Cynthia, Alex, Bella, and I went for a walk together. At the beginning of the walk, Alex was on my left side while Bella was on Cynthia’s right side. We stopped for a couple of minutes so they can do their business, but they were not allowed to interact with each other yet. Because Alex cannot walk a lot we had to stop after we walked for a little while to give them an opportunity to sniff each other. Bella’s body language was relaxed and curious. So far so good.
Once we got home, we went straight to the deck where Bella, still on leash and collar, was able to interact with Alex. What did I realize? Bella has no doggie manners. She almost stepped on Alex a few times. What did Alex do? Nothing. And that is why Alex is perfect for me and for what I do which is board, train, and work on behavioral issues many dogs have. After a couple of minutes, we brushed their hair and wiped their paws and proceeded to go inside.
Bella’s body language indoors changed. She became tensed and zeroed in on Alex. I redirected that behavior by getting her attention and she was fine.
- Bella’s interaction with Alex outside was great. She did a play bow inviting Alex to play
- Once inside, her body language became tense and on guard. She lowered her head, body was tense, stared at Alex and looked ready to go for her
- Even though I was not crazy about her body language indoors, Bella responded well or I should say amazingly well to voice corrections and commands
- Although she did great while playing with other dogs at the shelter, now she has to learn to live in peace with other dogs in a home environment
- She has to learn doggie manners. She cannot step over other dogs
- On the deck, Bella showed signs of stress, pacing back and forth, but she relaxed after a few minutes when she saw Alex sunbathing
This is just the beginning for Bella. She has a long way to go and this is why a shelter dog, in my opinion, has a better chance to find her forever home when she has been fostered for a while. Why? Living in a home environment teaches her how to be a member of a pack and that is something that she cannot learn in a shelter. I have great admiration for the people who work in shelters. They do an amazing job, and they can always use our help whether this comes in the form of donations, volunteer time, fostering dogs, etc. Have a great week.