Having finished the weekly radio radio program I produce first thing every Monday, I took The Kids on a walk and went past the mailbox to send the program disk out to the radio station. Then we went up to the shop yard for some play time with Cheyanne and Rhonda.
Cochise refused to go through the gate: “I don’t want to get in the middle of their rough-housing.” These girls have not done any rough-housing, not like Blondie and Janet used to do or Cochise and Malachi for that matter. He’s just being bull-headed. Well; he is a bulldog. So I used the leash to tether Cochise outside the wooden gate (where he could watch, but not be involved) and he sat there, ears pinned back and his back turned to the fun, ignoring us.
Blondie and Cheyanne played together nicely. After a bit, Cochise started to whine, “I want to play too … I’m lonely out here.” So I let him in and off the leash. The three of them leisurely chased each other around for a while. Nice gentle play. Rhonda was still in her pen, watching everyone else having fun.
Rhonda: Sweet but Skittish
Rhonda is a sweet, gentle little gal; with people. But ever since arriving here she has been defensive with other dogs. If they get too close; even on the other side of a fence, she’ll snarl at them. Out in the open she will defend herself by going on the offensive. We’ve been working with her on that: it is a bad trait to have if she wants to get adopted.
She has not been snarling or barking at anyone for a few days, so I put her on a leash and brought her to the doorway of the pens. She was fine: a little timid, but not at all grumpy. Blondie started barking at her in a way that did not seem like an invitation to play and Rhonda shrunk back into the pens: apparently she agreed. Blondie holds grudges. I put Rhonda back in her pen then put Blondie inside the shop, and tried it again with Rhonda.
She and Cochise get along fine. Everyone loves Cochise. She and Cheyanne are neighbors and seem happy with that arrangement, as long as there’s a fence between them. The last time we tried them together out in the open did not go so well. This time, they got acquainted (butt sniffing). Rhonda was a bit jumpy, but I kept assuring her that no one was going to hurt her, they just wanted to play.
Coming Out of Her Shell
Once she decided that was true, Rhonda wanted to dart off and run. She seemed OK now, so I removed the leash and let her run. She and Cheyanne played an amusing game of Queen of the Hill, with Rhonda up on The Ridge and Cheyanne climbing up the hill. Rhonda would lunge at Cheyanne, who would turn and run away as though she was really scared, then run around and come back up the hill. This seemed to build Rhonda’s confidence, and after a bit she came down and these two ran like crazy all over the place.
Cochise refereed, but stayed out of it … for the most part. Near the end he decided they were getting too wound up and stepped in to settle them down.
Time for cookies and some rest. Everyone is back where they belong now and all are pleasantly worn out. It’s good to see Rhonda getting along with the others. The friction between her and Blondie was on Blondie, not Rhonda. We have another week before Rhonda rides the rescue bus; I hope to have her much more accepting by then. Today, with some unexpected help from Cheyanne, Rhonda did a great job of coming out of her shell and resolving her issues with Blondie.
Farewell to Rhonda
Rhonda has gone into the Rolling Rescue program and is now in New Jersey at the 3 Hearts, 4 Paws Rescue. She has her own Web Page. If you’d like to give this adorable cuddle-baby a forever home, please contact 3 Hearts-4Paws.
The foster home that was caring for Rhonda fell in love with her and adopted her. She now has a wonderful forever home.
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