Thorin turns three years old June 17th, 2019 and we decided this month’s blog should feature him! He has studded two TDR Litters (one at Moondance, and one at Hawthorne) and hope anyone wanting to learn more about his character can use this. Thorin is our lazy boy and laid back pup who is happy being a companion. He has good manners and is a good listener. He only gets grumpy if you skimp on the belly rubs and his favorite days are those going for car rides and exploring new places. Strangers aren’t his favorite, but he has warmed up to most of our friends and family with time and patience.
Much like our Meet Athena Blog- I have summarized Thorin’s attitude in different situations. I’ve tried to rate them as standard tamaskan traits (in my opinion), no effort traits (easier than typical tams), and struggle (more difficult than the average tam) areas. These are not necessarily good or bad traits. As you can see, general tamaskan traits require some effort – lots of socialization and lots of work to get them to be the well-rounded dogs they have the potential to be. This is part of the reason they are not recommended for first time dog owners, but we promise they are well worth the effort!
(Standard) House Break: Thorin was easy enough to potty train. He didn’t potty in his crate after a week of being home and it took only a few months for him to fully understand the whole house was our home, and therefore not a place for poops. He never took to bell training to let us know when he needs to go outside, and will stare at you with a doleful look to let you know it’s time.
(No Effort) Car: Thorin has always been fine in the car with us. We picked him up from a neighboring state’s airport and upon meeting him, made a seven hour drive home just fine. We know that in Sweden, Thorin did have some incidents of car sickness, but he has always been more than fine with us. In fact, he loves car rides around town and going for long road trips. He’ll jump into the car anytime a door is opened!
(No Effort) Obedience Training: Thorin impressed us at a young age with his ability to pick up on new commands. He loved clicker training and enjoyed four different puppy classes – Polite Puppy, Basic Manners and More, Clicks for Tricks, and High Distraction class. He generalizes quickly and is able to pick up on subtle differences in commands. He’s sometimes too smart for his own good and occasionally can be stubborn and reply back with husky talk before following what we ask. Ultimately though, he very much wants to please [me]!
(Struggle) Other People: The more we learn and understand about puppy growth and training, the more evident is becomes that Thorin came home during a fear period. He unfortunately has always been timid with strangers, and a couple of negative encounters has caused us some heartache with socializing him appropriately. As a grown dog, he barks at approaching strangers and can be quite apprehensive. He prefers to meet them on his own terms and because he is an inquisitive dog, as long as he is able to sniff and work out that you aren’t going to hurt him, he warms up eventually. We know that part of this is our fault for not socializing him as much as he needed, though we did socialize him quite a bit as a puppy.
(Standard) Other Dogs: Thorin likes to be in the company of other dogs, and like most intact males, doesn’t always play nice with other males. He loves to run around and absolutely loves to play with tiny dogs who he tries to leap over like a trick dog. Unfortunately we’ve had some negative reinforcements at dog parks and no longer frequent them with the dogs.
(Standard) Food: Thorin is happy to eat most kibble and loves getting raw meat, organs, and bones. He gets a little more picky with fruits and vegetables, but if in the mood enjoys apples, blueberries, peaches, carrots, and pumpkin! He prefers his eggs cooked and takes a pass on fish. Occasionally he gets a bit gruffy with Athena, but has never been truly food aggressive.
(No Effort) Separation Anxiety: Thorin crate trained well as a young pup and being the only dog in the house for his first year with us, he handles alone time quite well. He has never escaped his crate or been more destructive when left alone. Since Athena has joined our pack, he does get more unsettled when she is gone, but overall is still fine to be left at home alone.
(Standard) Walking: Thorin likes to pull on walks, and we practice “loose” leash walking every time we’re out. We joke that Thorin likes to walk at the end of the leash, with just enough to pressure to let you know he’s exploring all the smells around him. I run with him as well, and though he’s definitely faster than I am, he never becomes uncontrollable and listens very well when it’s time to ignore a squirrel.
(Standard) Talking: Thorin only barks when he is approached by strangers, and does husky talk when he wants attention. He has become more talkative with time (and has become much more of a cuddle bug). He’s not a big howler, but every now and again will join in with a cell phone alarm in off-pitch, yippy howls.
(Standard) Small Prey Animals: Thorin loves to find creatures in the yard. At four months he swallowed a bird whole - which led to x-rays and extreme hairball medication). These days he readily finds shrews in the yard, loves to nose at toads, and gives the neighborhood squirrels a run for their money. We do have two cats at home, both of which he occasionally likes to chase, but has never harmed.
(Standard) Puppy Destruction: Thorin was fairly mellow as a puppy, but he did love to chew on things. He ate a hole in the dry wall, nibbled on the backs of wooden chairs, and ate two pairs of leather shoes. He destroyed stuffed animals in record time, and ate his first few dog beds, but since his young months of puppyhood has not continued on eating the house. He’s now had a dog bed in his crate since he first turned two and has not chewed on it at all.
(Standard) Play Style: Thorin can be a bit mouthy when he plays, but he is never overly rough. He absolutely loves to play with the flirt pole in the backyard, and enjoys a few rounds with a tug toy, though he really doesn’t understand that he is supposed to tug on it... He loves to be chased and jump around like a goofball. He’s isn’t lightning quick like Athena, but loves to run.
(Struggle) Shedding: Thorin is CONSTANTLY shedding. His shedding gets exponentially worse the two times a year he blows his coat, which is quite frankly a seemingly impossible amount of fluff. We run our robo-vacuum daily and always have a lint roller on standby. We literally cannot brush it all out of him. For the major coat blowing times of the year, it just becomes a daily task to brush him out for about 15 minutes for a couple weeks.