Czar and the Bunyip; dogs and babies

Our Little Bunyip is nearly 6 months old and watching him absorb the world around him, learn about his own body and what it can do, is absolutely fascinating. Watching the dogs interact with him is especially wonderful. Dog body language can be very oblique, but sometimes it is so clear. 

Czar, who we estimate is probably 11 now, has definitely decided that this baby belongs to him. He was never as interested in the Wee Monster as Ishka was and then Bolo. He demonstrates this very clearly, offering his proximity as rarely before.

Today, Little Bunyip and I were sitting on the couch, when Czar came up and leaned his long back on the edge next to us, clearly looking for a scratch. He allowed a small hand to bury itself in his coat, but when I reached for my phone, he took himself off to his crate.


Little Bunyip watched Czar with great interest. I called Czar and he came back for more pats.


Czar initially stood with ears back, keeping an ear on LB and me.


Something drew Czar’s attention, and his ears flicked forward, but he remained relaxed.


Czar turned and put his head into the reach of LB. He allowed those little hands to grab his face, without showing any moon eyes, teeth or making any noise.

I’m always so impressed by his patience and trust!

 Of course, he might have just been looking for crumbs!

Of course, he might have just been looking for crumbs!

NVSDC Bootcamp 2018 - Kit’s first sledding event

Very impressed with the little guy - we did a little bit of stake out training on the back lawn, and one introductory sniff around the caravan, and then we were off, travelling all the way to Ulupna Island, for NVSDC’s Mushing on the Murray Bootcamp. 


Kit travelled really well, riding in the berth next to Frankie. We put his bedding and toys in there so he had cuddle items and chew toys - so far, no bed chewing has happened. 🤞🏽 


We arrived after dark and woke up to a glorious camp site! 



Getting up during the night and first thing in the morning to toilet train a puppy does have a silver lining!

During the next day and a half, Kit spent time on stake out, on lead, or in the caravan. He was a little legend, almost never complaining about being tethered, unlike Frankie!


Meanwhile, we people folk did the Bootcamp thing -

learning about the gear used in sledding... 


getting harnesses fitted to suit each dog...


doing some practice drills to get the dogs pulling and passing...

and some practice runs... 


We also enjoyed some time around the campfire


Before an early night and an early morning mini race


It was an awesome weekend - we just wish the beautiful Murray was a bit closer! 

Kit’s first week

Wow things change so quickly with a puppy around!

Kit’s first couple of days with us were enormous - so many new things for a little pup. A big drive, a new family, a new house, his first collar... when we first got home Kit didn’t venture far from my ankles.  If he could have climbed into my lap, he would have, but it was occupied.


Our first big, accidental! success was with the crate training - Kit almost immediately decided his crate was a safe place when there weren’t any ankles to shadow. He hasn’t cried overnight and generally accepts that the crate is a good place to hang out when we’re cooking etc.


Over the last week his crate has started to accumulate some soft and chew toys, and he loves stretching out in funny positions next  to the bed!

Much to my relief, because carrying him and the baby wasn’t really possible, he’s worked out how to go down the back stairs, as well as up. He’s learnt how to stand up to drink out of the mounted water bowl (I haven’t managed to capture a pic of that yet, I am trying, it’s so cute!) and we’re working on the toilet training. Having to get up overnight to the Small Bunyip makes it easy to make sure we take Kit out at least once during the night.  

And best of all, he’s learning how to get along with the Big Dogs.  

When we introduced them all at the breeder’s place, everyone was more interested in sheep poo and farm smells. Once home, Czar and Frankie were extremely keen to sniff every centimetre of Kit, who was inclined to either sit firmly on his smelliest region to control the situation or to seek help. Gradually, he’s come out of his shell. Czar very quickly asserted his position as pack leader by giving the pup one good nip, and now Kit waits to be invited to play with Czar. Frankie, however, has his crate invaded, his heels nipped, his collar tag nibbled - sometimes we have to separate them when we feel the (just turned!) 13yo is struggling. Both adult dogs have extended Kit “puppy licence” and tolerate him getting in their space in a way they wouldn’t allow another adult - amazing the way that instinct has kicked in, after 10-13 years since being around puppies!

Fortunately for all of us, every so often, Kit just has to nap!