At times it appears as though our seven month old puppy, Monte, is the proverbial "square peg" trying to fit in the round hole. Our most recent cause for concern is his frenzied behavior when encountering other species - fowl in particular.
At the CSA farm this week we visited the chickens and turkeys and Monte would not calm down. He would remain stationary and not attack, but in a constant state of alert. His body was literally shaking and he was continually crying to be let loose. He should get better with more exposure, but how much? We will be near the zoo this weekend, so that will provide another test.
Our long, lanky boy is filling out a bit, but he is definitely built to move, and move quickly. Once a week, we take him to a secure field to let him run free. Monte loves to run. He seemingly runs with no other purpose than to see how fast he can go. I have never seen him happier, as he races back to check in with us and sprint away after receiving a pat on back and a "Good Dog".
We keep waiting for the trainers to make the call that it might be better for Monte to pursue a different career choice - maybe as a racing greyhound, which he resembles. However, the night following the chicken episode was training class and Monte, although not the greatest STAYer, excels at pivots and getting into the proper HEEL position. So eager to please, he occasionally leaps backwards into the air, twisting his body to position himself at my side. Then he looks up and returns my smile.
We need to remember that he is still young and most Labrador are square pegs.