Pyr at summer camp with Georgia

While we were at the beach this past week, Pyrrha was lucky enough to attend doggy summer camp with my in-laws and their sweet puppy Georgia.

Doggy summer camp

As you can see, Pyrrha had a great time. We are so thankful that she gets along so well with Georgia! It makes leaving her behind a whole lot less stressful on me. This was the longest we’ve ever left her for! I felt like a neurotic mother. But she was totally happy and that put me at such ease.

Doggy summer camp

Our in-laws reported that while she played happily with Georgia all week, she still didn’t really want much attention from them, which is what I more or less expected. It takes Pyrrha a LONG time to really warm up to people. She is often only able to interact with people when I am around; when I’m gone, apparently, she keeps to herself and would prefer that you did the same. Poor, weird dog. I hope that this behavior can improve in the future. Even though she continues to make a lot of progress, I am often reminded of how much more progress can still be made.

Doggy summer camp

Doggy summer camp

HUGE thanks to Mike and Windy for keeping our baby girl while we were at the beach! And thanks to Georgia, for being such a great and happy pup.

Doggy summer camp
This just makes me laugh. What a happy little thing!

Leaving Pyrrha for the weekend

Yes?
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!

Pup links!

Kate Moss and a watchful border collie. Source: Via Camila Chaves

Dog-related links from around the Web this week…

Vintage Dog Show. A collection of photos from dog shows decades ago. The dogs look great; the people, not so much. (Miles to Style)

Herend Dogs. Rich, old dog ladies should fill their homes with these colorful figurines. (Miles to Style)

The never-ending dog show. And pictures. Lots of pictures. Great ones, too. These border collies look so joyful, whether in the backyard sprinkler or in the agility ring. (Hippie Dogs)

Maine: Island Life. I love these beautiful photographs of a peaceful family vacation with the dogs. I can’t wait to take my dog on vacation with me! (Big Bang Studio)

Italian Dogs. Poignant photographs of dogs met while on vacation in Italy. (Ulicam)

Building Your Dog’s Drive in Preparation for Obedience. Minette discusses how we can keep our dog’s play drive alert and active–and how it can be used for obedience training. (Dog Obedience Training Blog)

Which Would Work Better, a Dog or a Scanner? Personally, I’d much rather be searched by a dog than by a TSA agent! (Pet Connection)

Spaying the Neuter or No? Oh, my goodness. This is what I mean when I talk about people who shouldn’t get dogs… (You Suck at Craigslist)

A Dog Post. A funny comparison between the regal profile of a Rhodesian ridgeback and the sloppy face of a Basset hound (including a wonderful montage of Bassets running, which is always the funniest thing I see all day). (Confessions of a Pioneer Woman)

Not Your Stick. A helpful photographic explanation of how the game “Not Your Stick” is played. (Raised by Wolves)

Self-Gratification. A hilarious montage of one German shepherd’s delight in a big orange bucket. (Raising K9)

Dog v. Goon Squad. Dogs reading and lounging around with Jennifer Egan’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, A Visit from the Goon Squad, which I coincidentally loved. (Big Bang Studio)

Vacation time!

dog beach
Pawprints on the beach. Source: Flickr, user demandaj

My husband and I are headed to the beach for a week to celebrate our one-year anniversary! Will be out of commission and quite happily so until June 6. Have a lovely Memorial Day weekend!