her nose)
  • back (if you point, and say "back" she will back up, and whine the entire time.)

Shelby can have any sort of dog snack, though preferably small ones. She also likes most vegetables.

She is also the kind of dog that will leave no kibble behind. If there's a bowl of kibble sitting around, there won't be for long.

What not to feed Shelby

Please don't feed Shelby citrus fruits. We gave her a taste once, and she barfed. Also, please no rawhides. She's a gulper, and we're concerned she'll choke on smaller rawhide pieces. She loves pig ears, but please only in moderation. She barfs if she has too much of it.


If you're cooking, she has a tendency to stand below you to try to catch food. To correct this behavior, Steven and I have taught her to go "up on your seat." For us, this means she is to sit on a window seat, that is far enough away to be safe, but still close enough to watch. If you point to a seat and tell her firmly to "go up on your seat," Shelby will sit there and stay out of the kitchen. You might need to periodically remind her to get back up there. But she listens every time.

June 1, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (5)

Going out with Shelby

Shelby loves walks, but if the weather is inclement, or you're feeling tired, she can do without.

If you do go out, she's a terrible puller. We use the Sense-ible harness to correct this. The lead latches onto the front of the harness, and collar. That will control her pulling.

At the Antique Fair

Shelby is not dog aggressive, and is really friendly and gentle with kids. However, we're not sure she understands what a cat is. She doesn't chase them. We think she thinks they are weird dogs. But cats don't seem to like her, so it's best to keep them apart.

If you want to take Shelby to a dog park, please make it a small dog park. We have tried bringing Shelby to the big dog park.

  • gets scared
  • humped by some overeager suitor
  • chased by all the big dogs, like she's the rabbit at a greyhound race

If Shelby starts to hide between your legs, or trying to crawl up on you, it means she's not having a good time. If she tries to crawl up on your shoulder, it means she's REALLY not having a good time.

If you go, please bring water for her to drink. She used to get urinary tract infections, and we think these had to do with the dog park water fountain. After going to the dog park, please rinse/wipe Shelby's belly and paws.

If there's a chance to go to the beach, then Shelby will be thrilled. She can swim, (but not very well), but she loves to dig. She gets a lot of sand in her eyes, so please rinse them when you get home.

May 31, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (2)

Playing with Shelby

Shelby loves to play. Especially if she hasn't been out for a walk. If she's feeling playful, and you are ignoring her, she will bump a toy into your knee.

With her toys

For some reason, she's not a fan of rubber toys, but loves stuffed toys. If you're at home, she'll play fetch, but for some reason, we can't get her to fetch out in the wild. She also loves to play tug. When in doubt, move the toy like a squirrel. It drives her nuts.

May 29, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (10)