I'll fill in a little about the rest of the time between Monte returning from "Camp Douglas" and Jeff getting back on his feet, since it was only me and Monte for a good week and a half. We spent time taking care of Jeff (Monte's self-appointed job was to sit by Jeff's bed and stare hard at him, and if Jeff stirred at all, Monte would wag his tail wildly as if relieved to realize he was still alive!) Monte and I went to classes and walks and ran errands and played, pretty much bonding. We got a compliment from a man with a small black terrier-type dog. The tiny dog was not only barking but walking leaning sideways as it was pulling a full-grown man in the opposite direction of wherever his owner wanted to go. The man gave me a thumb's up and said "it's amazing what a little discipline can do to make walks a pleasant experience!"
So much of the time we only write about the good things our dogs do, when we all know puppyraising is full of ups and downs, and it is a continual learning process for dog and handler. I think it is good to hear that all of us struggle sometimes. Monte did his share of testing me the past 2 weeks. One early morning, I decided after Monte's potty break to let him off leash for a bit to do some exploring while I cleaned up after him. He bolted cross country away from me, into the neighbor's yard to a spot where a squirrel likes to sit. No squirrel, but Monte was determined to sniff every inch of the neighbor's yard and ignore my call for him to return. I tried the old trick of running the opposite direction to no avail. Finally I had to walk over and leash him back up without a successful recall. I was more angry at myself for letting him off leash without knowing for sure I could get him back, but was also disappointed that Monte decided to blow off the recall. We immediately ran through some obedience, and Monte was golden and got high praise for this. It is sometimes hard for us humans to let go of the indiscretion of our dogs long after the dogs have moved on. I'm sure there was a squirrel hiding somewhere laughing at both of us that morning!