Monday, 11 December 2017

When life gives you lemons, don’t just make lemonade – stop buying more lemons!

I was in an accident last week. Another driver took a chance on a side junction, cut across the traffic and went straight into the side of my van. We were really lucky because neither of us was going that fast, but it was terrifying for me and the collie girls.

The aftermath with police, ambulances, recovery vehicles, having to find a friend who could come and rescue the girls – noisy, unfamiliar, lots of stressed people.

The van is away for repairs (I hope!) and we’ve finally sorted out a temporary replacement.

Bronte has taken it all in her stride. Being deaf and part blind means life can be pretty unpredictable and she generally shrugs and moves on.

Freya is really struggling, but then this is the fourth time she’s been in some kind of vehicle collision. Every time we’ve managed to work through it, but it gets harder each time.

Passing traffic noises are scary again, she’s on high alert in every situation and when Freya saw the replacement van outside my house she panicked and tried to flee. That was just seeing the van, we weren’t going near it or unlocking it.

Having a positive attitude to life and turning challenges into opportunities is one way of coping with the ups and downs the universe throws at us. So yes, when life gives you lemons – making lemonade can be an excellent choice.

But the truth is being optimistic isn’t enough.

Using positive affirmations might help your attitude, but what needs to change is your behaviour.

So when an avalanche of lemons lands on your head, the smart thing to do is cancel your monthly order of lemons…

I’ve organised my work schedule and personal plans so that barring emergency vet trips, Freya doesn’t have to go anywhere near a vehicle for at least the next month.

While I know I could ask her to go in a car, and she would try her best for me, it’s not worth pushing our luck and adding to the stress she is already under.

We’re going to be using supportive medication, plus all of the training techniques that have worked so well for us in the past to build Freya’s confidence around vehicles.

Freya has a pretty good set of resources to draw on (she adores crate training, knows that loud noises equal treats, enjoys scentwork, learns fast) but most importantly she knows that I won’t force her to do scary stuff.

If you need help with an avalanche of lemons, let us know!

Have a safe week

Morag and the collie girls

PS Looking forward to seeing some of you at our Xmas social on Thursday where the only lemons will be round the edge of my tequila glass

PPS Well Connected Canine is taking some well-earned time off over Christmas to spend time with
our dogs and our own families. We’ll be closing on Thursday 21 st December and re-opening on
Thursday 4th January. If you do need to speak with us before Christmas, make sure you get in touch
soon - it’s creeping up fast!

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