Labradoodle & Goldendoodle Forum
I remember Jane wrote a blog stating that it is hard to be Murph.... I have to feel you, Murph...
I understand. Because it really sucks to be Charlie, too.
Last couple of weeks, I have taken Pinot alone to the lake because of Charlie's recovery from the injury. She cannot swim too much or walk too much as of yet....
One week, Pinot and I walked about 14 miles along the peninsula of lake Erie. During the walk, I encounter many normal things that would have freaked Charlie out, but for a normal dog like Pinot, it is just a normal things that has no need to be freaked out about. They are things like drifted wood in odd shape, kites, seagulls, bicycles passing by, sound of jet ski and other boats, children, frisbies, etc....
Pinoit just walked on by, rarely paying attention to them, allowed children to pet him, greeted other people, etc...
Watching Pinot enjoying the walk, I just imagined how stressful Charlie's life may be... For her to be so afraid and anxious about little things like odd shaped drifted wood....( She would have been scare to death of it. She would have barked at it, backed off of it, etc... ) I have been accostom to walking with Charlie, constantly scanning the environment to limit her stress and reactions, that became almost like a second nature to me. I never realized that these normal things like kite, etc... are not concerns to the regular dogs!!
I just feel so sad for her.
One of my autistic client ( 17 years old )said " Kyoko, did you said that one of your dogs is kind of like autistic and worries about a lot of things? Poor thing.... I know exactly how she feels..."
I feel sad for her, too. But I also feel very glad that she has an owner who is so caring and empathetic. I know it has to make things a lot easier for her to have you on her side. :)
She came to me by some sort of error, when I got her at 7 weeks old. But I truly believe that she meant to be with me. I feel that otherwise she could have ended up in shelter being classified as " Unadoptable" and we all know what that means...... She is so smart and is a good girl once she knows what it is and who it is.....
There is no doubt in my mind that she was meant to be with you. :)
Kyoko, I don't remember. did you ever try Charlie on medication? sometimes it can help a lot with the anxiety and let people and animals lead a more normal life.
I discussed about it with her holistic vet. ( I went to this vet about an hour away for her hip injury. ) She seem to be very knowligible about it. Iam seriously considering about putting her on medication once her hip is fully healed....
I feel badly for Charlie too. But she has you to love and care for her which is the best there is. It is nice that you also have Pinot so that you can have some normal dog walking fun too which refreshes your spirit.
Thank you, Nancy. It has been so long... Having this new puppy made me really realized her stress level.... I became acostom to how she is and I guess began normalizing her behavior.... ( Butter was really old, so his behavior didnt really count... )
Kyoko I do know exactly how you feel. There was a time when I felt so sorry for Murphy...it broke my heart that he couldn't just be a "normal dog". I thought of all the things he was missing out on. He has made lots of progress, but he's never going to be completely free of some of his anxiety...now he just knows how to control it most of the time. I've come to realize that he really is okay because he has me and feels safe and loved in our home and now even outside in many non distracted environments. For him it's fine that he's not able to go to highly stimulating places....he's happy being home. This weekend there's a huge celebration for the opening of a new off-leash dog park in a neighboring town. There will be all kinds of fun things for dogs, including swimming. This type of situation would put Murph over the edge, so I'll just take Guinness. I'll spend some "fun time" with Murph at home, and he'll love that way more than the "dog party". I've really come to terms with it and I celebrate Murph for who he is. You may know that I have a special needs son. Some of the feelings are the same. I have to struggle all the time not to feel sorry for him because if I do somehow I'm diminishing the exceptional and amazing gift that he is to me and everyone whose life he touches. Keep your chin up, girlfriend. You are not alone and your Charlie is more okay than you realize....he has you.
Thanks Jane. You know, I am very closed to this client of mine, who is autistic, and I just love him for who he is, and appreciate him for who he is. Sure, he has some weird things going on, like he would look back often while walking, because he thinks about Tsunami, possibly coming after us. He knows rationally, there are no large body of water here in Pittsburgh, therefore no Tsunami. But, he just worries about it. I just continue the walk with him when he does this, knowing what he is worried about it, and make small statement like, " I think we are OK. " His dad has really hard time accepting him for who he is, and power struggle, attempting to make him who he is not. I see this. And I know this. But I feel guilty for not taking Charlie places, where Pinot can get some socialization and fun time. ( Right now, I can excuse myself because Charlie is still recovering from her hip injury.) and I feel bad for Pinot when we avoid going places. So I really appreciate your thoughts. I am thinking about discussing the possible medication with this holistic vet. Charlie has gone through numerous trainng and rally competitions, etc... So, she is very obedient, and attempt to control herself. ( Instead of lunging and screaming her head off at the passing dog, she would sit and scream her head off at the passing dog. ) I need to tell myself the things I would say to my client's parents and focus on her positives and appreciate her for who she is, and be OK that she does not like dog party!! Thanks again.
She had a follow up appointment with the holistic vet today. She is clear on her hip, so we did a blood work to start her on anxiety meds. ( I forgot what she said she was prescribing for her. ) I am kind of nervous, but I am going to give it a try. As a human therapist, I know that it woud take a couple of weeks before it gets well into the system and begin showing the effects, and meds alone is not the answer. Along with the meds, behavior modification plan will be needed. I am going back doing some BAT ( Behavioral Adjustment Training )...... Very very nervous.... Kind of scared... ( What a hypocrite....I speak positively about meds to my clients...)