Wednesday, 20 February 2019

How long did it take you to fall in love (with your dog)?

The overwhelming feeling of warm fuzzies that melts your heart while you watch them sleep, or the oxytocin burst if you prefer!

Either way, you know what it feels like when you have that rush of sheer love for your dog.

Even if they have just eaten something indescribable...

Apparently it’s #NationalLoveYourPetDay today, which is weird because this topic has been in my head since Saturday!

So how long did it take you to fall in love with your dog?

I mean really fall for them, not just think they were cute?

During our Monday team meeting I asked Laura and Clare what their experiences had been.

Laura adopted Seamus last year as a young adolescent. He’s a Beagle x Cavalier, and it’s fair to say Seamus and his shouting has been a challenge! In those first few weeks Laura phoned me more than once in tears because he just would not stop barking…. But after a few months, there was that solid warm feeling of love.

Scout came to Clare as a wee pup, and apparently his goofy happy face won her over in a couple of weeks!

As for me, it always seems to take me about 6 months or more to really fall for a new dog.

It’s not that I don’t like them or appreciate them to begin with, but it doesn’t feel like I really know who they are. That sense of knowing them deep inside, how their individual personality feels when I think of them. The quiet companionship that has a different flavour depending which dog I’m concentrating on.

Learning about their personality and special quirks is an integral part of falling in love with my dogs.  I will always think of my dogs as individuals first, but breed characteristics can be important too.

Adding in Laird the HPR (hunt point retrieve) to my collie girls has been a whole new challenge, plus he’s an adolescent boy. I think we’re making good progress despite the teenage months...

Breed specific behaviour is a tricky topic – and it’s important not to lose sight of your dog as a unique individual. But we ignore those pre-wired behaviours at our cost….

You can listen to Clare and I chatting about breed specific behaviours in gundogs, doodle/ocker crosses and herding breeds in this wee video – we’d love to know what you think too!

I hope you’re enjoying living with your companion animals (pets!) as much as we are, and don’t forget if you need any help to tweak that relationship we’re always at the end of an email.

Morag, the big beast and the collie girls 


PS Want to spend more time working with your dog’s natural instincts rather than fighting against them?

Why not try a half-day workshop with us:

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