"Sometimes I think that all anyone needs in life is lots of popcorn and a few Lovelies" ~ Sam Savage
We have a small, fenced yard but enough room to throw a ball and play; he definitely needs a yard with some space to explore, but the most important element of "outside" for Popcorn is ensuring he gets at least two 20-30 minute walks each day. He shouldn't be left outside in the backyard unattended as he is still getting into everything and must be watched to make sure he stays safe and well-behaved.
Pops is still a big puppy at heart. Because of this, he doesn't do well with outings in uncontrolled settings yet- his excitement often gets the best of him. It is difficult to take him to public places without having to remind him all the time to practice his manners. That said, He's great in the car- Popcorn usually lays down and takes a nap.
We are crate training him, so for now he sleeps in a large crate with sheets and a lot of blankets. He's doing very well in his kennel. When we initially brought him home he'd cry for about 3 minutes and then lay down, but it's not a problem anymore.
Popcorn is continually teaching his foster mom and dad the importance of consistency and patience, but as long as we keep those qualities at the front of our training and work with him, he does a pretty good job of learning rules and boundaries and remembering his manners. Popcorn needs a strong, patient leader, and while this can be a difficult role to fulfill on a consistent basis, he rewards his family with love and fun and good behavior.
A total happy-go-lucky goofball. He's such a clown. Pop has an easy-going personality but he is full of spirit. Though he is indeed quite the clown, don't expect him to be a circus dog. Lets just say that Popcorn has no malice but doing advanced obedience tricks might not be his forte. Being a fun-loving entertainer however, is!
Indeed, this goofball is VERY outgoing and friendly. Definitely silly and hilarious to watch him discover new sights, sounds, smells, etc. Not overly rambunctious - Pops can get wound up about a toy but calms down when re-directed. He generally just wants to be right at our feet sitting or laying no matter where we are or what we're doing.
Pop has a moderate amount of energy. It doesn't take a ton to wear him out and once he's tired, he is a very calm dog, especially for his age. Not anxious at all - Pops doesn't seem to be bothered by any sounds outside when he's in the house with us. Popcorn hasn't shown strong signs of dominance but not overly submissive either- these qualities could change though as he grows up a little bit. He would likely show dominance over a very submissive dog, though.
Popcorn notices and occasionally gets excited by small animals (squirrels, birds, rabbits) outside. Popcorn loves to explore new things- He hasn't yet gotten himself into any super sticky situations because of being too curious. He definitely needs to be watched outside though as he loves to get into any and everything he can find. :) Playful but also a couch potato.
He definitely needs a strong structure and schedule to get his manners and discipline more cemented. Strong, consistent leadership makes Popcorn a great dog, and dedication to his training and exercise will go so far to make him the best companion he can be. He's doing very well after such a short time with us and is very responsive to instruction so eventually he could probably go to most any living situations. He can be incredibly stubborn, and can transition from interest to obsession quickly when he finds a new and exciting object. His obsessiveness is a trait we're working on, as it's not healthy or helpful for him to get too focused on any toy or object because his manners and training go right out the window. Again, consistency and structure are key for Popcorn's success. He's not yet a "low maintenance" dog, and needs to be watched and kept track of while out in the house.
For now, I think it would be hard for him to be crated for more than 5 hours at a time because his energy just builds up and then makes him ornery until he goes for a walk/run. Also, at this point, he'd definitely need to be crated any time he's home alone - he's a puppy still and is curious about most every single thing in the house.
Behavior with people:
We've had a few people over since Popcorn's been in our home, and he's done fine with everyone. He does get VERY excited to meet new people he sees on walks or through the fence in the backyard, but he is just showing his friendly, social side. :)
Behavior with children:
Popcorn has met an older child (~8 years old), and while he did fine with her, he shouldn't go to a home with any children under the age of 5; he doesn't show aggression or dominance behaviors over children, but can get mouthy still and needs to be reminded to stay calm when things may get a little exciting for him. He is slightly clumsy and any kids would need to be old/big enough to stay on two feet should clumsy, happy Popcorn accidentally run into them. :) Also, it's important that any kids in Popcorn's future home know the importance of his training and stay consistent with Popcorn's house rules.
Behavior with other dogs:
We have one other dog. We did a very strict, 2-week crate and rotate period and this was essential for Popcorn to de-sensitize himself to the excitement of having another dog in the house. The foster brothers have been introduced for about 2 months now, and while they do get along, they need to be constantly supervised during play outside and are never left alone in the house without a human present to supervise their behaviors. Popcorn doesn't show any signs of aggression, but he is sometimes stubbornly excited to the point of driving his foster brother crazy with a constant desire to play. When the dogs do play together outside, we make sure to break up their playing every few minutes to stop any obsessive/over-excited behaviors Popcorn may be showing, and to give our resident dog a chance to be finished playing if he needs it; Pop probably would keep playing all day to the point of exhaustion/annoyance for his playmate.
Behavior with Cats:
We don't have any cats, but Popcorn has encountered some during stays with another foster mom, and he shows obsessive, unhealthy behavior with them. He shouldn't go to a house with cats.
We're working on all aspects of training with Popcorn. He is doing very well, especially on his manners; Not jumping, staying off furniture, only picking up/chewing on dog toys, sitting before going outside, not pushing through doorways, etc. Like I said, he's pretty much learned all of those manners and we're in the reinforcement/remembering phase of practicing them now. He learned quickly and even as playful as he is, seems to remember his rules pretty well.
Leash training is on-going with Pops. He's VERY strong and incredibly stubborn, so it can be difficult to control him if he gets distracted by a passing dog or person, but he's doing pretty well at re-focusing on us and if we instruct him to sit when he gets excited. He seems to listen and respond pretty well. Again though, his puppy-ness definitely shines through in walking skills, so this is a daily area of practice.
Popcorn is housebroken. He has never had any accidents in the house. He's crate trained (see above), and we're working on basic obedience, as explained above.
Popcorn knows basic commands: Sit, stay, no, leave it. The biggest help to us now though is getting his attention/re-focusing his puppy brain when he's forgotten his manners. He's incredibly responsive to those commands, so that's the best trick he does. I don't know that "tricks" will ever be Popcorn's expertise; obedience and manners are most important right now, and as long as Pops is loved, cuddled, and given a squeaky tennis ball, he's a happy pup.
His face says it all... He has SO much love to give and is really very eager to please his family. He loves people and wants to play and spend time with us as much as possible. His puppy eyes and bottom lip are irresistible and I have a strong feeling he's well aware of that fact. :) When I'm in another room, Pops will find me and calmly sit or lay down by me, and then look up at me with that baby face. He's a perfect distraction from the busy, chaotic, stressful day to day life, and a wonderful reminder that love and play will go SO far and help both humans and dogs live happy lives. He's such a good boy, is well at learning new rules and manners, and will be a great family member.