Happy Thorsday! Now that there’s a little distance between us, I can tell you about last Tuesday’s big scary encounter. I’ve written about the bully dog who sometimes charges us on our walk before, but last Tuesday, it and its very large terrier mix “friend” came after us and made contact. I was able to get the girls mostly safely up the road and called the Knight when I saw blood in Sissy’s mouth. (The tiniest bit, but still!!)
Exploring the exam room
Roughly 36 hours later, I notice a puncture wound near Sissy’s rectum. It is now all but completely healed without incident, and after not walking at all (because they were tired from being at work with me) and walking on my inlaws’ road instead of ours on Saturday, on Sunday, armed with the spray the Knight had ordered as soon as we got home on Tuesday, we walked our usual route.
It was blissfully uneventful and we were all refreshed for it. However on Tuesday evening, we marched up our road again, and heard the … problem(s) barking, so we turned around, but I caught the sound of their responsible male owner calling them in, so we turned again, and continued. I wanted to thank him (positive reinforcement?), but a truck went by just then and by the time it cleared, he too was inside.
I had been wondering if the girls were emotionally damaged by the attack. Their encounter with another (leashed) dog on Saturday was normal, which is to say Gretchen began shrieking, Sissy began shouting her hellos, and I just apologized and smiled, and continued walking, thankfully in the opposite direction. Sunday, they didn’t look around or linger in front of the “problem house” as they usually do, so I was hopeful…
They acted normally on Tuesday. They whined a bit, they looked up the drive when we passed, and that was that. Then, about a quarter mile later, I heard Buster (the overly friendly young adult pit bull we’ve met several times before) being called by a VERY frustrated female.
Again, we turned, but not before the outgoing fella’ saw us and sprinted our way. Sissy again turned and placed herself between us and him (hello? one-eyed hound? you’re not guard dog material!!), and then realized “Oh, it’s just HIM” and turned, wagging her tail. Gg had to be scooped up to perch on my head/shoulder, but that’s her norm with Buster. One Buster’s mom arrived and he and Sissy began playing, Gg did get down and just stayed close to me.
However, we also learned that Buster’s mom wouldn’t recommend the local dog parks to help my girls develop trust for other dogs. I’d kinda’ already reached that conclusion, but it was good to hear it from a neighbor I know understands what I want from a friendly dog encounter…
Sissy playing with a fur-relation
So, how DO you socialize your pups? Yes, I realize that at 4 and 5 the fur-girls are very late to the party, but I was almost immobilized with back problems when Sissy was a pup, and Gg only weighs 11 lbs. now, so we were VERY hesitant to take her little less than 10 lbs. puppy self ANYWHERE. They have played with relatives’ trusted dogs, but even the vet that relates to Gg best (since Wondervet moved away) QUICKLY nixed my notions of taking Gg to doggy school, based on the girl’s nerves.
Oh… and if you have a smaller dog that likes vest-style harnesses, click over to my blog for Gg’s new favorite!