working with a pup {an update}

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Last weekend at game night my friends informed me that it was time to set the record straight.

You see, Franklin has been a Lively now for almost four months and in the beginning he was quite a handful.

To say the least.

It’s hard, looking back, to really understand how that the little five pound white fluff ball was able to wreak so much havoc over our lives those first few months.

He just looks so cute and innocent in his pictures. It’s hard to imagine his nipping, growling, potty training (or lack thereof), and chewing.

And though I didn’t spare you the difficulties of puppy rearing here on the blog, I haven’t shared his improvements. As my friend Steve said, it’s time to save Franklin’s reputation.

Sometime between four and five months old, Franklin calmed down considerably. As his teething passed and he got more socialization in puppy class and doggie day care, he got better and better.

I’m sure it is partly maturity and the lack of painful teething but either way – he’s sweetened up quite a bit and really grown to become an awesome part of our little family.

And I’ll be honest – he’s quite the daddy’s boy.

When Mr. Lively comes home, Franklin rushes to the door and starts jumping back and forth in the same place. He waves his paws in the air as if to say, “Get outta town! You’re back and it’s gonna be awesome!”

It’s pretty much my favorite thing about him. That, and how his eyes close in ecstasy when I rub his ears.

He’s also learned to sleep near me during workdays or “work with me” as he is right now (shown in the photo above). “Working” for him involves sitting on my chair and chewing a bully stick.

Though I’d like to say that he’s a breeze to work with, that would still be untrue. I do continue to deeply enjoy the two days a week that he goes to doggie day care just as much as he does.

Since he’s never knows when he’s going to day care, he patiently sits near the door after breakfast each morning wishing, hoping that Dad is gonna drive him to day care so he can play with his friends.

All in all, he’s really getting into our work from home groove quite well. I’m especially thankful that we have our patio as he gets older. Whenever he feels like going outside to “check in on things” I can let him out on the patio to people watch.

But perhaps more than anything, I am loving how he has turned us into a little family. Though I’m sure Mr. Lively and I would be just fine without Franklin, it’s been great to bond as a trio. We share responsibilities, have our own unique bonds with Franklin, and take “family walks.”

So though I may have painted the initial puppy picture as difficult, I can now say with certainty, it is not easy at first but things do get better (just like so many of you shared with me as well).

It is possible to have a puppy and remain effective working from home… most of the time.



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    Good to know! I’m hoping to get a puppy (or adopt an adult dog) next year, so it’s nice to hear your experience with it.

    1. Jess Lively

      I’m glad you found it helpful! Good luck with your new (future) pup!

  2. aww, this is sweet. oliver is only a few months younger, teething now, but has really become a great companion. i love how franklin sits with you while you work 🙂

    1. Jess Lively

      Thanks! It’s not always easy to get him to stay there for very long, but he’s gotten into doing it a few times a day. : )

  3. Sage Grayson

    Such a cutie! I work at home with a puppy too (boxer/pitbull mix), but she’s really mellow.

    1. Jess Lively

      Nice! It definitely could be the case that Franklin will calm even more when he’s older (and his terrier-ness might have been partly why he was so crazy to begin with).

  4. Dawnielle

    Sometimes scooping up those little pups and squishing them next to you is the only way to get any work done, I’m so grateful everytime it works. My Hubby calls our little guy his “study buddy”. *swoon*

  5. stef

    So glad to hear things have improved! I feel like we really turned a corner with our German Shepherd pup between 5 and 6 months. She suddenly went from a destructive ball of energy to a really sweet, cuddly ball of energy. It’s tough to put in so much work when you aren’t really feeling the “reward”. Now, her cuddles and enthusiasm certainly make the work “worth it”. Sounds like Franklin is earning his place in the family 🙂

    1. Jess Lively

      Well put! I’m glad you have had the same cuddlier turn of events with your pup, too!

  6. Claire

    I work from home and have a puppy almost the same age as Franklin! I can’t tell you how many nights in those first days/weeks my boyfriend came home to find me *crying* because I was so stressed out and overwhelmed. People thought I was being ridiculous, but it is so hard to work from home – and get actual work done – while having a young puppy. Between having to take the puppy out to pee literally every 20 minutes, the many accidents, and his hyper personality, I was exhausted.

    But! Now that he’s about 5 months old (that must be the magic age), he’s calmed down quite a bit and realized that life isn’t one big playtime. Sometimes he needs to sit quietly and chew a bone or take a nap so I can get work done, and we both seem to have adjusted to that pretty well. Honestly, I think we both needed more time than I expected to bond with one another and feel like he was really part of the family – which he completely does now. It’s nice to hear someone had similar experiences to mine, though – I felt like a really awful puppy mom for those first few weeks!

    1. Jess Lively

      Oh man, I can totally, completely relate to your experience. It seems as though many do not have quite our experience with their new pups, and that can be a scary thing to consider. But yes, I felt *exactly* as you did.

      And honestly, I feel like only today is the first day that I’m kinda sad that he’s at day care all day. Normally, it’s kinda a nice break. Soon, I’ll be the sad one and he’ll still love going to day care to play with his friends.

      You know what? That feels pretty good. I’m glad I’ll be able to miss him.

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