Overcoming fear…

Standard

From one extreme to the other. Working on Remus getting other dog friendly has been a priority, especially with Thanksgiving coming up where he’ll meet the Bosten Terrier puppy cousins. SO I dutifully loaded him into the Prius and took him on an adventure to the dog park a few days ago. Remus was terrified. At first it went ok, he met and sniffed a fellow puppy, a german short hair pointer who was only 5months old and the only other dog at the park. THEN everyone decided to bring every single dog they owned and we were swamped with two pit bulls, two lab-shepard mixes, a pug, a pomeranian, an 8mnth old husky, a rottweiler, a medium sized terrier mutt, and I know I’m missing a few… Remus was scared and overwhelmed and kept trying to shove between my legs. The other dogs were rowdy and playful, but all sweet, no aggressive behavior, just good natured fun. The Rott kept picking up one of the frisbees laying about and dropping it at the feet of every owner except his own expecting someone to throw it for him. I kept stepping away from Remus, allowing him to get sniffed and sniff in return, staying calm and greeting all the other dogs myself so he’d know they were ok. He got chased once or twice for short distances, but he was taller than all the other dogs, though the rott and the husky might have outweighed him by a few pounds, and since he was leaving them alone, they mostly left him alone. I stayed for an hour, the other dogs left in a bug bunch, till it was just me and the girl who owned the german short hair puppy. Remus relaxed visably as the other dogs left, and made tentative friends with the puppy before we called it a day. I thought we might have made some progress, but I was not aware of how much.

After a weekend at Rebecca’s trying in vain to keep Remus from chewing on their house, Brian and I went couch shopping once we returned to Fayetteville, leaving Remus on the front porch with his fence turned on as usual. We come home to discover a stray the neighbors say they had seen before and they think belongs to a person a few streets from our subdivision. They inform me Remus dutifully barked at the stray pittbull mix and the mutt stayed away from our house. That is, until Brian and I pulled into the driveway. I walked over to the neighbor as she was telling me this and the pittbull comes trotting up, tail wagging and tongue lolling out of his mouth. I give him an appreciative pat on the head, he’s a cute enough looking dog, and then Remus decides thats his cue to make instant dog friends. So they tear off around the house chasing each other, all in good natured fun. I was thrilled that Remus was finally playing with a dog like normal, but much less thrilled when the pitt climbed the porch steps and attempted to eat Remus’s food. We unpacked the car, put Remus’s food and water inside, and Remus and the pitt were still running around the yard. We finally get Remus inside, Remus apparently became magically deaf the instant the pitt showed up, and I’m feeling less and less thrilled and increasingly more annoyed. The pitt then decides to sleep on our front porch. I waited till Brian took Remus out the back a few hours later to pee (the pitt ran around the house to join the party) and I swiped the blanket we had on the porch that the pitt had been sleeping on. It worked, the pitt decided cold concrete was not a comfortable sleeping option and he disappeared into the night.

Well, guess who was back this morning as I put Remus’s blanket back outside on the porch and put out his water dish…Yup, the stray pitt. I kept Remus’s food inside, hopefully when the pitt realizes it isn’t getting fed it’ll go elsewhere. Remus is going to be awful hungry when Brian finally gets home, but that’s Remus’s problem for encouraging his new friend. Sheesh. It is a cute stray, but I have no idea how old it is, what its temperment is, whose it is, anything. And it’s smelly. It’s a reddish brown and what looks like a pitt-boxer mix. I’m hoping he allows Remus to sleep some, Remus is still a rather fragile puppy for all of his size. Buh. next place we move needs to have a leash law.

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