Monday, August 23, 2010

I Traumatized My Puppy

Or, at least I thought I had. What did I do you ask?

I took Boo to the groomer for a bath and to have his nails trimmed.

I did this not because I can't bathe him myself, I can. And I do. But I cannot, no way, shape or form, get him to allow me to trim those nails. I've tried and he acts as if I am about to cut his foot off!  And, he tries to bite me. Heck I even tried to put a little bit of Carmex on his upper lip that he had licked a raw spot on, and as soon as he tasted it, he snapped at me!

So this pet groomer opened shop at the entrance to my neighborhood recently, and off we went to trim those god-awful talons that have been shredding my legs.

One major problem.  Apparently I did not socialize this almost two year old pup.

Which is odd, because in all the animals I've ever had, well, social skills never seemed to be a problem. Apparently it is with this mix of Heinz 57 breed we adopted, because although he grew up around my lab Sally, the cats, and my husband, based on his behavior at our own front door, he doesn't like other animals and he apparently doesn't care for other people either - not the UPS guy, the mailman, or any of the neighbors.

As soon as we got out of the car at the groomer, he heard another dog barking inside and off he went. The owner of the shop, had a stare-down with him as he barked like an insane animal.  Finally, after what seemed like an eternity of very loud and aggressive barking, he caved. I put him on the floor, leash in hand, and he started trying to crawl up my leg, burying his head in the crook of my knee.  By this time I was this short of crying myself!  Thankfully the owner made friends with him, picked him up, assured me he would be alright and took him away as I gave the receptionist my information.  There were several other dogs there ahead of us, so I asked how long it would be and she said an hour or maybe more.

It wasn't 30 minutes later I got the call that he was ready to be picked up.

When I arrived he was barking and I asked if he had been barking the whole time. That would certainly explain the speed of his grooming experience.  I thought,
"Oh no. I am one of those people."
Well, the rest of the day, he hated me. Maybe hate is a strong word, but he definitely had an attitude, because not only did he snap at me several times, he actually bit me a couple of times!  This is the first "spirited" breed of dog that I've ever had - every dog I've ever owned has been much more docile and calm. Now, don't get me wrong, he is a good dog. He comes when I call. He listens to direction. He is otherwise well-behaved. But he is very touchy when it comes to being restrained in any way, or if he perceives any harm. Trouble is, he perceives harm where there is none.

Thank goodness by morning he had seemingly forgotten all about the experience and was back to his old self.

I'm afraid though, we may need some obedience classes.



  1. Hi Mary,
    I have "one" of those dogs too...he will be 3 in Oct. He doesn't like anybody but the people in our house. Barks at everything and everybody...we got him in Dec and the only people he ever saw was us, and when the snow melted, the kids and motorcylces and trucks came out he didn't handle it well. We have never taken him to the groomer..he could use a proper trim..and the vet does the nails I don't know how. I do the nails at home in between them growing in talons.. It takes 2 of husband holds him and I trim..with lots of rides or walks to the park forget it...they are funny creatures our little fur babies, and personalities just like we do...yours in a cutey pie little fellow...

  2. Thanks Faith! He really is a sweetie - with us anyway - though he does not like to be hugged or cuddled. Guess I have the cats for that! I've never had a dog so temperamental like this - so it's a bit different for me. Even with the two of us, we can't trim his nails. He thinks we are gonna hurt him, so he bites!

  3. Oh no! Next time you try to take him in he'll go bezerk! I got charged extra for my dog cause it took 2 people to hold him while he was groomed. Stinker.

  4. I feel for you Mary. I have a german shepard and a black Lab, both gentle girls. Take them to the vet for their physicals and they both went wild barking and howling. I was mortified! I couldn't get them to stop. Needless to say we were ushered into the exam room quickly.....

    I love the photo of your sweet baby

  5. You know Cyndy... I hadn't looked at it like that, but you have a very good point. Fast service!! :) Thanks, Boo really is a sweetie. He's just a bit of a loner I guess LOL.


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