We got a new dog after 3 years of being pet-free, and she’s from the Humane Society. I searched for months and months in nearby shelters and online before finally reaching a decision.
The problem was that my mom is very picky when it comes to dogs.
Must be a shorthair, smooth fur. Must be 2-3 years old. Must be a large dog. Must be mixed with: Boxer, German Shepherd, Labrador/Labrador Retriever, American Staffordshire, or American Pit. No full breeds. Must be female. Must be calm.
The nitpicking over fur is due to her allergies and asthma…the rest, just personal preferences.
After so long, I finally spotted her — A Boxer/Rhodesian Ridgeback mix, age 3. Maybe. She was very calm in the kennel, didn’t bark despite all the chaos of a dog going on a walk, and let me rub her neck without fear of being nipped. I called my mom to have her come over and take a look and hopefully have her pass the fur-test on my mom’s arm, and she did. We immediately adopted her.
The problem with shelter dogs is that you don’t know what they’ve been through. What was her life like in the last 2-3 years? How did she end up in a shelter? Whatever her past was like, she loved the company of people. It seems like everybody is her best friend. She wasn’t allowed in certain rooms wherever she came from, as seen by her hesitation to enter my bedroom. She was already housebroken, and was completely comfy in the center of the living room floor.
Her only problem is her severe separation anxiety - when my mom leaves for work, she whines and howls, and has eaten the door frame to the point where she’s bleeding. I’m so scared that if I leave for my photo assignments, the gym, or even to visit family and friends, she’ll tear the house apart. We’re rapidly kennel training her [temporarily!! We hate kennels] so I can go to my cousin’s graduation on Thursday and back to work on Friday. I swear, it’s like having a newborn baby [which is ironically something I see each working day for a living. I feel the stress of the mothers now].
I sometimes feel bad for having adopted her. Here is this dog who is completely comfortable with humans, but she was lost. Who originally owned her? Why didn’t she have a collar, a license, a microchip, and why wasn’t she spayed? Do they miss her? Did they have other dogs? Will she try to run away to find them?
So many questions, but I have to let them rest. Symphony is here with us now. Aside from her anxiety, she has adjusted rather quickly, and we hope for many years with her.