oh, sweet puppy dog
we’ve ruined you already
so sorry ’bout that
We’ve been training Tucker to walk on a leash. At 10 weeks, he’s getting the hang of it (uh, so to speak), and we keep the walks short and mostly on the grass so his little bones don’t get jiggled around on the concrete.
We had him out with us on Friday night, as we walked around the block, and lo! There was a lab puppy to visit with. Tucker hasn’t been around any other dogs since we got him a few weeks ago, so we naturally thought he’d be thrilled to romp around with a buddy for a few minutes.
Tucker, all 3.6 pounds of him, when positively Cujo apeshit when that lab puppy came over to sniff him. It was startling how fast he went from jaunty little pup on a walk to scared out of his mind snarly teeth-bared psycho. Holy shit.
The lab pup and his owner were totally non-plussed and actually kind of amused by the whole thing, but my husband and I weren’t. A scaredy fear aggressive dog is not on our list of wants right now.
i don’t know if it’s a puppy thing or a breed thing (he’s a mini Australian Shepherd) or an "I’ve just been to the vet leave me alone" thing or what, but it really freaked me out. We want our pup to be excited about the world, not scared by it, and especially not scared of other dogs. How will we learn to play frisbee at the dog park if he morphs into Cujo every time another dog tries to sniff him?
Our vet asked us to wait to start obedience classes until after Tucker has his rabies shot in three weeks, but that was before we had the psycho incident. I’m, frankly, afraid to wait three more weeks, if he’s developing some kind of phobia or something. Maybe he was just in a bad mood or the other dog was giving off a vibe or something, but I don’t think so. We took Tucker to the dog park on Saturday, and though he didn’t get snarly, he did tuck his tail and hide under the stroller when other dogs came by. This makes me want to get him into a class with a behaviorist right away. Maybe I’ve watched too much of the Dog Whisperer for my own good, I don’t know. I do know that I don’t want my pup to go through life being scared out of his mind every time another dog comes by. We have to nip that shit in the bud.
Poor guy. I have no idea where the fear comes from, but I hope it’s early enough to fix. I’m telepathically sending him some tiny brass balls. But puppy kindergarten will help, too, I think.