As hard as it was for us in the beginning to believe that Kylie was still a puppy, she was very determined to convince us. She was very destructive!
Kylie destroyed everything! Her favorites were electrical cords, she chewed through phone cords, fan cords, extension cords, and more cords. We tried putting tobasco sauce on the cords, that just made her more determined; we tried that bitter apple stuff which merely inconvenienced her but she would not be deterred. She threw up at some point (go figure) and there were bits of copper wire in the mix (sorry, that’s gross). Once we were even sitting in the living room, watching television in the evening when we heard a ZAP, a YELP, and the lights went out simultaneously. She had chewed through a lamp cord while it was plugged in and even that didn’t convince her to find a new hobby!
She also seemed to fancy unmentionables when she was looking for something to tear up – bras and boxer shorts, etc. Yeah… no idea what that was about.
Kylie got into the trash all the time, she knocked the christmas tree over that first year several times. It got to the point that when we were driving home we would start getting stressed out wondering.. what did Kylie destroy today.
Our solution was a little unique – we set up a Kylie rescue fund. Each week her three roomates would put money into Kylie’s piggy bank so that when she broke something the money to replace it came out of her savings. It worked out pretty well.. when she would destroy stuff, she had to pay to replace it out of her allowance!
When Kylie grew out of chewing things up finally, we kept putting the money in the piggy bank weekly and started calling it her allowance. Interestingly, even though Kylie would chew up almost anything, including paper and magazines, she would never destroy cash. And if you happen to miss a weekend payment, she would be sure to let you know!
Over the years she got the occasional raise and since she wasn’t having to pay to replace things, she built up a savings and eventually we opened an interest bearing bank account for her where she typically had a couple thousand dollars. Then Kylie was able to use her own money to buy christmas presents for family and friends and occasionally make a donation to an animal rescue.
I don’t know how we came up with it, but most every dog parent we’ve told about it has said it was a great idea and they wanted to try it. I guess we should have written a book about puppy parenting – we could have called it “what not to do.”