Thursday, May 3, 2012

The return of Rosie the psycho wolverine.

Well, she can still get under the fence. Found that out last night about 10 p.m. when I went through the gate to turn off the hose water. Even in the dark, I saw her black little head poke out under the pickets, and I said, "Stay there," which she often understands as meaning "stay there" but last night she understood as "wriggle on out, girl!"

She wriggled on out and shot across the yard toward the street and my heart stopped for just a second, and I did what I knew was right, even though it went contrary to all my instincts: I did not chase her, but opened the gate, stepped back into the yard, and said in a cheery voice, "Come on, Rosie," and thanks be to God she came back.

This was after her evening visit to the vet, where in the confines of the exam room she turned back into Rosie the Wolverine after two weeks of sweetness.  We'd seen this coming over the last couple of days when she started growing owly and fussy, unhappy in her crate (which is why we were in the yard together at 10 p.m.).

And then, as Dr. J. listened to her heart and peered into her ears, she turned into a full-blown wolverine once more. Poor Dr. J; this is the only way he has seen her. "She was really sweet the last two weeks," I said, and he just looked at me like, "Yeah, lady, pet owners are always blind to the failings of their animals."

Rosie and Riley were at the vet to get the second half of their Lyme disease shots, and Rosie was also getting the balance of her puppy shots--the last distemper, and rabies. But the shots hadn't happened yet; we were still in the exam room, when her head started bobbing and weaving and her sharp little teeth started flashing.

Dr. J. explained to us what he was going to do, and then he did it. He leaned close to Rosie's face, bellowed NO!!!! in a volume loud enough to stop a train, and then he growled. It was a good growl, fierce and deep in his throat. Quite ominous.

It worked, for a second. She stopped being a wolverine and looked at him with surprise. And when she resumed her wolverine mode, he growled again.

According to the scale at the vet's office, she now weighs 19 pounds, and I'm figuring that the wolverine mode and growth spurt are, once again, linked. Please taper off again, Rosie. I've been bragging to everyone about how sweet you are. Please get sweet again.

It's 7:15 a.m. Time to walk the great old dog and the puppy. Always an adventure, but somehow I think that with a 19-pound wolverine on the other end of the leash instead of a sweet puppy, this morning might be particularly noteworthy. Wish me luck.


Anonymous said...

I have a friend who had two of the worst dogs that I had ever met. I couldn't stand them. Always jumping on you, trying to bite. An English trainer wrote to do what your vet did so I tried it. After about three visits and three shouts of No and growling they never jumped again. When they saw me they always sat with their tails wagging so fast I thought they'd take off. The dogs and I got along fine after that. The trainer said the humans growling told the dogs that we were in charge.


Anonymous said...

I LOVE that Riley is the "great old dog"...and Rose will turn into the great young dog....did you know that labs don't get their brain until their about 4? Just thought I'd share that


Kate said...

How I enjoy the tales of Rosie! It's so much fun imagining her escapades and feel so secure in the knowledge that is you instead of me who is in the middle of puppydom!! Enjoy!!

Deborah said...

Oh yeah, that growling works fairly well, at least it did with my dogs. Tonka the destroyer became Tonka the Good Dog after we adopted Daisy. He's loving his new role, too.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I'm trying to imagine taking a 19 pound wolverine for a walk. Sounds mildly dangerous!

Irene said...

Yes, you're right. She's having growing pains and that's tough for a puppy. You've just got to make sure that she gets enough to eat. That's about all you can do. And yell NO really loud and growl a lot. xox

Pamela M. Miller said...

It's amazing how Rosie's puppyhood parallels the childhood of, er, Noah. Moods and behavior often changed with growth spurts. Someday Rosie will be a sweet, staid old dog and you'll remember these days with misty affection.

NanaNor's said...

Hi, All I know is that I am very happy the puppy we get tomorrow, at 4 mos, is only 7 lbs...don't think I could handle Rosie-which is why we picked a companion sized breed.
Hope she mellows out soon.
Hugs, Noreen

Maery Rose said...

I had the going under the fence problem with my dog Latte. Call me evil but I added an invisible fence to my visible fence. I figured a couple shocks (that's all it took) were better than getting lost or hit by a car.

Fiddlin' Bill said...

Rosie looks remarkably like the older cousin of the puppy who arrived and departed a couple of weeks ago, in the midst of our gradual adoption.

Two French Bulldogs said...

Rosie you are lucky you are cute ( mom says that to my Lily)
Benny & Lily

Rudee said...

Growling works. It must be loud, deep and guttural. Mean it when you growl at her as her own mama would do. Heather, Leo's dog whisperer, taught us this and it works even on adolescent dogs. Leo gets it a lot when he forgets to be gentle as he tries to take food from my hand. I usually follow the growl with a command to be easy or gentle. Before the growling, I was afraid to feed him from my hand as he could nip my fingers in the process (though this was not his intent).

I'm so glad she came back when you called. It would have been tough finding her in the dark. Maybe she needs a bell on her collar...just in case.

Far Side of Fifty said...

Scary about the fence but hopefully she will grow too big to sneak out before long. She must be in her terrible write about her beautifully:)