Vy and I have been taking care of Boba, our neighbor’s dog for a few days now and I decided to write a little note about our experience of welcoming him to our family.
We got to know him maybe a bit more than a year ago when walking around a nearby park. Boba was walking along with our neighbor and Yuna got sight of him. Up until then, Yuna had not played with too many of her kind. She and Boba got along quickly. We weren’t too sure about letting her off leash in the park but decided to let her roam freely with Boba for a few minutes. Boba was a bit chubby so he ran out of breath quickly after a short chase. He was persistent in playing though as he picked up the pace as soon as he caught his breath. Our neighbor told us that Boba was also not into playing with other dogs but he seemed interested in playing with our dog. We knew from then on that we would let them meet and play more often together.
The arrival of Boba
Boba was already house-trained so we weren’t too worried about getting him acclimated to our place. We introduced him to the house and to the backyard where he could relieve himself. He did not like the doggy door at first but it didn’t take long for Vy to get him used to it. Boba is very food-motivated, especially rice according to our neighbor. Only a few pieces of rice later, Boba was able to go in and out easily. We were delighted that this solved the potty issue.
Boba’s appetite may have been affected by the new environment as he didn’t eat too much on the first day. We gave him his kibble but he only ate a few of them. We tried giving him other types of kibble that we have and although he was interested in Royal Canin kibbles, he didn’t eat too much. The second day, Vy mixed it up and made some oatmeal with blended kibble, which seemed to be appetizing for him. His stool was a bit soft though. But it could either be the food or he was still nervous a bit at our place.
Yuna and Boba interaction
Before Boba arrived at our place, Vy and I thought this would be a great opportunity for Yuna to have a friend at home. They can play and expend their energy. They did play together but not much. When they’re home, they are lazy and not into physical activities that much.
They still got along well. We did not see any aggression between both of them and they tend to be out of each other’s way. Boba was very sweet as he liked to sit on my lap. Yuna seemed okay with it and she would also come to me so I could pet both of them. I did see some resource guarding from Yuna, which was surprising. She did not like that Boba would approach her when she was enjoying her bully stick. This didn’t happen when she was around Momo, my sister’s Maltese. Boba did not show any sign of resource guarding.
We took them out to a dog park on the weekend and they would rather explore the place than play with one another. There were some other dogs there but they weren’t too interested either.
Vy and I were warned about his howling beforehand but it still took us. Boba howls a few times a day. We aren’t exactly sure why but we guess that Boba could be bored and he is looking for a way to show his distress and to lose some energy. We tried taking him out for a walk before bed and that seemed to calm him down and reduce the howl. Boba slept a lot during the day so he could have a lot of energy penned up.
Our human-dog relationship
Boba already knew us before during his play date with Yuna so it did not take long for him to warm up to us. He is an affectionate dog and likes to curl up on my lap for a bit of heat. He does not like me to touch his belly too much, especially when I try to get him to lie on his back. Boba still does not listen to me as much as I want. It’s understandable as we have not lived together before so it takes time for me to gain his trust. Like Yuna, Boba tends to run away when we put the harness on him. I had to chase him a bit yesterday because he refused to stay still for me to put it on him. I treated that as the pre-exercise for our walk. I am delighted by his walking behavior and enjoyed walking him as he didn’t try to pull me and drag me like Yuna did.
His howling affected Vy and I’s sleep a bit as we were sensitive to noise. It is a compromise between him and us because he isn’t familiar with the place and we still don’t understand him well enough. We often wondered about getting another dog and Boba represented an opportunity for us to do so. I felt a little uneasy at first but Boba proved to be easy enough to live with. I gave him a shower the other day as Boba had a bit of poop stuck on his fur. He was gentle enough to let me do so. Vy and I decided to make Boba run a bit during our walk. So far we have increased his running distance from 0.1 to 0.2 mile.