Adopted on July 10, 2010
July 10th marked the one year anniversary of our adopting Luke and we wanted to give everyone an update on how he is doing. To put it plainly, Luke is just a great dog. Over the past year he has thrived in his new environment and has become a cherished member of our family. As time has passed his true personality has steadily shone through, and today he is the happy, confident boy we all thought he could be when we first met him.
A vital part of keeping Luke on the right path after his rescue was enrolling him in obedience school after we adopted him. It was an eight week course that covered all essential commands as well as leash training. It was a great opportunity to reinforce the training Luke received from GSRNE, as well as to further his socialization with other dogs. He responded very well to the exercises and was praised by the instructor on multiple occasions (no small feat considering the stern disposition of the instructor!).
Outside of the classroom we have done our best to keep Luke on a daily schedule consisting of feedings, rest, and lots of exercise. We discovered soon after taking Luke home that he is the ultimate beach bum, and we’ve spent many a Saturday and Sunday playing and exploring in the sand and surf. Once we tire him out, he’s very content to dig a hole in a shaded area and nap while listening to the waves.
Last fall we found a dog park nearby that Luke thoroughly enjoys. It is not a traditional fenced in area, but a system of trails that circle a large lake. It gives him plenty of opportunity to explore the woods, play with other dogs, and cool off in the water.
During the week Luke enjoys neighborhood jogs in the morning and playing backyard fetch in the evening. By the end of the day he is usually worn out and it is pretty comical to watch him put himself to bed on a night when we lose track of time while watching TV. He looks up at us as if to say, “Don’t you know what time it is?”, and then gets up and puts himself in his crate. Needless to say he has become a creature of habit, and it definitely suits him.
On April 3rd we celebrated the birth of our first child, Jack. When we first found out that Erin was pregnant, we were a bit nervous about how such a major change would affect Luke. We researched methods to prepare dogs for the arrival of a newborn and spent several months working with him in various ways in order to make the transition as easy as possible. We strove to minimize any changes in Luke’s normal routine. The end result has been incredibly successful. Luke has been wonderful with Jack and has shown no jealousy, aggression or animosity toward him. In the beginning we kept their introductions brief, but over time we’ve been able to allow longer interactions. Luke enjoys giving Jack a quick sniff followed by a lick or two, and he sees it as his duty to lie close by anytime the baby is on a play matt or in his ExerSaucer. It will be interesting to see how he reacts when Jack begins crawling!