…so far, because she is looking for a new home.
6 years old now and born into her original family where she stayed for some years. Then, a new human baby arrived in the family and there was a certain nervousness connected with that so she was moved locally to the grandparents’ home, but only as a temporary measure till a new home could be found.
This occurred about 6 months ago, and she was moved to the Vendee, which is where I found her on Monday. Perfectly gentle and calm in the presence of another female Dobie (a good point for adoption) but when all was ready for departure she refused point blank.
At first it seemed that she appreciated the friendly regard of Jules looking through the gap from the back space, but the sight of the dark cage (still covered as a precaution by me for the dual male journey last week) was too much and she began to tremble. Her collar was not tight and at one point she slipped out of it so, once replaced, it was time for the final solution.
Sounds worse than it is but I have loaded large and reluctant dogs all alone before with this method. First throw the clip end of a lunge rein (a soft one not to damage the paint work, not the durable one which can be dragged through forest and field by Jules) over the car, open the opposite sliding door and poke the clip through the cage bars. Then, return to the open side and crawl in to pull the clip out of the car and attach to her collar. Then while with my left hand I gently took the weight of her head, and the previous owner pushed from the rear, I took up all the slack gained little by little on the lunge over the roof. Once her forelegs and head were through the gap and she realised it wasn’t so terrifying after all, in she went willingly.
Then the most dangerous bit of all, for me anyway, I had to go head first into the cage with arms outstretched to unclip the lunge. Some dogs do object to such an invasion of their space but, thankfully, I haven’t had my head bitten off so far. On this occasion my face had to endure some licking though.
Then we were on the road back to Sharon’s pension, the temporary home of, normally, 8 or 10 Dobies awaiting adoption, a journey of 2 and a half hours where we arrived dead on 4pm. I was warned by the lady that she would cry in the car, and boy, did she ever? Although there were silent breaks in between, the crying and occasional barking, was incessant. I was so pleased with Jules that he ignored the racket and made no response and I did wonder, in view of his ease with other dogs, perhaps the covers should come off the front cage and maybe it could have been in this case, that his visible calm presence might have had a beneficial effect on Irys. I’ll think about it before the next occasion.
Anyway, no problems on arrival, she was easy to unload though on my advice a slip rope was used because of the loose collar. A short relaxation for a pee (her) and a couple of poses for the camera, and we were off back home. The reason for her enforced relocation this time was not of course the Dobermann, but the 2 Terriers, which I didn’t see or hear, who simply did not get on with her. It happens, as with some people, and during her stay at Sharon’s, where dogs of all ages and sizes run free often together (with suitable initial precautions), it will become clear who was at ‘fault’ with the Terriers.