For a rescue dog sometimes loves takes time. I’m not saying that it will take the person adopting time to love the dog, no that happens almost instantaneously when we lay our eyes on the adorable ball of fur. But sometimes it takes time for the love and trust to build from the dogs side.
The night I brought Katie home she smelled so bad, was skinny and just a total wreck. From the get go I found that she was extremely head-shy, which was a result of multiple ear infections at only 2 years old. During this first year there were many trips to the her vet and because her allergies were out of control we enlisted a dermatologist also. In the beginning we used the allergy medicine Atopica, but after a few months I did some research and found out what a dangerous drug this can be and quickly changed to a species appropriate diet to combat her allergies (more about that later).
So now fast forward 5 years, Katie hasn’t seen the vet for her allergies in over 2 years and we no longer deal with ear infections, all of which I strongly believe is a result of her diet. But this post isn’t about her diet, it is about her behavior as a rescue dog.
Katie is somewhat shy and will jump away from me when I, or anyone else in the house tries to pick her up. She doesn’t jump away all the time, but I’ve given in to the fact that this is something she will always do. But there are things she does on her own that let me know she does love me and is bonded to me.
Reasons Why I Know She Loves Me
As with a lot of dogs, and cats (lol), this is something she does on her own time and when she decides but it happens almost 3-5 times a week. In the evening she will give me a look and then jump on the couch and curl up between my legs. For her it doesn’t matter if I was comfortable the way I was, but now I’m sitting so she can feel safe. She immediately falls asleep.
As with a lot of rescued dogs, rescued Shih Tzus can come with scars of fear. For Katie that can include bell or horn sounds (fireworks, too), but instead of running for cover, Katie runs to me for safety. I am her human to protect her.
There is no other place this little dog would rather be than with me at bed time. Her favorite spot is either at the end of the bed, at my feet, or between my legs.
Now I’m not saying all rescue dogs are the same and will be like Katie, I just want you to know that rescuing is truly a wonderful thing and sometimes it may take them a little longer than we expect to love and trust us.