Friday, November 26, 2010

A nice, albeit early, start

Nope. I don't do Black Friday. It was not sales that got me up at 4am. It was not pre-Christmas excitement or decorating. It was the normal type day. I wanted badly to sleep, as I had consumed enough turkey to have me in a Tryptophan haze for days. (It was good, what can I say?) It was a sound rarely heard from this particular source...Miss Kate.

Kate is a happy dog, in general, but very obsessive. When she plays, she plays hard. Usually it is with balls. She FRAPS, but that is generally short lived and is followed by her thoroughly cleaning the other two dogs; every inch of them. She sometimes will start to lick me, but it is weird and very rhythmic, and gets creepy and I stop it. This morning was a rather unique sound from her, especially first thing in the morning.

Kate sleeps on my pillows. She and Nugget trade off on that spot. He was at my feet and she at my head. I reached up and gave her a pat, as I do frequently through the night, to whomever has that spot. She returned my pat with a quick nose touch and then I heard it. A very loud thumping coming from above my head. For most of you dog folks this is no big deal, and likely a bit irritating at 4am. To me it was a shocking sound that was music to my ears. She was wagging her tail against the head board of the bed. It is not that she doesn't wag her tail. But her tail wags are usually very gentle sways as she is walking or running. She smiles a lot, but no tail wags as she lays around. This is huge!! I gave her a pat and quick ruffle of the fur on her neck. The thumping began again and this time with greater intensity. No nudges, no licks, no obsessing. Just plain happy dog tail wags.

I have had this dog for half of her life now...18 months (she is just over 3 years)...OK give or take a couple. She is still a work in progress. People on one of the Corgi forums were comparing the two breeds of Corgis and someone mentioned that the Cardigan Corgi REALLY needs human contact; a lot more than the Pemmie. It is difficult not to try to put human emotions on my dogs, and I do know that they process things differently than a human does, but Kate is just beginning to blossom from all of the work that I have done. She was a crate dog, and had never left the property she was born on. I put her in a car and drove for nine hours. I sleep with her on my bed. I take her to parks and subject her to lots of people of all sizes. The smells are not smells she had ever experienced. I live a block from the salt water and the sand. She has taken it all in stride, no matter how confusing and overwhelming it may have been. She is still not reliably house broken. I have become good at making sure she goes out, but she has yet to ask to go out. Since getting Nugg-pup I have come to find out how truly easy this breed should be. It makes me think about the price I have paid for Kate both monetarily and figuratively. From there, of course, I go to that awful place of wondering how to deal with this long term and the whys and what ifs. She is healthy physically and has wonderful bloodlines. Her heart is bigger than big. It has wound itself around mine and the thought of not having her hurts my heart. Realistically, it is the thought of her still living in a crate that breaks my heart. There is still a lot of baggage to work on, at this point.

Just when I think that it is time to think about Prozac (for her, not me!), I get a nice gentle tail thump on my head board. You have no idea how huge this really is!!!

Thanks, Kate.

I think I will head to bed and a nap before the cleaning begins. If you want to join me, and sleep on my pillow, you are much more than welcome.



Shep said...

Aw... so much love for Miss Kate and you over this post. It's nice to see a dog taking constant steps forward, isn't it?

You know what's interesting? The only other dog I've ever met with that weird, creepy licking is Piper, and she spent her first five months in a crate constantly with limited access out at all.

I can't stand it either I have to push her away, because it's almost like a trance. She licks her bed too. :/ Weird.

But Kate, she's so sweet. :) I'm glad she has you! :D

Sandy ~~~ said...

Sooo happy for you and your Kate. The tail wag is hardly EVER present with Creel, the greyhound. Now with Cotton in the house I didn't realized how much I missed waggin tails.

Ahhh...that's better.

Anonymous said...

I know what you mean. To see a dog take steps in a forward direction and know that you helped facilitate that, there is no words for it. Just pure emotion.

Polly really played for the first time the other day. She gave a play bow to Liam and they were all over the living room. Up and down off furniture, tails wagging, tongues hanging. It was so cute. She tried to get Karis to play first but she wasn't interested.

Polly does the licking thing too. I wonder if it is due to a lack of physical connection as a young dog. Emmett licks consistently and Karis used to but she grew out of it. Maybe they just never learn how to grow out of it and it becomes something of a security to them.

Who knows? I really want someone to invent the dog collar they had in the "Up" movie. I would pay an arm and a leg to really know what is going thru their heads sometimes. And to know how to communicate with them what I want and need from them at any given moment. Right about now with Liam sounds good. How to get thru "bitch brain" would be nice to know.