March 29, 2011
Doggie Diary IV
Well, Mercedes is now a part of my family. We are having a learning curve here on adjusting to each other. I have been listening to the audio books by Caesar Milan, the Dog Whisperer. He has some very valuable insights that I have had to employ with this shelter rescue dog.
Poor little Mercedes was abused. I was able to figure this out through some of her behaviors. When she does something wrong ( and believe me she knows when she has been bad) she goes and hides. When I went to get her out of her hiding place the first time, she growled at me and so I explained to her that I was not going to hurt her, that no one was going to hurt her anymore and that she can come out when she is ready. It took her 2 1/2 hours to come out from her hiding place and ask to watch TV with me. the next time she was bad she went and hid again, but this time, she came out in about 20 minutes. The last time she started to go and hide and then stopped short and turned around and came right to me. I could actually see her thinking and working through the process. “OK, I’m not supposed to be on the bed unless I’m invited. But I jumped up there anyway. Now she wants me off the bed, I was bad. I’d better go and hide before someone hits me. OH, she loves me, she doesn’t hit me. She doesn’t even yell at me. She just firmly tells me to get off the bed. I am safe. I think I ‘ll go and tell her I’m sorry.” And then she comes over to me and lays down and rolls over and all is forgiven and my little Mercedes has learned another lesson.
And then last night, when I quickly reached down to pick her up, she quickly blinked her eyes shut and flinched. Wow. An animal wouldn’t have flinched unless she had been hit before more than once. My poor little sweet (sometimes) girl. Someone must have been really mean to her. I cuddle her and reassure her and give her lots of affection. She has come a long ways in a short time. And I love her.