Sammy #6 Chocolate Labrador Retriever Mix Male 1.5 Years Old ID#2923

black labrador retriever mixSammy was born into Brookline’s care on 11/26/2020 as part of Nora’s litter while she was in foster care.  Sammy was adopted out at 8 weeks old to first time dog owners.

chocolate labrador retriever mixUnfortunately for Sammy, he was surrendered back to Brookline at 11 months old as they were having a hard time training Sammy with two small children and is back with his foster family.  Please read his blog from the bottom up to learn more about him.

Sammy is now available: https://www.petfinder.com/dog/sammy-55048136/pa/warrington/brookline-labrador-rescue-pa06/

September 20, 2022

I am happy to report that FM and FD finally got it together and got video of me at my training class.  FM has been taking me on Tuesday and Saturday, and she tells me that I am doing awesome!  We have started to do more off leash work now too.  FM always says how smart I am.  Let me know what you think!

We went back to the cottage again.  FM and FD said we needed to take the docks out.  I don’t know why they would want to take them out because its really fun sitting in the sun out there to dry off, and the view is amazing!  chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix

My friend Molly came over to play again because her mom, and their friend were helping FM and FD lift the docks that day.  First we went on a walk around the lake.  Molly is a great walking buddy.

While FM, and FD were lifting the docks, Molly and I and foster brother Max had so much fun playing chase and tug with this fake duck.  This was the first time that Molly chased me around and I loved it!  Max even got in on the action, and was chasing Molly too, and playing tug to try and get that duck from me.  After all the fun, I needed a nap.  I convinced FM that I had shrunk and was the perfect lap dog size.chocolate labrador retriever mix

When we got home, I went exploring in the bushes looking for that pesky squirrel that tries to raid the bird feeder.  When I was in there something pinched my face.  I just scratched it off, and went on my way.  This is the second time I got pinched like that.  FM says it was a yellow jacket but I didn’t see anything.  A few minutes later, FM got worried because she said I was swelling.  My face did feel a little funny…chocolate labrador retriever mix

FM said that I should take a Benadryl because she thought I was having an allergic reaction!  I started to believe her when my eyes started getting all itchy and puffy too! She said it would start to work soon so I took a nap.  I don’t know why I got so sleepy!chocolate labrador retriever mix

When I woke up, I felt a lot better and FM said the Benadryl worked because I wasn’t so puffy anymore.  I was hungry for my lunch too!  FM knew I was feeling okay because I ate it right up!chocolate labrador retriever mix

FM says we are going to have to watch out for those yellow jacket things now since it looks like they make me go all puffy.  I don’t want that to happen again! FM says I’m all back to normal and handsome as ever.chocolate labrador retriever mixTalk to you all later.  It looks like I need to get back to chasing off those pesky squirrels again!chocolate labrador retriever mix

September 8, 2022

Sammy here back again, reporting in!chocolate labrador retriever mixWe have been busy around here again.  My fun foster sister moved back to college in Pittsburgh, and my really tall foster brother graduated college in Pittsburgh so he’s back here with me now.  We traded one for another.  He’s fun too.  He likes to play tug with me with my new Jolly ball, and plays chase and hide and seek with me outside.  He’s really fast and he likes to chase me so we have a great time outside, especially since it has cooled off!

I really missed foster Mom when she went to Pittsburgh.  I followed her around and sat right next to her (she said she thought I could find a more comfortable spot but I didn’t care)chocolate labrador retriever mixand gave her lots of kisses when I could reach.  chocolate labrador retriever mixI always try to make FM laugh.  The other day she gave me an old magazine since she knows I love to rip up paper, she thought it was the funniest thing when I was showing her the piece I ripped off upside down.  It’s the small things that amuse her.  ha ha.

After Foster Mom did all the moving, we headed back up to NH.  I rode in the back with my furry foster brother, Max.  chocolate labrador retriever mixI’m always a really good rider in the back when FM drives chocolate labrador retriever mixbut I sometimes try to convince foster Dad to tell FM to sit in the back with Max, but FM heard me whispering this time and said “No Way”!chocolate labrador retriever mixI had a great time hiking and swimming again, and I got to see my furry friend Molly again.  This time that we were there, I jumped right up on to this great big rock FM and FD call Mt. Hummingbird.  They were really impressed that I got up there in one leap!  I had a great view of the lake from up there.  FM said I looked just like Simba (whoever that is!)chocolate labrador retriever mixI really love being outside in NH because it’s not so hot and humid there.  All that outside time really wears me out, so when we got back to PA, I was ready for a nap!  I’ll check back in again soon!chocolate labrador retriever mix

August 19, 2022

Hello!  Sorry for the delay but I’ve been really busy!chocolate labrador retriever mixFoster Mom and Dad have been taking me to class every Tuesday and Saturday to keep working on all the things  I learned at camp.  FM was super impressed my last class.  The instructor had all of us trainees (there was about 15 of us) lined up in the middle of the road and one by one each of us and our people had to zig zag in between each other all the way down the line.  While I was waiting for my turn, all I had to do was just lay down next to where foster mom was standing. chocolate labrador retriever mixFoster Mom kept on calling me a good boy, and giving me treats while all I had to do was watch the other guys walk by, Wow was that easy!  I was 3rd from the last to go, and everyone started clumping closer together so me and FM didn’t have a lot of room to do our zigging and zagging.  Foster Dad was watching but totally forgot to get a video!  They both said that they were so proud of how I just did my zigging and zagging, and took my treats while I was listening to FM about sticking close and heeling while we walked down the line.  I think I did the best out of everyone!!chocolate labrador retriever mixWe went up to the cottage again in NH and this time, my foster siblings came with us!  It was so much fun.

I definitely liked NH better than hot and humid PA especially since there’s that big pond to cool off in!  I had a lot of fun playing with a big red ball that my foster brother said is really for horses.  I don’t think horses have as much fun as I do though!

My other favorite things to do were to play fetch in the water, and go duck bobbing, it makes foster mom laugh every time I blew bubbles out of my nose.

I got really tired after playing all day in the water and hiking on the trail around the lake so I also liked to nap on the porch or dry of in the sun chair.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixThey had this big floating thing that made a lot of noise this time we were here.  I watch FM from the dock when she took my foster siblings out.  FD said they were going tubing but I thought FM was going past the dock way too fast and I let her know.  FD said it was okay so I just watched them go around and around after that.  Later, FD wanted to take me out on the boat. FM promised she’d go slow.  It was actually really fun, and I saw lots of new things all around the lake.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixMy foster brother Max liked to go frog and salamander hunting with me.

Max also introduced me to his friend Molly!  I really liked her!  We went for walks together, and hunted for frogs, and salamanders with all the kids that came to visit.

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We also went to this fun thing called a family reunion.  I saw lots of new things.  I met my foster cousins too, some were furry like me, some had feathers, and some were fun to play ball with.chocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixMy two furry foster cousins loved to play just like me!  We had a lot of fun together.

chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixI’m glad I got to meet them this time.  They even let me use their little blue puddle!chocolate labrador retriever mixWell, that’s all for now!  Talk to you all soon…chocolate labrador retriever mix

July 22, 2022

I know, I know, I haven’t told you what’s been going on for a while.  Foster Mom and Dad were doing some traveling and had me go to this fun place called K9 Basics.  I learned so much in 3 weeks, and met a lot of really cool friends. chocolate labrador retriever mixWhen foster Mom and Dad, and my foster sister got there, I showed them everything that I learned and the trainer taught them all the new words that I learned.  FM thought she taught me a lot but she was so impressed with what I’d learned there.  She says she’s going to get video of me real soon to show off how good I am with all my new words!  I know “Place, Heel, Sit, Down, Quiet, Come, Off, and Break.”  I like break the best because that’s when I get to play!chocolate labrador retriever mixI was so happy when I got in the car to go back to my foster home.  My foster sister loved getting snuggles from me.chocolate labrador retriever mixAfter being away for so long, I couldn’t wait to hop in my nice soft bed and take a nap!  I was so happy to get back to my foster home. FM said I was smiling in my sleep.chocolate labrador retriever mixI can’t believe how hot it’s been this week!  FM and FD said that we’d be going back to the lake soon but for right now I had to cool off in this tiny purple puddle.  I don’t really mind as long as the water is cool.  I get so hot playing fetch.

Well that’s all for now, it’s time for me to play!  FM promised that she will get those videos of me.  I can’t wait to show you what I can do!chocolate labrador retriever mix

June 19, 2022

This is Sammy reporting back in to fill you in on what’s been happening around here.chocolate labrador retriever mixNow that the weather is getting hot, FM has been taking me for walks earlier in the morning, and after dinner when it is cooler.  I hate going for walks when it’s really hot!  When it’s hot, I just head straight for a shady spot under a tree, and plop right down, and try my best to make FM take a break.  FM lets me cool off for a bit but then says we have to keep going.  I make her cut the walks short when I think it’s too hot!  Thankfully, she gives me a bowl full of water and ice when we get home. I’m glad that we go out now in the morning when it’s cooler. My foster brothers also like the shade just like me and they know where all the coolest spots are!chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixWe’ve gone back up to the cottage in NH a couple of times.  FM and FD say I’m great in the car.  I don’t mind the long ride, sometimes I look out the big window in front and the rest of the time I catch up on my sleep.

chocolate labrador retriever mixI love it there now that all the pesky black flies are gone.  We can stay outside all day and it’s cooler there then in PA.  I love going for walks on the trail around the lake especially since FM takes me on the long leash.  There’s so much to smell.  My favorite part is jumping in the lake to cool off after we get back from the walk, bobbing for sticks,  oh and hunting for chipmunks!chocolate labrador retriever mix

The dock is great to hang out on after a swim.  FM and FD just set up the lounge chairs.  I was hanging out with FD to keep him company, but I had more space on my own chair to sunbathe and dry out.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixMe and FD like to sit on the couch on the screen porch together and watch the hummingbirds at the feeder.  FM always laughs and says we look like twins. chocolate labrador retriever mix The porch is great for watching what’s going on out in the lake.  Those noisy boats always get my attention but FM says I’m doing better at not barking at them anymore.chocolate labrador retriever mix

I’m starting to get used to seeing people out my favorite window too.  FM and FD have been teaching me “quiet.”  They said it’s okay to let them know that someone is out there but when they say “quiet,” I should know that they saw the person, and I don’t need to bark anymore.  Sometimes, it’s hard to remember, especially when I see dogs or deer going by, but hey, isn’t that my job!

My foster sister is back from college, and I really like playing with her.  FM says that sometimes I get too pushy with her when she’s all done playing.  FM says that I need to learn that I’m not the boss of the house, and people can’t always do what I want.  She says I need to learn that about other dogs too.  I don’t understand why everyone doesn’t just do what I want all the time…  FM says I’ve learned a lot here, but I still need to work on not being so bossy.chocolate labrador retriever mix

Even though FM says I’m sometimes bossy, she also says that she loves how I like to keep her, and everyone else company, especially when we are sitting outside on the patio. chocolate labrador retriever mixFD thought it was great when I pretended to be a parrot.  I really got everyone laughing.chocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixFM said she likes it better when I just sit next to her.  I really do love being around my people and just hanging out.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix

May 25, 2022

Hello!  Sammy here checking in.  I just wanted to let you know what I’ve been doing over the last few weeks.

Not much new going on here in PA.  I hang out with Foster Dad when he’s working in his office. FD’s great especially since I’ve trained him to give me a bite of his granola and yogurt in the morning, and a lick of his plate at lunch. FM says he shouldn’t but he can’t help it when I give him that look.chocolate labrador retriever mixI’ve been going on my walks with FM, and Jet and Max but now that it’s getting warmer, I don’t like to stay out as long and like resting in the cool grass under the trees.  I’d rather just hang out in the yard, and look for those pesky squirrels but FM says we can’t stay out there all day (which I’d love to do) because she has work to do. There have been lots of deer, and now they have some really tiny ones too.  They can’t run as fast so foster mom has been keeping me on leash because she thinks I might catch one!  There has also been more fox slinking around out back.  I always let FM know they are there with a few barks, and I really ring that bell too.  It always gets her attention.  FM says we’ve been seeing a lot of animals out back since because of my bell ringing.  She never knew we had such a variety out there, deer, fox, squirrel, skunk, mink, geese and turkey!  I caught sight of them all trespassing, and let her knowchocolate labrador retriever mixA few weeks ago, Foster Mom and Dad told me that we were going to a place called the cottage because they had to get some work done and open it up.  They said that we were going to go on a long drive to get there.  The ride was long, and boring.  I spent my time sleeping and looking out of the front window.  FM’s arm was a comfy spot to sleep on.  I dozed off a couple of times while I was watching things go by out the front window. FM said I was a great passenger for the ride to NH.chocolate labrador retriever mixWhen we got there, FM and FD took me on a walk around the lake.  Boy was that fun!  There was so much on the trail to sniff.  I really liked walking on the long leash, I could really explore everything.chocolate labrador retriever mix

After the walk FM took me in the lake.  I really surprised her when I jumped right in and starting swimming around.  She yelled to FD to start filming.  It was so fun splashing around and looking for fish, salamanders, and diving for sticks and floating leaves.chocolate labrador retriever mix

Another day, I swam right out to FM on a float and she let me climb up and we floated around for a while.  It was so relaxing until this party boat floated by with some noisy bulldogs.  I jumped back in and swam after them because I thought they want to play and gave FM a ride on the tube.  They were too fast for me so we decided to go back after I had a good swim. After the swim, I found a great spot on the porch to dry off and chew a stick I found in the water. chocolate labrador retriever mixFM said that is my furry foster brother’s favorite spot too.  You get dried off in the sun but can see everything happening on the lake.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixThere sure is a lot to see there for such a quiet place.  My favorite thing to sniff out was the chipmunks.  They were all over the place and had a bunch of tunnels I liked to dig up.  It was fun watching the action from the screened in porch, especially when all those pesky bugs started coming out!

chocolate labrador retriever mixThere’s so many different birds to watch when I’m on the porch.  I saw hummingbirds, woodpeckers, and robins. chocolate labrador retriever mixFM said there are loons too but I only saw a wooden one.  They sure are weird looking!

I had a great time at the cottage, all the action sure did keep me busy and it really tired me out.  They had a super comfy couch to sleep on in the porch and the one in the family room wasn’t bad either.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix

I was really happy to see my foster brothers when I got back and told them all about my trip.  I think they even missed me a little!

FM and FD took another trip but they said it was too far away for me to go with them so I stayed at Kamp again.  It was so fun to see my friend Virginia.  She took me out in the yard to play, and let me meet Brookline foster, Buster.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixIt was fun at Kamp but I was so happy to jump in the car with my two human foster sisters when they came to pick me up.chocolate labrador retriever mixI haven’t seen one of my foster sister’s in a while because she’s been somewhere called College.  I haven’t seen her in a long time but I’m really glad she’s back!  She got me some new toys, and like to play with me.  We play fetch and tug.  I bring her toys when she looks bored, and I have fun playing with her.

She really nice and will even hold my chew toys and bones and antlers for me so I can get just the right angle to chew them. chocolate labrador retriever mixFM told me that we are going back to the cottage soon with Jet and Max so I’ll update again after we come back!

April 25, 2022chocolate labrador retriever mix

Sammy is still waiting patiently for his forever home.  He is a very loyal, and loves to join his people in whatever they are doing.  He likes to hang out on the bed when I fold laundry, perch on the counter stool when we drink our morning coffee, and snuggle on the couch when we are just hanging out watching T.V. chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix

We discovered that on top of being a huge fan of ice cubes, he also loves an occasional olive.  Sammy takes treats very gently!

Sammy loves spending time outside, and would do best with a fenced yard so that he can just hang out sunbathing and looking for wildlife.  He’s a great companion when I am gardening, and will gladly help pull out weeds and dig some holes.

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April 11, 2022

chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy continues to do well in our home, and is progressing nicely.  I am happy to report that Sammy has graduated to a regular leash on his walks!!  When we first got him, I had to use a chain leash because he would grab and pull at a regular nylon leash.  Those days are now over, and Sammy walks very nicely with a regular leash.  Good boy Sammy!!

Sammy and I also met with a K9 trainer.  He showed me what I need to work on with Sammy this week to keep his focus on me when we are on walks.  We started on the inside aka no distractions training this weekend to teach him “watch,” and I was really impressed with how he kept a loose leash and would look me in the eye when we were on our walk.  I am confident that we are going to be able to walk past another dog on leash without Sammy becoming over excited in no time.chocolate labrador retriever mixWe are working on solidifying his “come” when out in the yard.  He is back on the long leash temporarily because now that the days are getting nicer, he wants to stay outside, and I was having a hard time rounding him up to go back inside when it was time.  I was getting some good exercise trying to wrangle a leash on him since he is not one to be tricked.  A big bowl of ice worked when he was hot!chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix

Sammy was happy to get a a new squirrel puzzle.  He loves stuffies but unfortunately two of the three squirrels didn’t stay together long.  LOL!  I do restuff the “skins” with squeaky balls, and he enjoys the challenge of getting the furry shell off the squeakers again.

 

 

chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is still waiting to find the right adopters.  An active adopter who will take on a confident leadership role will be rewarded with a loyal, loving, independent, and entertaining young dog. chocolate labrador retriever mix

March 17, 2022

chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is enjoying his freedom on our 5 acres since we firmly established his boundaries with the Invisible fence system. Outside, he happily sniffs around the yard looking for deer, squirrels, voles, and birds or watching the activity over in the neighbor’s yard or in the neighborhood common area that borders our property.  He also likes to play fetch, tug and keep away with me.

He lets me know when he wants to play fetch by bringing a toy over.  He’ll get out a lot of energy by playing fetch but also with exploring.  Some days, he prefers to have a good play session in the yard over the short walks I used to do prior to fence training but I make sure he takes at least one 2-3 mile walk a day usually first thing in the morning. Sammy especially loves sniffing through the grassy perennials at the entrance of our neighborhood, and taking a break in them on every walk.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixQuiet, sensory walks where he gets to sniff, and explore who or what has also been passing through the area but where he doesn’t see a lot of other people, dogs, and noisy trucks are the most rewarding for Sammy.  Small, controlled long distance exposures to other dogs out on walks is really helping with his on leash reactivity.  It is still a work in progress but he is advancing with very patient exposure. He does enjoy the company of our 10 year old resident labs and has really learned a lot from them over the last 4 months with us.

chocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixSammy can be an independent thinker and decides himself if he wants to do what you ask or not.  As an example, yesterday, when the weather was warm and sunny, I leashed him up and we headed out for a walk with Max and Jet.  As soon as we stepped foot on to the back steps, Sammy laid down.  He is not a fan of warm weather afternoon walks and he was letting me know that he thought it was too hot for a walk. I switched him over to his Invisible fence collar, and he popped up and was ready to play some fetch, and sniff around the yard. His favorite fetch toy is a ball on a rope because in between throws,  he likes to have a game of tug.

Sammy is an energetic tugger, and uses lots of maneuvers to win – think, thrashing shark on a hook!  LOL.  We usually have turns “winning.”  He’s usually a good sport when I “win” and listens to “wait” before I toss it for him again.  If I don’t give the “wait” cue, he really enjoys chasing the ball around in a circle, and leaping at least  4 ft in the air to try and get it.

Sammy prefers to spend a lot of his time outside roaming around the yard regardless of the temperature, unless it’s raining then he’s business only and straight back inside.  Yesterday, Sammy occupied himself in the yard while I started to clean up my perennial beds.  On occasion, he came over to see if there were any good sticks he could help clear out, or mulch that needed to be tossed.  Sammy does enjoy digging so he’d be a great help when it comes to planting. chocolate labrador retriever mixAlthough, Sammy is independent and doesn’t need constant companionship, he is loyal so he always keeps me within view while we are outside, and tags along when I move to different areas of the yard. After a good deer chase, he always comes running back over to me because he gets praise and a kibble for staying within his boundary.

Sammy has been doing great when it comes to communicating his needs.  The doorbell has become his mode of expressing when he needs our attention.  He will ring it mostly when he wants to go out to play, or go to the bathroom.   Sammy is very intelligent and inquisitive but not necessarily “high” energy but is his best self when he has an alternate outlet for his “busy” energy with physical, mental or chewing/licking activities through out the day.

Prior to him discovering the bell, he would become rambunctious and mouthy when he was trying to communicate something to me like he was bored, and wanted me to play or take him out or just needed something to chew.  Sammy would probably love to have a job or train for scent work trials.  He loves having his nose to the ground.chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy still has a few things that he needs to work on but has progressed to the point where he is ready to find the right furever home that can meet his continuing training and activity needs.  Sammy would do best in a home with a confident, experienced owner with no children who can take charge and is home more often than not.  A large piece of fenced (invisible/physical) property that is in a quiet, low activity area is needed so Sammy can roam and explore the yard at his leisure which would help burn off both physical and mental energy.chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is loving, funny, entertaining and playful but is independent, has a strong willed mind of his own, and doesn’t necessarily have a high drive to please, and can be slow to trust a person’s intentions.  He needs someone that will prove to him, through time and absolute consistency, and positive reinforcement training, that you mean what you say so he will respect and love you or he will outsmart you and take advantage of you.  chocolate labrador retriever mixHe can be a challenge because he has the inclination to use his intelligence in clever ways, and he absolutely knows when you are trying to trick him and doesn’t fall for it, except maybe when it comes to ice or American cheese!  🙂 He is definitely food motivated which makes training easier.  Sammy’s need for mental stimulation is as equal as his need for physical exercise.  Both activities help him settle, take a good nap and be the best companion through out the day.  Sammy is a great dog that deserves to find just the right forever home so he can live a long, happy and carefree life full of exploration of the outdoors and loving his people.

March 3, 2022

Hello!  This is Sammy again reporting in.  I’ve been keeping my foster family busy with this new trick that I learned.  I noticed that every time I bumped into this round thing on the door, a bell rang, and FM said, yes, gave me a treat, and we went outside! Now when I want to go outside, I really start banging on that thing, and someone usually comes to see what’s going on.  FM thinks it’s funny when I start banging on it when I see the deer.  She usually lets me chase them off because she hates when they come in the yard and poop because my foster brothers like to eat it.  I can’t lie….so do I!  Anyway, like I said she doesn’t mind because I stay in my yard, and they disappear back into the woods.  She says I’m a great help, and maybe those pesky deers won’t eat all of her perennials.

I’m really happy that I don’t have to wear a leash out in the yard anymore!  I love playing fetch with FM in the yard.  She usually takes me out to play after breakfast, and after lunch, and later in the afternoon for about 30 minutes.  It’s so fun, and I run my fastest to get the ball.  Usually,  I want to stay out longer but FM gets me to come in by getting me some ice cubes.  I really love ice cubes!

In the afternoon, I have a favorite perch that I like to sit in.  I love the nice afternoon sun,  and  watching the birds on the feeder and looking for the dog walkers that start coming out around 3pm.  I’ve been letting FM know when I see Otto, the basset hound out there by ringing that bell.  She says that I’m so smart but never lets me out, but she does give me a treat when I go back to my perch to wait for him to walk by again on the way home!chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixWhen FM is cooking dinner, I found this great spot under the oven.  There’s all this warm air that blows out!  It’s the perfect place to take a nap when it’s chilly outside. chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixAfter dinner, we always relax in the family room.  Sometimes, FD likes to put on lots of different youtube videos.  Usually, he plays the same music videos from the 70’s and 80’s, those always make me fall asleep. chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixOther times, he puts on these great videos for me and my foster brothers.  FD likes the howling videos the most.  It always gets him laughing when my foster brothers join in, I’m just wondering out what all the noise is about!

Well, that’s all for this update! Thanks for checking in..chocolate labrador retriever mix

February 16, 2022

Handsome boy Sammy has been doing great since his last update.  We met with the trainer to continue work on walking on a leash past another walking dog.  Boiled chicken, pork and beef has been working best to keep his nose to the ground and keep him distracted from focusing on the other dog, and I am seeing really good progress.  Now when he sees a dog coming, he looks at me as if to say, “okay I’m ready for the meat!”  This guy is one smart cookie.  We’ve been getting closer to other walking dogs but I’m still keeping at a distance where he doesn’t focus too long on the other dog, and can pay attention to sniffing.  There’s lots of walkers in my neighborhood so we practice ALOT!chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy’s communication style has finally turned the corner.  Instead of jumping and being mouthy when he’s trying to get my attention, he has learned that sitting and giving a quick bark does the trick.  I tried to catch him on video “talking” to me but he clammed up as soon as I got the phone out.  Reminds me of my kids, LOL!

Sammy has been doing great on the Invisible Fence too.  He graduated from being attached to the 50ft leash while outside, and now is free from a tether which he absolutely loves!  The big test was dropping the leash when there was deer just on the other side of the boundary.  I held my breath when he took off full speed, and gave a big exhale when he stopped dead right before his line.  I was so proud. We had vultures visit the other day, and Sammy did a great job respecting the boundary while trying to shoo them away!

Sammy enjoys playing fetch outside in any kind of weather, and in the last 12 days we’ve had warm, snowy, and absolutely frigid.  He loves being outside in all conditions!

Sammy still enjoys his perch in the front room on the arm of the couch to watch for walkers, birds and squirrels but he decided the couch in the family room might be ideal for keeping a watch for the deer in the backyard.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy still remains the king of cute poses, and has a knack at sleeping in a variety of positions alone, with the resident dogs, and with people.

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February 4, 2022

Hello!  This is Sammy reporting in.  My foster Mom said I could let you all know what’s been going on since her last update.chocolate labrador retriever mixFoster Mom and Dad decided they were going to go on a weekend trip to someplace warm, and told me that I was going to get to go to Kamp for five days.  I was a little bit skeptical at first because I love my daily routine of walks, playtime, and getting fun puzzles to solve but they assured me I’d have a great time.  And guess what?  I did and I got to do all that fun stuff there too!chocolate labrador retriever mixI met this nice lady, Virginia who took me on walks, and I got to see all the other dogs playing out in this great fenced play area!  She told me we were practicing to see how nicely I could walk by.  I guess I did very well because we walked back and forth by them for about 5 minutes, and I didn’t once bark or react and I just kept sniffing for the treats I would find on the ground.  I also got to run around in the big fenced yard and Oh boy was that fun!chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixFoster Mom checked in to see how I was doing each day.  When she got home she said she’d love for me to go to a place called the beach.  She said since I love going in the water, I’d probably love chasing after all those waves.  I hope my new family will take me there one day.  It looks so fun!chocolate labrador retriever mixThe best thing that happened while I was in Kamp was that it snowed!  I love the snow and ice.  I love jumping, and running, and rolling in it.  I especially love to eat it!  FM and FD know that ice is one of my favorite treats.  It was so fun catching little bits of snow in my mouth!chocolate labrador retriever mixI also had a lot of fun with the Kamp counselors.  They took me out in the yard everyday, and we played with balls.  I was so happy just running, and playing there.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixWhen I got home, I was excited to see my foster family again.  I got to play ball.  FM has been teaching me to “give” her the ball, and she told me that I am getting really good at giving it back to her nicely!

We also got this fun new snuffle mat from a nice lady in our rescue.  She told FM that they are available on the Brookline Etsy store.  I hope some of you get one because I give them a 10 for fun!  Boy, do I love to work with my nose and find that kibble.  FM says that the puzzles and food games are good for me because I am so smart and love to investigate, I definitely think she’s got that right.  FM showed me the video of the snuffle mat and I can see why they call it a snuffle mat! I didn’t know I was sniffing that hard.

Well, that’s all I can think to tell you now, but I hope FM let’s me write another update again!

 

January 23, 2022

chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy has been keeping busy and learning some new things since we last checked in.  We got another fun toy to keep him busy, the Kong Wobbler.  He been figuring out how to roll it around to get the kibble out.  I also put in a few high value treats to keep him interested.  When Sammy first tried it, he figured it out pretty quickly but also tries to use his charms to get us to tip some out for him.  Check out the nice sit, and look he gives me to try and get me to lend a hand!  Max, my resident dog is always game to follow Sammy around to find the pieces that Sammy misses, and to take over the rolling job when Sammy has had enough!

We have been taking more trips the our local state park on the weekends to keep exposing Sammy to other dogs on leash.  Our passes are still not close proximity but he is getting better at keeping his nose to the ground to look for the high value treats that I am tossing instead of being focused on the other dog.  We are making little steps but we are making positive progress.chocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixAfter his usual 3mi morning walk, Sammy is ready to relax.  Sammy usually hops right into the dog bed along side my resident dog, Max, but he also enjoys the couch that he perches on to look out the window for a nice nap in the sunshine.

chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is still learning a lot of good dog behavior from my resident labs.  He can usually be found hanging out where ever they are.  When I cook dinner, Jet and Sammy like to hang out where the warm air blows out from the oven.  I think they also might be hoping for a stray piece of food to drop!  🙂

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January 11, 2022

Sammy has had a fun few weeks with Christmas and the recent snowfall.  chocolate labrador retriever mixSanta Claus was really good to Sammy to reward him for all his hard work over the last couple of months.  Sammy got some puzzle toys which he really loves trying to figure out. He got the easy, and medium puzzle in no time.  Below is Sammy trying to figure out the hard puzzle.  He’s still working on the best way to pull out the drawers. 🙂

My mom got him a stuffy squeaky turtle that is meant to be ripped apart to find another toy inside.  Sammy loves squeaky stuffed animals, and was carrying them around, tossing and squeaking them for most of the day, and took a nap with them after a lot of playing. chocolate labrador retriever mixAfter his nap, he was ready to get the squeaker out of the middle like he does with every other stuffed toy!  To his surprise, there was another fun squeaky ball inside of the turtle.

Sammy is great at entertaining himself especially if you give him a toy that’s been hiding in the toy box for a few weeks.  He has a great time kicking the noise ball around like a soccer ball, and trying his hardest to get his mouth around it so he can carry it away.

His favorite toy is a squeaky ball rope toy.  It’s his go to toy when he’s ready to play fetch.  When we come in the door, we have taught him to direct his excitement to the toy box by the door, and he usually finds this toy and brings it to the person coming home.  He is always making us laugh when he gets a foot or two in the loops and comes bounding back all caught up and bucking like a Bronco.  We think he does it on purpose as part of his game with the toy.

Sammy was really excited the other morning to wake up to snow.  He was plowing his nose through it, and licking it up.  He had a great time playing chase with Jet and Max in the new powdery snow.  My guys were soaked at the end of the play session but Sammy’s fur seems made for the snow.  No snow stuck to him and he easyily shook it off after taking a nice roll in it.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix

Sammy is also quite the scent dog, and was following all the critters trails in the snow.  Even though he was hot on the trail of something interesting, I was really proud of him when he stopped at his electric fence boundary.  He really enjoyed searching out the scent under the snow!

When Sammy was outside alone, he entertained himself by playing hide and seek with his ball in the snow.

Since the snow is starting to melt and turning into ice balls, Sammy has been in heaven.  He absolutely loves ice cubes and comes running when he hears someone getting ice for a drink.  I’ve even used an ice cube as a high value treat for Sammy when I need him to drop something he should have like a sock or a scarf.  Every time we go out on a walk, Sammy treats himself to a few ice balls from the grass.

Sammy is working hard on his training, and is getting better at his impulse control.  We are always working on drop it, and leave it, as these are two important commands for both safety and fun.  When Sammy arrived, he did a lot of resource guarding and would snatch a toy off the floor when we were playing fetch.  Sammy now actually brings bones to us to hold for him, and can eat right next to my resident dogs.chocolate labrador retriever mixHe now understands that we will not play with him until he drops the ball near us, and sits down.  He really likes playing with people and getting good behavior treats so he is pretty consistently doing well with both.

We have been watching a lot of training videos lately to find the best ways to help Sammy with his impulse control and on leash dog reactivity. chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is very interested in learning from the experts, and enjoys watching the other dogs on T.V. and is picking up some tips too!

Sammy continues to enjoy looking out the window, and can usually be found in this spot mid afternoon to watch for the walkers, or waiting for me when I go out on an errand.chocolate labrador retriever mix

Sammy continues to enjoy his snuggle time with my daughter after she gets home from a hard day of counseling in a Philly SD.

chocolate labrador retriever mixHe is starting to give out lots of kisses and snuggles to the whole family, and is a very good boy when it comes to putting on his leash to go out.

chocolate labrador retriever mixWe are still working on teaching him alternative communication methods as he can become over excited, and mouthy when he is trying to tell you that he needs or wants something or when he is trying to get your attention to play.  Although this is still a work in progress, he has come very far!  Sammy thrives on routine, and is a happy boy with predictability.  He would do great in a calm, quite home with a predictable environment.chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is also the king of funny poses.  I wonder how some of these positions are actually comfortable!chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix

 

 

 

 

 

December 20, 2021

Sammy is continuing to work hard on his good doggie behaviors.  He is showing great improvement, and learning how to control his impulses.chocolate labrador retriever mixHe is doing so much better getting his leash on, and really looks forward to his walks, and time in the yard.  I have been able to take all three dogs on our walk.  He has been doing great with the invisible fence.  I am still keeping him on a long leash while in the yard.  We have lots of deer, and squirrels, and walkers so I have had many opportunities to test his reliability with respecting the flag boundaries.  So far so good.  He stops before the flags, and jumps back into the “safe” zone if he gets close enough for the warning beep.chocolate labrador retriever mixBefore all the Christmas decorations were put out, we left Sammy out in the house while we were out a few times for 1-2 hours.  He did great.  My husband got me a Furbo for my birthday, so we were able to check in on him while we were out, and shoot him some kibble.  The furbo is great.  It sends you notifications when there is activity, barking, howling, running, etc and you can see what is going on live, and talk to your dog and send them kibble treats.  At the end of the day, it will give you an activity snapshot.  They are hilarious!

Sammy does enjoy a good snuggle, and gives gentle kisses. chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixHe learns a lot from my resident dogs, and watches what they are doing and follows along.  Sammy loves his toys and keeps us all entertained with the joy that he gets from them.

I also can’t get enough pictures of him with his “Froggy Leg” pose.  He sits like this all the time.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixHe still continues to enjoy stuffed bones, and his antler chew (especially while stretched out on the guest bedroom bed! 🙂 )

chocolate labrador retriever mixWe are still working on his excitability with dogs when he is on leash.  We are still staying at a distance from other dogs on leash to reinforce staying in control, to prevent reinforcing the over excitement.  He’s a smart boy so I know we will eventually be able to start having closer passes.  We are taking it slow so we have positive experiences on our walks, and don’t have any learning setbacks.

Sammy is a great boy, and loves to play with us and go for walks.  He is easy to have in the house, and we enjoy having him around.

December 1, 2021

Sammy has had a very busy few weeks.  We are still working on his training for stranger and dog reactivity and continue to see progress.chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy has really gotten used to his daily schedule.  He is excited for his long walk in the morning, and will entertain himself through the day.  He gets a couple sniff sessions out in the yard, and likes to lay in the sunshine.  I just had Invisible Fence flags installed in the yard to start training him to the electric fence.  If all goes well, he should be able to have some fun ball sessions outside in the yard soon.  He loves to be outside and explore so having a fenced yard would give him the freedom to run and explore on his own. Sammy decided that he wanted a bedroom of his own, and picked our walk in closet on his own.  He chooses to sleep in there on his dog bed every night.  Each morning, he hops into our bed around 5:30-6am, and snuggles up until the alarm goes off so he can get his morning kisses and scratches.  I guess my husband’s snoring must have bothered his beauty sleep….  LOL. Sammy isn’t picky about where he sleeps.  He even likes to snuggle up in his previous puppy bed or on my foot.chocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixI am happy to report that on walks Sammy can now walk by strangers easily and checks in with me as we are passing.  He still gets excited when he sees other dogs walking towards him, but can walk past yards when dogs are out without any issues.  If I see a dog coming ahead, I move Sammy onto the grass until he is at a distance where he can sit and watch the other dog pass by without any pulling or barking.  He has been doing really well with this, and is listening to correction. chocolate labrador retriever mixHe’s been doing so well in the neighborhood that we felt he was ready for a Tyler Park outing.  At the park, he easily passed by lots of people and did okay with correction when he saw other dogs approaching.  Each time, we moved off the path until he was at a comfortable distance to sit and watch them go by without any pulling or barking.  He was very interested in the two horses that we passed but only looked and didn’t bark.  I’m really proud of Sammy and how much he has progressed!  I’m hoping to get him into a training class shortly to continue to work on his dog to dog interactions.chocolate labrador retriever mixOver Thanksgiving, we had a lot of people at our home so we had many opportunities to expose him to strangers. Two of my college aged kids came home for break, my brother and his wife came in from Oregon on the same day and stayed with us for 10 days, my sister in-law and brother in-law came for a visit, and I had a friend’s family (8 people of all sizes and ages) over for our annual flag football game, Thanksgiving morning, and my Mom and Dad came for Thanksgiving dinner.  Sammy met everyone, and did well meeting everyone.  Sammy would occasionally bark at my brother in the house.  We figured out, he only did it when my brother was wearing a winter hat/sunglasses/glasses inside, and made a quick gesture towards Sammy.  He would also bark when he was carrying a glass with ice in it.  Sammy really likes ice, and I think he thought he could get it when he barked at him for it.  Every time, it happened, we corrected him, and he would be easily redirected to a toy.  The good news is that due to all the guests, the vacuum was running a lot so he is now an expert at ignoring it!

Sammy is learning to trust to people.  The more he meets people of all different shapes and sizes, the more he will learn how to meet new people in his home appropriately.Sammy continues to do well with my resident dogs.  My resident dogs have even started to let him sleep along side them on the floor and in the giant dog bed with Max.chocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixOver Thanksgiving break, I babysat Sammy’s sister, and my former foster, Penny.  They had a blast together.  Sammy is usually pretty quiet, and calm in the house but when Penny came to visit there was always activity going on.

chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy on occasion would become too excited, after Penny was done playing but he mostly listened to Penny’s corrections.  On the occasions that he decided he wanted to keep playing after Penny told him no, we could redirect him with correction, and he would go to his bed for kibble.  They loved playing chase outside and tug with each other inside, and Sammy would bring a ball over to Penny to try to initiate play.

They played “I want, what you’ve got” with balls, toys and chews but would only take something when the other one dropped it.  I was impressed with their manners.  They were always watching what the other one was doing, sibling rivalry!  LOL.  It was fun to celebrate their first Birthday together on November 26!chocolate labrador retriever mix

Sammy really loved all his new squeakers.

Sammy really enjoyed having Penny here and they took a lot of naps from all their playing, and were still ready for bed at the end of the day!chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixNora, Sammy and Penny’s Mom also stopped in one day for a visit.  We had each of them reunite individually with their Mom.  On a short leash, Sammy was over excited but when we let them play together on a long leash, he did much better one on one.

chocolate labrador retriever mixDuring outdoor play, Sammy tends to get more over excited and it is harder for him to listen to correction and redirection.  As he learns self control, and leave it better, I think Sammy would love to play chase outside with a large, energetic and easy going friend.

We have tried to introduce Sammy to my mom’s little terrier mix two times but I think he still sees her as a pesky squirrel.  Outside on a walk, he can walk parallel with her but gets over excited if he gets within sniffing distance.chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is a sweet boy who loves to play fetch, and get butt and belly scratches and kisses.  He loves his people, and is always super excited to see them after they have been out.  He is also independent, and trustworthy inside.  Sammy is working on his self control with strangers and dogs, and soon will be the best boy ever!chocolate labrador retriever mix

November 15, 2021

chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy continues to work hard on his manners here.  He had been doing a little bit of counter surfing when there were food items on the counter, but he does listen to correction and jumps down, and is getting much better with his self control.  I can now walk away from food items on the counter and he sits like a good boy.  I was getting his lick pad ready, and walked away to test him out and he passed with flying colors!

This weekend was busy for Sammy.  On Saturday, he met several new people.  He came outside with me to meet The Fence Guys contractor that came to give me an estimate.  The contractor loves dogs so was comfortable with me working on training with Sammy while he was there.  Sammy was pulling to go over to him but I kept Sammy at a distance until he was walking nicely around the yard  while the contractor was using his measuring wheel.  By the time he was done, Sammy was totally comfortable with him and walked up to him nicely, sniffed him and then walked nicely beside him back to his car.chocolate labrador retriever mix chocolate labrador retriever mixAfter that appointment, we hopped in the car and headed to Philly to meet another volunteer to pick up some things for the Rescue.  Sammy was a lot more apprehensive in the strange environment meeting new people.  He did take treats but was never quite comfortable with them.  I think all the excitement wore him out and he fell asleep sitting up on the ride back home.chocolate labrador retriever mixOn Sunday, Penny, Sammy’s sister, came over for a quick playdate.  I think they recognized each other right away as neither one barked when they saw each other and their tails were non stop wagging.  As babies, Penny and Sammy were always together.  You could always find them snuggled up together sleeping or playing with each other.

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They had so much fun playing and their energy levels and play styles matched perfectly.  Sammy listened to Penny’s cues, and by the end Sammy was the one who was completely worn out!  It was great to see them having so much fun! They both had big smiles on their faces.

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Sammy did a good job meeting Penny’s adoptive mom, and sister.  He walked right up to them, and wasn’t worried about them at all.  He just gave them a sniff, and walked away to play with Penny.  Penny must have let him know they were great! After Penny left, Sammy was ready for a nap!chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is settling in and learning the rules and the house routines.  He will hang out with me in the office, and entertain himself with chew toys, and make him self comfortable on his bed.  Sammy is great at entertaining himself.

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I’m really proud of this handsome boy.  He really has come a long way quite quickly. chocolate labrador retriever mix

 

November 10, 2021

Sammy has been in my foster care for a week.  I am seeing progress with Sammy.  Everyday, his reaction out on walks to strangers is reducing.  Sunday, he passed by a someone raking without any concerns, and today we did a close pass by a landscaper that was standing next to his truck on the street, and he walked by easily, checking in with me for kibble.  We also saw a neighbor that he hasn’t met.  While she was standing, talking to me, we approached and he accepted pets and plopped on his back on her feet.  He was excited and was jumpy but it was a happy jump.  We finished our walk together, and Sammy trotted happily along next to her. Sammy tends to get most excited when people are walking towards him on the road.  When I see him getting excited, we move away until I can get him to listen to sit, and he is not pulling towards them.  He is a work in progress, but progress is happening!

Monday, I had my mom come and visit him.  He did initially bark at her sitting in car with the window down but he was not over the top or escalating so I was able to redirect him to sit, and he stopped barking.  She tossed kibble out the window, then he approached her to get kibble from her hand.  She was able to get out of the car and walk into our house without any issues and Sammy trotted next to her on the way in. Inside, he was more than happy to sit by her, and listened to her commands.  We discovered that he knows “paw.  I never ask for paw because I find that once they know it gets them food, they become annoying with slapping at me.  LOL  He also did a very good down.

 

 

He was a little hesitant to initially get petted but by the end of the quick visit, he was rolling over for belly rubs.

He also did really well on Monday on our afternoon walk.  A little girl scootered up behind us, and he got excited but he didn’t bark and I could redirect him to a sit and then continue on with his walk.  He does get more excited when he sees little people, and will pull towards them  so we are still working on that.  We have plenty of kids, and I walk in the mornings and afternoon when the buses are active so he is getting a lot of exposure to learn impulse control. We also saw a walker with two dogs ahead of us later in the walk.  He got excited and wanted to catch up, and was pulling but he listened to sit, so we could try good walking again.  We had to repeat several times but he was able to stay in control, and did not escalate in his excitement. The landscapers came and Sammy watched them out the window without barking.

Tuesday, we were out in the yard and my neighbor was in his driveway.  Although Sammy has never met him or seen him, Sammy sat on our property line and watched him, and didn’t bark even though he was on a bike.  He did pull to see where he was going but I could easily redirect him.

 

 

We are working on his reactivity to vacuums.  He seems to see the vacuum as a plaything, and was barking at it and trying to pounce on it and grab it.  I’m teaching him to go to his bed when it is out.  He learned quickly today when we worked on it.

 

I’m really happy with the progress he is making, and think he can transition to a reactivity experienced adoptive home very soon. He would do best as an only dog. He is not a furniture sitter when we are in the LR and prefers to curl up on the dog bed.  He does like sleeping on the end of the bed, and sleeps through from bedtime until morning.  He’s very playful, and loves to play fetch with a ball.  He would do best in a home with patient, and consistent owner who is home to work on training and with only teen or older children that are dog experienced or no children as if you allow him to get over excited, he can be mouthy.  This is something that has significantly decreased over the past week, and with continued training can be trained out. Sammy is enjoying his walks, and he loves to be outside and roll in the grass and lounge in the sunshine.

He settles best and is on his best behavior with 1 long (3mi) walk, and two  (1-2mi) short walks, plus indoor play if an adopter does not have a fenced yard or a long walk and active outdoor play in a fenced yard a few times a day.

November 5, 2021

From what I’ve seen over the last 3 days, Sammy’s unwanted behaviors are a combination of his stubbornness and some fear reactions, and he needs to learn important basic commands through positive reinforcement to help him conquer his fears and redirect his anxiety appropriately.  Since Sammy arrived, I have been taking him on a morning run (3 miles) and an afternoon walk (3 miles).  Exercise really helps Sammy to settle in the house, and he has been great on free roam.chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy came to me an expert at sit, and it is my go to right now to redirect his behaviors when he feels anxious.  Sammy’s lunch is eaten from the stash of kibble in my pocket through the day.  Every minute of the day is an opportunity to reinforce good behaviors with positive reinforcement, ie. kibble.

Sammy is becoming a pro at sitting and staying when we go through doors.  He sits until I go through first.

Through games and playing, Sammy is learning “drop it” and “leave it.”  Kibble works for low value items like toys and he is now doing it without kibble to play, but I’ve had to use bacon for high value items that he doesn’t want to give up. Its a work in progress, but the progress I’ve seen in just 3 days has been amazing.  He’s changed from a grumbly boy who was afraid that you were going to take his toys, and bones to a boy who lets you pet him when he has a high value item, and willingly drops a toy without re-grabbing so you can play a fun game!

These commands are essential to overcome his fear of loosing a high value item, which include non-dog items like sticks, and squeakers that he does chew up and swallow unless you have bacon on hand….  These two commands will also help stop his leash pulling which escalates rapidly into jumping, flopping, flailing and mouthiness if he feels you are leading him somewhere he does not want to go.chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy has progressed rapidly with his stranger/dog reactivity on leash out on runs/walks and in the yard if he sees something pass by.  He is easily redirected by turning and backtracking with him in the opposite direction briefly to regroup/refocus and give him a good walking kibbles before we try to pass again.  Usually on the second try he can walk by and focus on me and the kibble. This morning on our run, he was able to walk by a walker with two dogs that were barking and carrying on by initially back tracking , and redirecting to him to kibble and “good walking” command and doing a second approach to pass them.  His only reaction to the barking on leash dogs was fur bristling!  I was very proud of him. chocolate labrador retriever mixInside, he is doing really well with my two resident dogs, and has been rewarded by leash free indoor time.  He is respecting their space and doesn’t try to initiate play.  He can remain calm and doesn’t get overstimulated during indoor play with me.  My resident dogs don’t play or interact with him so no issues have come up between them. Sammy walks well along side my resident lab.

The leash aversion and pulling is occasionally an issue on walks since his behavior can escalate quickly.  Until he has learned “drop it”, this behavior is difficult to control and de-escalate.  I’ve started utilizing a two leash system.  His short regular leash and a long leash.  When he starts grabbing the leash, I ask him to “sit” and try to redirect back to “good walking.”  If he continues to grab and pull which right now is typical once it starts, then I drop the short leash and walk away from him while holding the long leash.  He doesn’t like being left behind so he walks after me and I treat for good walking and re-grab the short leash.  He doesn’t grab at the leash on the early morning run, and easily redirects, but the leash grabbing increases on the mid afternoon walk and when we are out in the yard.

Sammy is going to get there with patience and perseverance.  He is smart, and is learning quickly.  He loves scratches, belly rubs, playing ball and frisbee, and chewing on bones, and is reliable in the house on free roam.  I think he is going to be the best boy very soon!

November 3, 2021

Sammy has been back with us for almost 24 hrs now and he seems to be settling in already.  Sammy‘s adopters were struggling with stranger reactivity with Sammy, and quite a bit of stubbornness, as well as over the top play/fear aggression with other dogs.
chocolate labrador retriever mixI guess Sammy must have remembered us here because he greeted me, my 26 yo daughter and my husband with a wagging tail and kisses.  It’s amazing and wonderful that he did remember us.  I guess all those weeks of bottle feeding, and 24/7 supervision really do make an unbreakable connection.

When he arrived, I took him straight out for a 3 mile walk.  I did encounter his stubbornness when he wanted to investigate something on our walk and I wanted to keep walking.  He was grabbing at the leash and flopping on the ground making quite a scene.  I switched him out of the front clip harness he came in to a martingale collar, and held the leash out of his reach behind his head.  Once he realized, the game was done, and that he got kibble when he was a good walker, I was able to finish the walk without issue.  He was hesitant when we passed by houses where dogs were out but walked on without too much fuss, again for good walking kibble.
chocolate labrador retriever mixAfter the walk, he met my resident dogs outside and again made quite a fuss about following the rules about leash biting, and pulling, and was very over stimulated.  We put my dogs back inside, and let him sniff around the yard.  After he was settled and was walking nicely, we brought him to my office to decompress and do a little playing off leash.  The office is in an isolated area of the house and I am able to create a two door system to keep everyone separated easily.  chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy responds really well to “sit” and I worked with him throughout the day to sit at the gate and the second entrance door each time we were going to go through it to go out to pee and our before dinner walk. Each time we left, my resident dogs were out of sight.  He picked up sitting and waiting for me to go through the door first quickly.  We kept him separated in the in law suite until after dinner and then did another introduction to the resident labs inside, through the gate while he was on leash.  This time, I was able to have him sit on one side of the gate while my two sat on the other side of the gate.  Everyone stayed pretty calm, and Sammy listened well when I asked him to sit again if he got up to approach the gate.  We called my boys out of that area, and I walked him out on leash, and again everyone sniffed and if Sammy was doing a little too much sniffing, he was asked to sit, and once the sniffing was done he walked away readily with me on leash.  I let him explore the house and check out all the different rooms.  My resident labs kept their distance and let Sammy explore alone.  We settled in the LR, and Sammy occupied his time on his bed with a bone next to me while on leash.  Jet even came over and laid down on the other side of me, and I could keep a leashed Sammy occupied with toys, and lots of scratches, and ICE CUBES!  He absolutely loves ice cubes.
chocolate labrador retriever mixHe slept well through the night in our bedroom.  I took Sammy out separately in the morning from the resident labs, and then brought him back to the office for breakfast.  He ate all his food in the office while it was the resident dogs turn to go out and get served their breakfast.  After breakfast, we did another introduction through the gate, and things went even better than the night before.  When I took him out of the in law suite, he walked right by the resident labs and out to the kitchen to the toys and his dog bed.  He played on leash with some squeaky toys and chewed on bones one his bed while we had our coffee.  After breakfast, I took him out on a 3 mile run.  We did come across another walker with a dog in the distance, and again his stubbornness came out.  He was much too interested in the walker, and he wanted to walk towards the walker but we were headed in another direction.  After some leash grabbing and flopping again, I was able to reposition his leash out of reach, and redirect his attention back to good walking/running.  This episode didn’t last as long as yesterday, so I’m definitely seeing positive progress already.  After his run, I gave him a lick pad in the office while I took my boys on their walk.  When I got back he was sitting in his dog bed.  Good boy Sammy!
chocolate labrador retriever mixHe came out of the office for a bit of socialization, and a pee break.  He saw my neighbors outside, along with their dog.  He gave a bark but he easily redirected to walking around the yard, and didn’t do any leash grabbing.  He headed back into the office, and settled while I did some work around the house.  When I came back in the office, he was on his bed resting, he woke up and did about another 15 minutes on the lick pad for the leftovers from this morning.  After the lick session, he slept soundly for an hour or so while I got some office work done! He is feeling comfortable in the office (actually where he started out his life) and just picked out a toy to bring back to his bed. I’m taking every opportunity to reinforce the good doggie behaviors I want to see.  We played fetch for a bit and he quickly picked up “drop it” for a kibble, and by the end would “drop it” just to get me to toss the toy again.  He is very food motivated for his everyday kibble which make training him much easier.  So far so good.  I think things for Sammy are going really well in such a short time, and his good doggie behavior can only get better.  I can’t wait to see where he is at in a week or two.

January 7, 2021

chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy is now six weeks old and getting big!  He is the second heaviest weighing in at 10.6lbs.  He likes his kibble, and will sometimes over stuff himself at times. The puppies are too big to weigh on the table top weigh scale so now I weigh them on a regular scale while I am holding them.  All the puppies got their dewormer on December 30, and have been doing well.  They get another dose next Wednesday, and will be going for their 8 week vaccinations on January 22.

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Sammy loves his Mama, Nora. When she comes over to the pen, he will jump up to see her and barks and whines until I lift him out for some one on one play time with her. All the other pups want to stop playing with Mama after a few minutes but Sammy will play with her for a long time.  He is quite a scrappy player with his mom, and will bark and paw at her.  He found a nice hiding spot on the entertainment center in the gym that he likes to hang out in.

chocolate labrador retriever mixDown in the gym, Nora and Sammy will chase after each other and he likes to play hide and seek with her.  He really enjoys playing with his siblings when Mama Nora is not available.  He will also entertain himself with stuffed toys, rope toys, balls, nylabones, and the big kong bone.

Sammy’s coloring has been changing as he is aging.  His eyes are not as blue as Penny’s.  They are more of a greenish shade now.  His nose isn’t as pink as when he was born and his fur is changing from a light brown like Penny’s to a more of a chocolate brown.  His legs are also getting speckled with a lighter tan. He still has his small signature white spot on his back.

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chocolate labrador retriever mixSammy has a sweet personality.  When I sit in the pen, he climbs into my lap and gives me lots of kisses.  He also tries to lick my resident dogs when they come and check on them in the pen.  Sammy is also a puppy pile sort of guy, and is rarely sleeping alone.  When he got pushed out of the dog bed, he looked at the full bed, and then quietly climbed on top and laid down. He seems to like his head on someone or something when he naps.  Sammy is a sociable little guy!

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January 1, 2021

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Five weeks old!

December 26, 2020

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Sammy did a great job at the Christmas photo shoot until his personality came out and his curiosity was peaked by the lights.  Sometimes, Sammy is a bit mischievous, and likes to explore and tug at new things that he sees which includes the pee pads, towels and blankets. I can always depend on Sammy to rearrange things.  Good thing this boy is a cutie!

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So since my last update, Sammy has really come around.  This little guy is no longer getting pushed around by his siblings, and he no longer is the smallest.  He is the third heaviest right now.  He is usually the one doing the pushing around, jumping on his siblings and rabble rousing as well.

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After everyone eats their gruel, Sammy, along with his siblings gets the zoomies.  They run around the pen grabbing toys and wrestling with each other.

chocolate labrador retriever mixchocolate labrador retriever mixSammy likes to be held, and is usually one of the first ones to come running to play.  Sammy likes to lick our noses, suck on fingers and toes, and sometimes on a sibling.

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Ever since he was born, Sammy has been a snuggler.  He can usually be found on top of a pile of puppies, or underneath.  His favorite snuggle partner seems to be Penny.

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Sammy was also a good boy at the nail trimming, but he did try to escape the towel wrapping..

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Even though Sammy is still one of the lightest of the group, he does a good job eating his gruel and drinking water.  I must admit though that besides his sister, Penny, he is one of the messiest eaters.  He likes to walk and sometime lay in the gruel while he eats..

December 7, 2020

chocolate labrador retriever mixThis adorable pup was born very early morning Thanksgiving day (11/26/2020) to my foster Nora along with his five sisters and one brother.  I’ll never forget their birthday since it is my birthday too! We decided we would name the pups from our favorite cartoon shows and movies but Sammy is an exception to this trend.  My son’s girlfriend was the attending pup birther.  She had experience since she is studying to be a vet and works/interns at a veterinary practice.  This little guy looked like a Sammy to her so Sammy it was.  Sammy was our littlest pup when he was born weighing 15oz.

chocolate labrador retriever mixHe is still the smallest guy right now at 1lb 12 5/8oz and always seems to get pushed off the teet by his siblings but he is catching up.  We give him and Ace some alone time before adding the bossy ladies to the mix so they can get their milk on.  Sammy and Penny look a lot alike but we can tell them apart by the small white spot on his back and his pink nose.  I was going to call him Spot but I was told by my kids that name was way too basic…

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Adopt Your New Best Friend! 

PLEASE NOTE: While this Lab may not be available for adoption by the time you complete the adoption process, other great Labs are always finding their way into our Rescue.

If you are interested in adopting this Lab or any other Lab from our Rescue, please visit our Web site, www.brooklinelabrescue.org, for more information on our adoption process. If you need additional information about the adoption process or whether you are in our coverage area, please send an e-mail to our Rescue at info@brooklinelabrescue.org

Even if you are not ready to adopt, you can still help us help our Labs!

Brookline Labrador Retriever Rescue is a 501(c)3 non-profit volunteer organization funded entirely by donations. Donations are always needed to help with veterinary costs, transportation, and supplies for our dogs. For information on donating to BLRR please click here. https://brooklinelabrescue.org/get-involved/donate/ Donations are accepted via PayPal or you can mail a check to: Brookline Labrador Retriever Rescue, P.O. Box 638, Warrington, PA 18976-0638