Kaylee’s First 48

OK so we’re a few days late on the 48-hour report, but after the Attack of the Killer Stomach Bug that hit Foster House over the holiday weekend, we were doing well just to make it back to work in one piece.  But as they say, dogs don’t care if you’re sick, so the show (blog?) must go on. 

Our time with Kaylee started out wonderfully – two dogs playing together, having a great time.  Two dogs sleeping on their respective couch/dog chair/person at the same time allowed for actual peace and quiet in Foster House – a rare occurrence when Tucker was with us!  Two dogs being respectful of the other’s eating space.  We thought, man, this is going to be cake!

Well before we could pinch ourselves, the dog poo hit the fan.  Oscar decided to let Kaylee know exactly what he thought of her muscling in on his toys, his People and his cuddle time so quickly….a scuffle ensued. 

We had fallen victim to a classic foster-rookie mistake: we introduced the dogs too quickly.  We had taken Oscar’s chill-attitude towards Tucker for granted, and assumed he would be as easy-going with whatever next dog we brought in.  Turns out, not the case.  Maybe it’s because Kaylee is female.  Maybe it’s her young age and puppy energy.  Maybe it’s her size. Whatever it is about her, something set Oscar on edge. 

So, we take a step back.  Separation.  Baby gates.  Rotating time with People.  It’s not the most convenient for us, but it’s important for the dogs.  Moving slowly now will help foster a trusting relationship, both between the two dogs, and between the dogs and us.  

When they are together, we use lots of praise (read: treats) for calm, relaxed behavior.

We are happy to report that things are progressing nicely, and hope to be back to “happy relaxed couch time” before long. 

But aside from the drama, we have had the chance to learn some wonderful things about Miss Kaylee.  She’s smart – she knows her basic commands (sit, down, stay, wait, off) very well.  She loves to play – her favorite game so far is to chase a toy  at full speed and launch herself into the Dog Chair.  A close second is chasing a Kong around the kitchen – she loves the funny way it bounces.  She loves Cuddle Time – especially in the morning.  She’ll climb right up in your lap and nibble on your ear, then lay her heavy head right on your shoulder and let out a big siiiiiiiiiigh like she’s never been more content in her entire life.  She’s definitely got plenty of puppy left in her – her energy and clumsiness make that much perfectly clear. 

We think because Kaylee spent the first seven months of her life on a chain, she’s making up for lost time, making sure she plays as much as she can, cuddles as much as she can, and is just being a dog as much as she can.  And we’ve been having a blast watching her do it!

To adopt Kaylee, contact Agape Animal Rescue.

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15 Comments

Filed under Our Foster Journey

15 responses to “Kaylee’s First 48

  1. I know that when Turk and Ginger have gotten into fights, I’ve blamed myself for letting it happen. Sounds like you are taking the right steps to prevent future issues and I am sure that Oscar just wanted to let her know what HIS boundaries were. Hopefully soon enough, all will be back to normal! Paws crossed for ya!

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  2. I’m sorry you had to experience that — it happens to every foster family at some point. We moved too fast with Lollie Wonderdog and had a fight on our hands. We haven’t made the same mistake again. You have already learned from this, and you’re stronger for it!
    Hope everybody is on the up-and-up!

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    • Thanks Aleks, we’ve definitely learned from it and you’re right, we will NOT make the same mistake again! Thankfully we’ve got a great support system in our rescue organization, and they sent a board member over to our house to help us learn some tricks to monitor the situation. We’re feeling much more confident now that they’ll eventually be able to get along. Slow is good!

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  3. Go Kaylee go! Everything is a learning curve!

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  4. We’ve had a scuffle once or twice too with foster dogs, don’t beat yourself up over it. It’s hard to remember sometimes that they are dogs and that stuff like this does happen (when they’re so cute and cuddly 99.9% of the time it’s hard to think of a fight happening!). It sounds like you’re doing everything right now to prevent it from happening again and that’s really good.

    Kaylee is super cute. I’m glad it sounds like she settled in quickly!

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  6. We JUST had something very similar happen in November… it was terrible (and I think much worse)… I was feeling like a failure but as Aleks said, it happens to every foster family at some point… now with our newest foster we are being super vigilant and better than we ever have been! Good Luck!

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    • Thanks!! I am so glad to know we’re not alone, it really has made me feel so much better! Plus, everyone will be happy to know that the dogs are doing amazingly well together now. We’ve even been able to play together without incident, and we’re able to call them apart verbally for a break if we see play getting too rough – we stop them as soon as there is growling (even play-growling). I am learning so much more about dog behavior being a foster mom than I ever thought I would!

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