Friday, February 15, 2008

Did I mention Spooky was perfect? It did take a bit of time...

*No seperation anxiety
*Not a storm or fireworks phob
*Would let me sleep in!

Some other things I forgot to mention about her was she was fine to be alone meaning she didn't have seperation anxiety, we lived in an apartment for the first 6-8 months we were together and did just fine when I had to go to work, other than that I took her EVERYWHERE else. I remember after I had adopted her and had chosen an apartment I read they only allowed 50 or 60 lb dogs to live there and Spooky was a good 70 lbs! So I drove to the office to talk to management and they laughed and didn't believe me when I told them how much she weighed and they all just fell in love with her. They had no problems with Spooky:-) nor did anyone ever.

Most people don't believe me or just don't remember, but Spooky was TERRIFIED of men when I first adopted her and she was TERRIFIED of other breeds (imagine if she had met Limo back then :-o ) I took her to Petsmart daily as there was one about a 5 mins drive away from us. She would freeze, that cury tail would be so far tucked and if another dog wanted to smell her or get close? You could forget it! She embarrised me A LOT when we would go in there :-) A great dane sniffed her behind once and she screamed and collapsed because her claws came out on the slick floor. Our routine was to enter Petsmart and go directly to the treat isle, open up a bag of yummy treats and make the rounds around the store. Everytime we saw a dog I gave her a treat and kept moving. One time there was a lady with a VERY well trained collie and we got to talking from a far (Spooky wouldn't even look at her collie) and she asked if I wanted her to put her collie in a sit stay and let Spooky come to him and sniff him. I said sure and the collie was a saint, he just sat there when Spooky scrambled up a pile of dogfood bags to get away from him :-) I don't remember what happened next, I probably picked Spooky up off the dogfood bags, thanked the woman and went home. Wow, it's so WEIRD to think of these days as she did not leave the world as the same dog she came in as. I think the key to my success with helping Spooky out of her shell was I pretty much tried to ignore her dramatic behaviors when she was terrified of something. Meaning I wouldn't baby her and love on her as to praise this behavior. I have no idea when it was, but something happened and it was like a switch went off that she was suddenly fine and happy about going to Petsmart- it was a few years later, BUT it still happened. Eventually she got to start picking out her own toys! and she would carry it around in the store with her.

Spooky HATED men at first. (The pic of Spooky and the scary man was actually taken AFTER she had gotten used to men :-) I just think it's a funny pic- That guy is an animal lover and she was very comfortable around him and liked him even though the pic says otherwise :-p I brought her to work several times and one morning they wanted to dress her up in their work clothes :-) I don't really know why...lol
But she wasn't always comfortable around men.
My mom and I could be loving on her and playing with her and my dad would walk in the room and she would just cower, shut down and try and hide in a corner. I don't even remember how we worked on this though? I do know that the photo I have of my parents and Spooky is the first time she ever jumped on the couch with my dad:-) Hence the photo op. She disliked the few guys I dated during that time too. I can remember this particular guy reaching out to pet her and she growled at him and was very leery of him like she didn't trust him.

Eventually she loved everyone though, well except for the pest exterminator. Matt and I sorta slummed for a year and a half and rented a house near work, from the company we worked for. It was an OLD old house, some of the floor was uneven in places and the best part was the 7ft ceiling:-) LOL, I'm not kidding I would get dressed in the mornings and hit my knuckles on the ceilings. Boy was it worth it though. Being so close to work allowed me to come home and pick Spooky up EVERYDAY after work and take her to the farm with me. I love the fact I was able to do that in her last year. So being a very old house, it needed to be sprayed for bugs every month. I would meet the pest control guy get Spooky out of the house so 1 she wouldn't have to smell the stuff and 2 I really was worried she might bite the man! She HATED him, even when I would talk to him outside and try and convince her he was OK she was not having it. She'd growl and be very leery. She had a nice, deep, firocious growl and bark.


1 comment:

Jennifer said...

I do remember seeing Spooky climb PetsMart shelves to get away from scary non-greyhounds. You guys brought out the best in each of you.

Jen