Sunday, March 06, 2011

Speedbump

Jeff and I are indulging in a lazy Sunday afternoon--together, for once, usually he works part of Sunday, but today he's making a new leather cover for his hatchet because the old one was "farby"--but to tell you the truth, loyal readers, we are a bit shaken around here.

Last night, after enjoying a delish fish dinner at a local dive called Captain Chuckamuck's with Jeff's folks, we returned home to two lazy beagles. I took them out for a walk while Jeff and his dad put together their new telescope, and then sat downstairs watching telly with the two dogs lazed out around me. Kizzy in the back bedroom, Lucy next to me on the sofa. When Jeff's parents came down to say good night, his dad bent over to pet Lucy, and she reared up and attacked his face.

Yeah, it happened just that fast. I don't even know exactly what went down, since I was turned toward the TV at the time, but she broke his glasses which scratched the bridge of his nose. Jeff collared her and put her in the bedroom. We tended to the cuts and apologized, but there is definitely a different feeling in the house. Lucy was adjusting well, fitting in with Kismet and our crazy schedules, she was interested and perky when we were walking, played like a small horse with Kismet, turning the house into a racetrack. And now this.

Jeff and I are suddenly on uncertain ground here. Uncertain because we cannot--cannot--have a dog that will attack people seemingly at random. Yet we adopted her knowing that her current personality was a product of an unknown past, and that we would have to work with her and her needs to help her fit in. I thought we were doing a good job, but all of a sudden we are faced with having a dog we don't trust in the house. I hate thinking about all the people who gave up on her before, but I also have to put my family first.

So for now we are starting over. I put in a call to the shelter where she was adopted from, and they were most helpful, offering practical advice ("get her off the sofa!") and numbers for dog behaviorists and trainers. We are trying to be more understanding and also more strict, showing her that we are in charge around here, and that whoever WE want in the house will be permitted. I don't know how this is going to end, but it makes me heartsick that my puppy doesn't yet feel safe enough in our family to be quiet, content and loving.

1 comment:

Samantha said...

I'm so so sorry to hear the news! And for it to happen so suddenly without any apparent provocation is indeed scary. But new faces, new smells, a sense of territory invaded, past abuses, a protectiveness of momma...who really knows.

You're in my thoughts. Here's hoping for patience and understanding. She is still new and adapting, despite her apparent earlier comfort. One step at a time. New quirks will undoubtedly rear their ugly heads. I hope you can discover the cause of her sudden behavior...and nip in the bud. She's got a good home...I hope she can keep it!