Lacey is officially fostering with us. Her people brought her to our home last night, and we spent about an hour letting her meet Glimmer and Violet (our dog and cat) and explore what is going to be her main home for the next several months. Her people brought their autistic son with them, as well, and Lacey showed just how devoted to him she is, staying close to him and helping him calm down when the excitement of everything overwhelmed and distressed him. He knows Lacey will be staying with us, but he doesn’t fully understand that, and it’s as hard on him as it is on Lacey.
During the visit, Lacey showed me two very important things: a very strong resistance to the leash, and a very strong fear of the kennel. She also exhibited intense insecurity when her humans were out of her line of sight, when I was out of sight after they left, and with other things, like going down the stairs to the door when she needed to potty.
In Lacey’s defense, this little 8-week-old pup has been through a lot in the past week. She’s had to deal with losing her siblings one by one as they’ve gone to their forever homes. She’s had to deal with being handled by multiple people – some she liked, and some she didn’t like. She’s had to deal with the stress of traveling in a moving vehicle, and then, she had to deal with the stress of going into entirely unfamiliar surroundings. Then, just when she was starting to find her feet with her people, she had yet another change of surroundings to deal with that included another dog and a cat. On top of that, she has no idea about her place in this pack, and she’s confused and uncertain and just a little bit scared of it all. Everything has happened very fast for this little puppy and she hasn’t had any time to adjust to anything.
Now, Lacey has a chance to settle in and settle down. She’s not going anywhere for at least the remainder of this week. She needs this adjustment time, and she needs the calm, quiet environment she’s now living in to help her do that. Her training will start with a proper introduction to the leash and to the kennel, and go from there. Beginning last night, Lacey started learning the sound of the clicker, and she learned very fast that it means she did something right. If nothing else, Lacey is very eager to please. She works hard to figure out what got her rewarded, and then she repeats that behavior. She’s a very smart little girl.
Photos and videos will be coming soon. Stay tuned…