We could all use a little more of it.
And my dogs make sure I have opportunities to drown in it.
I usually think I know my dogs pretty well, and I do. But making assumptions about a dog’s behavior when that behavior has not been proofed for a while, well, there in lies the rub. And the bruises. To both skin and ego.
I have fostered a few dogs in my time, I’ve taken in some of the most petrified, broken dogs I have ever met and brought them back to finding joy in life and trust in people. My dogs have helped in the process.
What I haven’t done is bring in an adult, self-assured, happy dog. Till this past weekend.
The older dogs were fine with her. Curious, a little pushy, but fine.
Hagar wanted blood. Hagar and this lovely girl took an instant and intense dislike towards one another, the kind that only escalates with time.
Did I screw up the introductions? Probably. I hadn’t been expecting to bring her home with me right away and I really hadn’t prepared. But I don’t think it would have made much difference to Hagar. If she hadn’t been so darned happy and self-assured, he might have been just fine. If I hadn’t brought her home in the crate that he probably considers his property… lots of ifs.
The bottom line is that I cannot currently trust Hagar with any ‘new’ dog in the house. That’s okay, at least for now. I’ll work with him to try to find out whether this was a one-off or an ingrained attitude. And I know who to ask about how to work through the problem.
But in the meantime, I am reminded that they are independent minds who will occasionally surprise me. And keep me from making too many assumptions.
I hope all of my mistakes will be bloodless.