Leaving Pyrrha for the weekend

How could you leave ME?

We are going to Indiana this weekend for my paternal grandfather’s memorial service. My dad’s family is where I got my dog-crazy genes from, and they all encouraged us to bring our latest addition along. However, after some further thought, I feel like a 10-hour car trip to a place with lots of unfamiliar people (and one unfamiliar and shy dog, belonging to my aunt and uncle) would be way too much stress, for everyone. It will be better for all involved parties if Pyrrha stayed behind.

Thankfully, Pyrrha’s former foster from SGSR is a SAINT and has graciously agreed to take her back for the weekend. This is the best of all possible worlds, as it’s a place (and a pack of GSDs) that Pyrrha is already familiar with. I am so, so thankful that this could work out. It eases my anxiety a lot.

I, of course, really hate to leave her now, especially as I feel like we had a big breakthrough last night: It was the first time that Pyrrha actually tried to play with US!

Back story: I’d been really discouraged with her over the past few days, as it seemed like she’d been regressing and getting even more shy about things that formerly didn’t stress her out (like going in the backyard, or wanting to be in the room with us while we made dinner, etc.). But for the past three days, we’ve had daily thunderstorms, and I think those have only contributed to her anxiety, even though she hasn’t shown any serious signs of storm phobia. I was even starting to feel like we made a mistake, that she’d never get better, that we were not right for her, and so on…

But then last night, after our dinner guests left and we moved her crate into the guest room, she suddenly perked up. It was like her personality did a 180. We sat down on the loveseat to watch her, and she suddenly gave us a play bow and clambered up into my lap. She started kissing our toes, trying to playfully mouth our hands, and even played with her squeaky bunny toy–for the first time! Those few moments made all of my doubt and discouragement fade away. I was reminded that there is a happy dog in there, that she is going to come out of her shell, and that she still has so much to learn and gain confidence about.

She’s going to be OK. We’re going to be OK. I have to keep reminding myself to slow down and be patient. As of today, she’s only been with us for a week. I shouldn’t expect her to magically transform into a stable, happy dog so quickly. She’ll get there. So, here’s to hoping that she still likes us after we get back from this weekend!


9 thoughts on “Leaving Pyrrha for the weekend

  1. I’ve been reading your blog for the better part of a year and I’m so glad you’ve finally adopted such a wonderful, beautiful dog! Having adopted my dog (my first ever) less than a year ago, I am really looking forward to the updates on how you and Pyrrha learn about and adjust to each other.

  2. I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your grandfather. I agree, Pyrrha is better off avoiding all that activity for now. It’s great her former foster is willing to take her back for short time.

    Congratulations on finally bringing home the dog you’ve always wanted! She is beautiful! I don’t think I’ve said that yet. You know a lot more than I did and so I know you all are going to be just fine. Everything requires a period of adjustment and please don’t blame yourself if things get worse for a little while. That’s normal. Eventually, with perseverance and a lot of patience, things will get a whole lot better. I am willing to bet that even after just a week she will be thrilled to see you when you return.

    Take care.

  3. there is what is called a ‘honeymoon period’ where the dog is adjusting and you aren’t seeing their absolute personality just yet. some of our fosters are a wreck and get better over a few weeks. Some are angels the first week then all hell breaks loose as they get comfortable (like kiba showing us he was actually dog aggressive after he got comfortable here. surprise!)

    so don’t despair. the regression is her adjusting, just keep doing what you are doing. she’s obviously starting to trust you!

  4. After having been following for quite a while, I have to admit that reading your post about bringing Pyrrah home and the thought of your happiness in finally getting there, made me cry quite a bit (though it may also be the pregnancy hormones, haha) !!

    Two years ago I took a huge leap of faith and rescued an unknown mix from a shelter in Taiwan who really needed saving. He stayed in his crate for the first two weeks, growling at me. It took a full year for him to be comfortable enough to lie in a ‘submissive pose’ and let me rub his tummy, even though he trusts me and never leaves my side for anything.

    It will come with time, and every little breakthrough that Pyrrha makes will be worth your time spent and effort put in. My P-dog, always confident with other dogs now plays freely at the park and enjoys meeting new people, including children. He is a different animal and I can’t tell you enough what a relief it is that he has turned out that way. I feel like I may have just gotten lucky, but others tell me it’s the owner that brings out a great personality in a dog. Maybe so, but I still thank my lucky stars that he has turned into such a fabulous companion.

    Good luck with Pyrrah, your obvious passion and genuine love for animals will make her shine. You are an inspiration for all others who may ever hope to rescue someone who needs rescuing!

  5. Volunteer4Paws gave some great advice. It does take many dogs time to adjust to a new living situation. I’m so glad you’ve gotten a little peek at the awesome, playful girl you’ve adopted.

    And don’t forget, even if it’s not thundering out, some people believe dogs react to barometric readings that indicate storms are nearby. So weather could be affecting her even if you aren’t seeing storms that moment.

  6. I stopped by to visit after reading Pamela’s blog today. We have two German Shepherds here, one who’s a rescue and one that we got as a puppy. Morgan came to us and had already lived in four different homes. It’s been two years the end of this month since we brought her home, and she’s still got some things to overcome, but she’s come so very far! I hope that your journey with Pyrrha will be as wonderful as ours has been. ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Sometimes it’s tough to make those tough decisions, but we are always trying to do what is best for our pups, right? She is adorable and I can only imagine how happy it made you to see her let her guard down and let her personality shine through! Just a sneak peek to the cutie that she is!! Now I have to go back and read more of your posts! I came by way of Pamela’s blog ๐Ÿ™‚

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