Friday, January 23, 2009

Daisy's New friend

I had to write a quick post to catalog a new Daisy experience. Yesterday, Daisy made a new friend, one that she was not only instantly comfortable with, but one that she seemed to know on a deeper level.

Because I am a dog walker and pet sitter, Daisy often meets new dogs (it's a requirement before they can come stay in my home). Usually, when Daisy meets a new pet sitting client, she will come to see who it is and then she will pace; jumping on and off the couch or circling the coffee table in nervous excitement. On some occasions  she will even go and sit in her kennel until she feels more comfortable. 

Last night Daisy had a new friend stop by to meet her. Mya is a beautiful Aussie with a great personality and smarts to boot. She's a little bit older than most of the dogs Daisy meets, which is nice since I think Daisy is more comfortable with older dogs.

As Mya came up to the door with her mom, Daisy jumped off the couch and walked excitedly to the door, tail wagging. Unusual? Yes. She usually sits on the couch and cranes her neck to see who's coming. Then, she drops her head in a submissive pose. 

This time she was at the door before Mya had even come in the door. She was excited to meet her new friend and her tail was wagging. When Mya came inside Daisy didn't run to the couch or start pacing, instead she went right up to her and said "Hi".  She also did not act timid or afraid of Mya's mom like she does with most new people she meets.  She approached her pretty quickly and even let her pet her later in the evening! t was a first.

In fact, Daisy acted differently the whole time Mya and her mom were there:
  • She came into the kitchen to get a treat when I offered Mya one - not something she does (even when it's just her and I!)
  • She stayed in the living room while Mya explored the house or stood next to her mom. Again, not a normal behavior with Daisy. Usually she would be pacing or sitting in her kennel.
  • She felt so comfortable with Mya that she even fell asleep on the couch while Mya was in the house - how's that for comfortable?
  • But, what shocked me most is that she went outside and came back inside with Mya and her mom in front of or behind her and she didn't get scared or too afraid to come in.  She even came inside with Mya's mom sitting right inside the door. She doesn't even do that with my friends and family! Usually she starts circling the car in the garage until everyone is away from the door or goes into the living room. How weird is that?
I am not sure if it was Mya or Mya's mom (or both) that made her so comfortable, but it totally floored me. It also made me wonder...Did Daisy recognize a kindred spirit in Mya
Or, was it the calm demeanor and quiet confidence that Mya's mom displayed? Or, maybe Mya reminded her of Aspen and that's why she felt so comfortable with her. I don't know what it was, but it sure was cool to see her so calm and confident. I'd like to bottle whatever it was and use it the future whenever Daisy is afraid and uncertain. The dog trainer in me is fascinated. I want to replay every moment so I can figure out what the key factor was that made this situation different from any other. It's simply a mystery. 

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