Out From Under the Umbrella

playing in the rain


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Is There a Dog Whisperer in the House?

We’re walking along on a clear, crisp, day when all of sudden, for reasons I cannot perceive her ears peel back, she cowers, and I can see the fear in her face.   She throws her nose in the air for a sniff.

Back pedaling ensues.  Pulling in the opposite direction.  She knows the way home and she’s making a b-line for it.  Full steam ahead, dragging me and her companion with.

I stop.  I have her sit. She even cowers from me.  I smooth her.  I try to reassure her.  I give her a minute to calm herself.  Then I say, “Let’s go, Dottie,” in the most excited way possible.

I try to pull her out of it.  Encouraging her to come along, “Come on, sweet girl.  It’s alright.  Nothing to worry about.”

Not.having.any.of.it.

This hasn’t always been the case.  She loves her walks and the minute she hears me moving the harness she happily runs up with a smile on her face.  She stands still while I put it on her and once I’ve said, “Good girl,” her tail wags her whole body she’s so excited.  Then she goes to the door and sits to wait for me to open it.  “Good girl,” again I say.

Not even five minutes later, here we are, in full panic mode that nothing will calm except the shelter of home.

Just a few days ago I discovered that she’s suddenly afraid of birds.  Whatever next?  An eighty-five pound dog afraid of a few chirping birds. She’s always been afraid of bad weather and gunfire. But birds?!?  No.

Just when I thought she was nearly fully recovered from her neuroses another one pops up.

The worst bit is I don’t really even know how to help her.  I feel terrible that she has such anxiety.

I won’t lie.  It’s doing my head in.  She’s even become afraid of going into the garden when it’s dark.  She “hides” behind the butterfly bush if I do manage to get her to go out.

This hiding is ridiculous.  It’s a tiny bush.  She’s huge.

Do any of my dog pals have any suggestions?