Condo Blues: Meet Lacey

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Meet Lacey

Pitter patter pitter patter romp romp romp.


Say hello to our new dog Lacey!

Lacey Condo Blues
Hello, my name is Lacey. 

She’s recycled :)

Lacey is an 11 month old fearful Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Dachshund mix. Look at the long and luscious legs on this girl!

Her turns on are:

  • Playing ball
  • Any activity that burns off her never-ending energy
  • Chewing her toys (I’d rather her chew her toys than our shoes. It’s a good thing I know how to make braided chew toys! Get the tutorial here

It took Lacey seven days to make this toy an ex-duck. The girl has mad skillz.

  • Cuddling with her people on the sofa when she isn’t scared out of her mind about something
  • Food and earning treats
  • Jumping higher than we are used to and putting her paws on the kitchen table and places we didn’t know toy dogs could reach
  • Digging
  • Belly rubs and pets

Her turn offs are (and possibly more to follow):

  • Separation anxiety (we may never use the bathroom or shower alone again)
  • Men (she bit her former Dad and drew blood)
  • Other people
  • Other dogs
  • Sliding doors
  • The dishwasher
  • The dryer
  • Sudden noise
  • Boredom (any ideas to help with this are appreciated!)
  • The garage door
  • Garbage trucks
  • The sweeper and carpet cleaner

We have a lot to work on with Lacey but we have a lot to work with.

Lacey came to us through an amazing act of love.

Our spontaneous get away trip to Brigadoon with lederhosen (you can read about it on my food blog Lazy Budget Chef here) was what I needed to move forward after Blitzkrieg’s passing because I still felt adrift. Husband and I agreed to wait until after the holidays to look for a toy dog (small house) with behavioral issues we can help.  When we found out about Lacey Husband was ready to do any heavy lifting it will take to help Lacey with her fear of men.

We contacted her former family. This was a long process because they love Lacey so much. They were still trying to help her stop nipping her former Dad and biting her former dog brother’s back legs. Lacey made progress. 

We don’t know why Lacey is so fearful. Her former family adopted Lacey from a shelter as a puppy. She was shy. They had to teach her how to play with toys. They taught her how to sit and she sits like a champ (thank you.) If love could fix all of Lacey’s issues she would be a perfect dog because her former family loves her very much and tried as hard as they could to help her.

Unfortunately, Lacey went from nipping her former Dad to biting him and drawing blood. They made the agonizing decision to rehome Lacey with us for the safety of her former Dad and dog brother. We epathize with her. Husband and I were almost backed into that corner by someone with Blitzkrieg. Dog bites hurt. I have a scar from where I got stitches when Blitzkrieg bit me.

Fortunately, we found the help Blitzkrieg needed and had the means to do so ( read how in 12 Things I Do Not Spend Money On here.) Our pros made me realize dog behavioral rehabilitation is like the instructional design I do when creating an elearning course.  Our pros taught us how Dog World differs from Human World to help us help our boy. We also had unexpected help from our next door neighbor dog Alyiah. She helped Blitzkrieg with his fear of big dogs. It was amazing to watch dogs teach each other lessons only dogs can teach. We always hoped Blitzkrieg would be the Dog World teacher for the next troubled dog we brought into our home. Sadly he can't do it in person but we feel him here in spirt.

I have a feeling that somewhere, somehow Blitzkrieg 
had a hand in guiding us toward Lacey.

Lacey is a completely different dog from Blitzkrieg and that is what we need to help her. Her triggers are different and her motivation is different. Lacey likes different activities and rewards. The only thing that is the same is we now know helping Lacey with her fear is a marathon and not a sprint. We have to do this on Lacey’s schedule, not ours.

Lacey is doing well. Husband is thrilled he has a dog that likes to play ball and he gets to call us “my girls” the way I used to call him and Blitzkrieg “my boys.” I love the way Lacey leans into me (a sign of affection) at a moment’s notice. My nose is a little out of joint because she does not sleep on my side of the bedroom as Blitzkrieg did. It is funny how Lacey is afraid of men and sleeps on Husband’s side of the bedroom and Blitzkrieg was afraid of women and slept on my side of the bedroom.

We changed plans and gave ourselves a family Valentine’s Day gift – we called our dog behaviorist to start training! We took Lacey to the pet store for socialization and to buy the required buckle collar and six foot leash. Yep, even pet parents have to buy school supplies.

Since Lacey is still adjusting to her new home and we aren't sure if we can trust her alone in the house just yet, Husband and I stayed in instead of going out for dinner. We sat on the sofa sipping Riesling to toast Lacey’s half dachshund side. Lacey snuggled between us on the sofa. We chatted and said we didn’t realize just how sad this house and family had become without a dog.

We are thankful for this amazing gift and ready to take the long journey to her recovery. We are grateful her former family was brave enough to do what’s best for Lacey even though it broke their hearts. We are in your debt. We will love her. We will take care of your girl.

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