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Polly Pocket: Bath time and Barking

July 23rd, 2012 | Posted by Emily in Doggies! | Fostering. | Irrational Fears | Local Business Love | Not So Healthy Eats | Opt to Adopt | Polly Pocket | Rescues | Silliness | Stuff I Love | Summer Fun

Polly Pocket here to share with you about my limits. You may not realize this (apparently foster mama didn’t*), but some dogs have limits as to how much they can handle before they go berserker and melt into a puddle of drool and stress toots.


You see, the thing is that I am just getting the hang of being part of a family in a house let alone out in the big bad world! So while I am finally able to be calm and hang out with Foster Mama and Foster Daddy (and Turkey and Rufus), I get really anxious when we leave the comfort of Foster House. I see other doggies and I go bark, bark, bark to let them know that I am not scared but very TOUGH. Sometimes I even bark at doggies who I know are my friends, like Dante.

Yesterday I met up with Dante and his Mama, Amy of Fido Fetch Photography, at the Suds of Fun charity dog wash for the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City. Foster Mama had thought this event would be a good way to both get me a bath and market me to potential furever families at the same time. She knew there would be some challenges though, since many of the factors involved in this outing pushed my limits: (1) Lots of dogs; (2) Lots of people – most of which were not paying attention to me; and (3) bath time (shudder). As soon as we got out of the car I started bark, bark, barking to let everyone know that I had arrived and that I am very TOUGH. I thought Foster Mama would appreciate that I was announcing our arrival, but she looked really embarrassed. She even tried to lure me from my hyper-attentive state with hot dogs, but seriously? I am a terrier, lady…it takes more than a hot dog to break MY focus. So instead of walking around and sniffing other dogs’ butts (which was making me feel growly), we found a quiet corner away from the hustle and bustle where Foster Mama made me “sit,” and she petted me when I was quiet. When it was time for my bath, we had to take this twist-y turn-y way into the bath time building because she didn’t want me to bark or lunge at anyone’s dog. Once inside, I faced death in the face the dreaded bathtub. I made sure to give Foster Mama my surliest glare to show her how I felt about bath time. Then she tickled underneath my chin and made me smile just a little before letting Amy snap this photo – tricked!

After my brush with death bath, Foster Mama got me some brisket for being so brave and took me back to a quiet spot away from the other doggies and let me eat just enough to not get sick, but enough to make my tummy warm and full and happy. I was a little upset when she gave a couple of bites to Dante, but she told me that he was her favorite hot dog, and I needed to chill out.

After my brisket, I calmed down enough to walk around to look at the different booths for a little bit. Some people’s dog’s were on retractable leashes, and a few times those dogs were out reeeeeeaaaallllly far on the leash and would just get up in my face! IN. MY. FACE! But luckily, Foster Mama and Amy were keeping a close eye out for me so Amy ran interference with Dante a few times and Foster Mama knew to redirect my focus if I started to get growly. One time, she even redirected my focus with a teeny tiny pup cone from Sheridan’s(my new favorite thing). I love the ice creams but not the cone, so I gave that part to Dante. See? I can share.

When I finished my cone, Foster Mama felt like I had done enough for the day and chauffeured me back to Foster House.  She told me that I had “made some strides” but we still have a lot to work on. Walking around by the end of the night without barking or snapping at any dogs – good. Trying to hide between a hunky firefighter’s legs for three minutes because I was nervous – not so good. But honestly, can you blame me on that one?

* Foster Mom here – although Polly doesn’t think so, we do recognize that she has some boundary issues when out in public. I do want to help her work through those though, which is why I took her to this event. I was very careful to read her signs and take her away from the group when she was feeling overstimulated. The firefighter though – she beelined for him. Not sure what I could have done.

** Polly Pocket is still available for adoption – see her profile here!

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13 Responses

  • It’s Charlie Machete here, Polly, and I totally understand where you’re coming from. I used to think groups of people and dogs were the scariest thing ever, and so I did lots of bark, bark, barking and growl, growl, growling. I didn’t want strangers coming anywhere near me. But after many walks with the KC Pittie Pack and patience from my foster family, I’m not so scared anymore. But I’m still TOUGH!

  • avatar tholupka says:

    “I stared death in the face”, hahahahahahahah! Oh, Polly, you are too cute! Baby steps, your momma knows what she’s doing!

  • avatar Anita says:

    Please send me Dante ASAP, I would like to smooch his face.

  • avatar Emily says:

    Wow, that’s a lot in one day, way to go Polly!

  • It’s ok, Polly. Alfred would much prefer to stay at home too where it is safe and quiet. Sometimes we practice “hanging out” at the park, but he usually ends up in a fight with his leash and then we are both VERY TIRED. We all have our things to work on, and it sounds like you and your Foster Mom are going to do a great job!

  • avatar Mayzie says:

    Shudder! I could hardly read this postie knowing there was going to be a BATH in it. Yikes! I’m so very much glad you survived. It sounds like it was a pretty close call.

    I’m proud of you for living through the bath and all those other doggies and peoples. I still gets overwhelmed in places like that so I think you did real good!

    Wiggles & Wags,
    Mayzie

  • avatar Kirsten says:

    Wow what a gorgeous face. I’m hoping that the day comes soon when it is as easy as it should be to get a brown pittie mix adopted out to a fantastic home! Good job Polly and foster mom, you were very brave.

  • It’s always good to figur out a foster dog’s quirks so you can start working on them ASAP. Polly’s a doll, and I’m sure he has a lot of success in her future with you as a foster mom:)

  • avatar onedoglife says:

    I just adopted out a very fearful/reactive foster … it’s so much fun to watch them make progress!

  • avatar Emily says:

    OH MY does this ever bring me back to our first foster. She was an absolute love and (mostly) saintly in our house but in public she made all kinds of noise and caused quite a scene–we even “banned” her from adoption events but luckily her perfect family fell in love with her online and got to meet her where she really sparkled– at our house!
    Pup cones?! What a world!