We were sitting in our family room tonight when something black streaked past the patio door. “WTF was that?” said my husband. It was a lovely little four month old black lab pup. Once it got into the back yard it couldn’t figure out how to get out – thank goodness.
But I’ve never seen such an absolutely terrified dog that has not been socialized. It’s not leash trained, it won’t come when called, it trusts absolutely no one. We managed to corral it in the corner and snap a leather leash left over from our own black lab cross who died almost two years ago. (That’s her above) But it refused to move, instead burying itself into the muddy morass that is our backyard now that the snow is melting. Jim ended up having to pick the poor thing up, liberally coating himself in that mud as well.
We spent the next two hours – one of us with the dog on the leash in the driveway, in case someone drove by looking for their puppy, the other walking through the neighbourhood hoping to come across someone calling. No joy. So we extended the search. We loaded the puppy in to the car – who settled down immediately and fell asleep – and drove further afield. Still no joy.
By now, it’s dark, it’s getting cold, we haven’t had dinner and we don’t know what else to do. Animal services closed at 5, the police (who AS said you should call if you found or lost a dog) took our name but other than that it was up to us to either keep her for the night or set her loose. No choice to that – we dug out the old crate Storm used to use and put down a thick blanket and she curled right up and settled down, quite happily.
A half hour later, Jim looks out the patio window again and sees a car crawling slowly in the parking lot behind our house. “Hey,” he says, “I think someone’s finally looking.”
Yup, turned out the puppy came from a house three doors up – something I’d predicted at the outset.
The owners only acquired her last week, and said to the breeder that wasn’t the type of puppy they wanted but for some reason he didn’t give them a choice – now I can only go with what they say on this. They called him later in the week to say that the dog won’t eat from a bowl, won’t socialize with them, is scared stiff — well, basically everything I’ve already noticed. He says “put the dog outside and leave it until it’ll come to you.”
May I say … BULLSH*T! That is the worst possible advice to give for a dog that needs socializing.
So I talk some more to the owner and I realize, it’s not a reputable breeder she’s got it from, it’s a puppy mill up in Peterborough that I know of. My parents bred and showed English Springer Spaniels. My sister breeds English Cockers. I know whereof I speak. A respectable breeder of the CKC will force you to sign an agreement, that if you don’t want the dog you’ll take it back to them — that’s because they don’t want their dogs abandoned. And if there’s something wrong with a dog they want you to bring it back too – because no reputable breeder wants someone to identify a sick or bad tempered dog with their kennel.
These owners. They’re SOL. I hope that dog turns out all right.
I also hope they put a damned tag on the dog’s collar with their phone number so whoever finds Kendra next time can call them.