If you’ve been following this blog for awhile, you know all about Lacey, and the journey we have all been on with her since the beginning of this year. Which means you also know about her bullying tendencies and how hard we’ve all had to work to teach her not to be that way.
Tanya has been away since Wednesday, leaving Matt and their autistic son Jake to hold down the fort until she comes home – which will be later this morning – and while she’s been gone, Lacey has become something of a terror. She’s been getting into trouble almost daily: She’s been taking food off the table, climbing onto the table to get to other areas that might have food on them, she got hold of a bag of Halloween candy and ate the entire thing, she peed in the house instead of alerting Matt that she had to go…. She’s been a very bad girl – and a very lucky one: She ate all that candy, but she didn’t get sick…
Yesterday, Tanya called me. Matt was at the end of his rope, and could I please take Lacey for a couple of hours just to give him a break? I said sure. We loaded Glimmer into the car, went over and got Lacey, and then, we went to the dog park. It’s the first time in a long time the two girls were going to be together, and we hoped that having so much space to run around in would prevent Lacey from bullying Glimmer, and then both girls could have some fun. Our girl needed to play, too, but Lacey has always made that difficult to impossible because of her bullying.
WELL… Not only did Lacey not bully Glimmer, she actually gave Glimmer respect. And because of that, the two were able to play with each other instead of compete against each other for our affection. We were overwhelmed with joy to see the girls getting along so well. Another couple even came into the enclosure with their small dog, and for the first time in nearly four years, Glimmer did not get anxious or try to avoid the strange dog. Instead, she just hung out with us and watched Lacey and the new dog play “chase-me”. It was absolutely amazing.
We ran Lacey by tossing a chuck-it ball for almost an hour and a half. Both she and Glimmer slept all the way home. And even when we got home, Lacey was still so pooped that she couldn’t even hold her head up when she curled up in Glimmer’s bed. 😀
Tanya will return home some time this morning, and life with Lacey “Little” will get back on track. But we have a lot of work to do with Matt, to help him become calm-assertive so that Lacey will give him the same respect she gives to Tanya. It’s always about energy and body language with dogs. Lacey is a dominant and very stubborn dog; she needs strong, firm leadership at all times. Matt needs to learn how to be that kind of leader.
Have a great day, everyone. Remember to stay calm and lead on….