If you follow us on Facebook, you may have seen this status update I frantically wrote while sitting nervously in the emergency vet waiting room January 3rd.
Long story short: Turk and Rufus got into a fight, which was caused by a combination of preventable “triggers” (i.e. things that cause them to lose their cool and pick a fight): closed quarters (Turk), food (Turk), and Yeti (Rufus). The results of said fight were gruesome and now Rufus is wearing the dreaded Comfy Cone.
I can tell that Turk is aware that what he did was wrong (as much as a dog can). Daniel said he cried by the door the whole time I was gone at the vet getting Rufus stitched up. He slept next to Rufus’ crate that night and refused to move (he typically sleeps in another room entirely). And he’s been following Rufus around like a dopey kid brother ever since.
But as friends and family learned about the incident, I heard from more than one person: “we love Turk, but do you think he is just an aggressive dog?” I’ll admit, when I was cradling Rufus in my arms while waiting to be seen by the emergency vet, the thought crossed my mind.
But only for a second. You see, here’s the thing: that fight was our fault. Not Turk’s or Rufus’. We have identified Turk and Ru’s triggers and usually are very good at managing those triggers – we don’t allow Turk and Rufus on the couch if we are eating there, we only allow Yeti to come out if Turk is in his crate, and if Turk is up on the couch or bed with us, we give him plenty of space so he doesn’t feel trapped. But we slipped…we got lazy… instead of taking the extra time to remove the known triggers, we didn’t worry about it and paid the price for it. So for awhile, Yeti isn’t going to be making any visits to our house to avoid scenes like this…
I’ll be honest, I thought about not posting about this incident. I don’t want to paint a picture of Turk as a monster… he really isn’t. He’s just a dog who has quirks and obstacles like any other dog. It is my job as his mama to set him up to succeed. But I believe it is my job as a blogger to portray dog ownership in an honest way. I’m not the blogger with all the answers (I’ll happily bestow that title on my buddy Aleks – my doggy guru!). I’m still figuring out how to be the best pet owner I can be.
I’m just so thankful to be part of such a wonderful community in the blog-o-sphere that I can be honest about my struggles and know that I won’t be judged…but more importantly, that I will be supported. Seriously, it is such a reassuring feeling.