A close shave!

Here's some pics of Jax in his shaggy pomp. He is gorgeous and everyone adores his long, shaggy locks.
That was until Tuesday when Jax went for his first haircut. Its recommended that you cut your SWD pup between 4-5 months to take off its puppy coat as its adult coat comes through. So we took him to Tracey Wilkinson at Hampton Dog Grooming (below). Tracey has done SWDs before and was recommended, so at 1130h on Tuesday I popped Jax round to her home-based doggy grooming salon. We had a good look around meeting both Tracey (below on right with Jax) and Debbie. Jax had a good sniff and appeared very relaxed. Tracey is one of those doggie naturals. Jax just took to her instantly. After 10 mins I left him there. This was the first time he'd ever been taken anywhere and left. He's been left at home many times, but never in as strange place. A couple of hours later Tracey called me to say he was ready to collect. She said he'd been a real star, really well behaved with no problems. She then told me he was currently fast asleep in the holding crate! Now thats what I call relaxed!

Tracey with a shawn Jax and Debbie at her grooming table.

And this was the result - one bare dog! He looks very sad but he really didn't seem to be bothered at all. The only difference I could see was that he he could feel the rain and was constantly stopping to shake himself. He never did that when he was a woolly rug.

Despite not being woolly anymore folk still adore him. A few days on and his coat is already growing and starting to look wavy and he is still a very handsome dog - just not as distinctive as when he had his shaggy coat.

More pics will follow to show how quickly his coat grows and curls!


Fifi (Jax's sister) gets a hair cut

Olivia sent me this pic of Fifi, Jax's sis, taken just after she had her coat clipped last week. Bless, she looks ever so sad! Jax's turn soon if we can pin a groomer down!

Sunday school

On Sundays Jax goes to puppy classes run by Talking Dogs. Let's meet Jax's classmates.

The gorgeous Betty-Boo.

The ever so cute and cuddly Alfie.

Stanley (front) and Kissy. Two Cockers with completely different temperaments - Stan the laid back man and Little Miss Frizzy Kissy.

Stanley being very well behaved as Pam (Talking Dogs) demonstrates how to do the slalom walk with our pups.

Kissy chasing Jax.

Betty-Boo biting off more than she can chew.

Alfie and the king Kong Wubba. The puppy Wubba is Jax's fave toy.

Thanks to Paul (Talking Dogs) for taking the snaps during the class!

One wet water dog

Well, with all this rain it means only one thing - a wet dog. Even if its not actually raining Jax's wandering around the fen through long grass and vegetation means he arrives home bedraggled!

The only good thing about a wet Jax is that it means we don't bring half the field back with him. A non-shedding dog he might be, but low maintenance dog he most certainly isn't. His coat is like velcro and everything and anything will stick to him. Thankfully we've learnt that he's not bad at getting things out for himself. We just remove the branches and other debris that prevents him getting through the door!


Jax's doggy training classes

Jax goes to two different classes at present:

Whittlesey, nr Peterborough | 01 733 204 118
An 8-week course run by Pam McKinnon at Werrington in Peterborough. This is a puppy only class and Jax is one of five pups -
Stanley (Cocker), Kissy (Cocker), Alfie (Lab) and Betty-Boo (Boston Terrier). This is a great class which concentrates on establishing the basics with one of the organisers to 2/3 dogs.

Fivejays Pet Care & Animal Education
Pondersbridge, nr Peterborough | 01 733 844 538

Marion runs dog classes in each week in Farcet, Eye and Coats. Jax goes to the Coates class on Wednesday lunchtimes with a whole menagerie of other dogs - should they all turn up on the same day I'm sure the hall wont be big enough! This is a much more general class, and whilst concentrating on many of the basics, its brilliant for socialisation. Jax is very nervous around other dogs and this class is gradually drawing him out of his shell.

Two different classes but very complimentary to one another. I recommend them both very highly.


Bloody hell! Times flown by again and I haven't updated all our fans :-p about Jax's progress! Well, Liz has been in the states and Steve's been busy writing the Lesvos 2010 bird report in his spare time as well as looking after Jax and 91-yr old mother in law, Elsie.

Well, there he is above on a walk along one of our local fen drains with Steve. We have water all around us but at 16 weeks Jax hasn't yet shown any interest in going in. I don't blame him, its freezing!

If we're lucky, we might get this after a walk and some play! - but it doesn't happen often yet.

Jax is now going to weekly 1-hr sessions with Five Jays at Coates (general doggy classes for all ages) and started a Talking Dogs 6-wk puppy class. He's been to three Five Jays and two Talking Dogs sessions and is coming on great. He's still very nervous with other dogs, but by the end of each class he's almost being social! At Talking Dogs he's one of five pups along with Kissy (Cocker), Stanley (Cocker), Alfie (Golden Retriever) and Betty Boo (Boston Terrier). I think Alfie is the only one younger than Jax. He clearly faces the little fleece jacket off Betty Boo's back, but he's scared stiff of her! She wants to say hello and he just runs away. Alfie's quick to take advantage though being the 'daddy' of the class and muscles in! Jax is gonna have to learn soon else he's going to miss out on socialising with these lovely pups. They're all happy tangling their owners up around one another whilst playing, whilst Jax just looks on. I think he progresses more each Five Jays class for socialising as he's the youngest and although there are a couple of smaller dogs, most are much larger and not just wanting to play.

Talking Dogs introduced us to clicker training and this is helping to reinforce a few things with him and he seems to respond very well to it. On the whole he's very well behaved for a pup. he's sitting on command (from anyone), lies down when Steve asks him to, comes back when called (well, most of the time!, he's OK with fetch (but it depends what you throw - throw something he isn't used to fetching and no can do), is getting the hang of 'leave' and understands the 'off' command when he's on the sofa. He's started pulling on his lead at times and this is something we're working on each day and he's getting a wee bit better. He's off lead most of the time when out walking and so far no problems - apart from too many burrs!

This has got much, much better. When he greets us in a morning he now does so with a chew toy and nipping/biting is now becoming restricted to when he needs to go out to toilet. So all going well here.

Burrs and bits
Ah well, we live with em I guess. He does actually manage to get an awful lot out himself if left to it.

Chews, treats and food
Orijen still going OK, mixed with Burns Mini Bites and now James Wellbeloved Puppy (came free from Talking Dogs so using it mixed with Orijen). All OK.

Training treats - natures:menu rules OK! We're getting through bags of them though, but I've found cutting them in half is still working fine. If I was being really tight I could probably cut them into three!

General treats and chews - he's just about eating his way through the cheaper thigns we bought early on, but he loves the odd big treat now he's older including tripe sticks, pork sticks, beef sausage and hot dogs. We've got him some pigs ears too and a few other bits which he hasn't got round to trying yet. He doesn't turn his nose up to much!

He enjoys a slice of apple or pear most days and if he's in the mood he'll eat some carrot. I found a pile along one of the drove sides the other day (carrots and onions literally fall of the back of lorries around here) and these are in the freezer for him to crunch to help his teething.

Jax gets chipped
Well, I popped in to the vets this morning as I was passing to arrange an appointment to have him chipped and they did him there and then. Great stuff! He barely flinched and enjoyed all the fussing.

Putting on weight
At the vets I discovered our scales aren't that accurate as I made him 10kg on Sat but the vet weighed him at 9.4kg this morning.

Getting woolly
At 16 weeks his coat is now getting very shaggy and long and we're thinking about getting him clipped in the next month before his adult coat starts to come through (from 5-6 months so I;ve read). We'll just get this frost period out of the way and then get it done.

Liz comes home
It was difficult to tell if he missed Liz whilst she was away, but he certainly went berserk when she came home on Saturday evening! So lets say he did! unfortunately I think all the excitement threw him as he soiled his pen badly overnight and again on the wood floor (thankfully) on Sun morning and then didn't go again until this morning. All sorted now though.

That's all folks! More soon I hope!