Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Daisy's everywhere!

Daisy had a surprise guest this week. Her friend, Daisy Mae (a black Lab), came to stay for a couple of days while her "Mommie" had a little baby boy. 

It's been awhile since my Daisy (also called "Boo Boo Bear" or "Boo Boo's ") and I had seen Daisy Mae; perhaps as far back as October or November. They first met about a year ago at the Alimagnet dog park in Burnsville. Her mom and I had started talking after realizing that our dogs had the same name (which can get quite confusing!). Who knew that her Daisy Mae was the same dog I had walked at the shelter as a young pup? She had grown quite a bit since I had last seen her, but it was obvious that she was very happy in her new home. Her parents really love her and spend a lot of quality time with her. She goes to the dog park once a day (sometimes twice a day), and she gets plenty of walks and belly rubs. She's a well-rounded dog - good with humans and other dogs.

I was pleased to see that my Boo Boo Bear was happy to see Daisy Mae and seemed pretty comfortable with her. This past summer, when Daisy Mae and her mom had come to spend the day with us (gardening) Boo Boo Bear was quite nervous. She spent most of her time sitting right by my side. Of course, I would encourage her to go play but she would only wander a few feet and then come back and sit next to me. She does that when she's nervous.

So, it was with great relief that I saw my Daisy Boo Boo Bear so excited to see an old friend. They got along extremely well together. They hung out at the dog park, searched for treats in the snow together (a game they both love to play) and slept on the couch together. It reminded me of when Aspen (my last dog) was here. Daisy used to looked to Apsen for guidance on how to act like a dog. Aspen set the tone for everything: jumping on the couch to take a nap, hanging out in the backyard, riding in the car, going to the pet store, approaching strangers, etc. Boo Boo Bear really relied on her for guidance and direction (just a side note to other owners of puppy  mill dogs - having another more experienced dog can make a big difference in a dog's rehabilitation). 

That's why I have toyed with the idea of getting another dog - one that is older, and more experienced in living as a dog with humans. I'm constantly asking myself whether I am helping Daisy or hurting her by not getting her another friend. Part of me thinks that her rehabilitation would be much easier on her if I were to get another dog, but the other part of me is worried that making the wrong choice could have a long-lasting devastating effect on her. 

Watching Boo Boo Bear with Daisy Mae made me realize that there is no easy answer. While she enjoyed having a companion around for a few days, she also spent some time hanging out in her kennel (her "safe spot") whenever Daisy Mae would bark at a sudden noise or get interested in a bone she had. So, while it was nice (if a bit confusing) to have Daisy's everywhere for a few days, it was also, once more, a time to think and observe...A dog for Daisy Boo Boo Bear? Or, Daisy Boo Boo Bear as a dog on her own? The question remains unanswered...for now.

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