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(WFTV Orlando)   New center offers help for dogs consumed by fear   ( ) divider line 13
    More: Weird, dogs consumed, ASPCA, Portage, common areas  
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3167 clicks; posted to Main » on 12 Mar 2013 at 12:14 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2013-03-12 01:11:24 PM  
2 votes:
I hope this center is successful and they can open more around the country. Fear in animals is so misunderstood and many undesirable behaviors, including aggression, actually stem from fear.

My shelter pup Tilly came with issues from her previous owner but I could tell right away she was just scared and insecure, and after sitting quietly with her for a few minutes she warmed up to me. It was rough at times in the beginning and we still have to crate her when guests come over because she goes into defensive mode and barks at them nonstop (she's a terrier mix, so I'm not surprised). Tilly is especially fearful of men and went from barking at my boyfriend every time he entered the room and peeing every time he tried to pet her to being his BFF, going to Starbucks and on Jeep rides on the weekend.

If a behavioral center like this can help animals overcome their fear and get into loving homes (and reduce dog bite incidences), I'm 110% for it!
2013-03-12 01:04:10 PM  
2 votes:
Breaking through the snark for a moment, this is a really cool thing if it helps rehabilitate some dogs that would otherwise have to be put down automatically.

My concern remains with the ability of the local shelters to find enough caring homes after the dogs are rehabilitated, though. Maybe it's easier with puppies from puppy mills, though.
2013-03-12 09:13:34 PM  
1 vote:

SmackLT: Breaking through the snark for a moment, this is a really cool thing if it helps rehabilitate some dogs that would otherwise have to be put down automatically.

My concern remains with the ability of the local shelters to find enough caring homes after the dogs are rehabilitated, though. Maybe it's easier with puppies from puppy mills, though.

Exactly.  I really can't understand how this earned the "Weird" tag, unless subby likes seeing mistreated dogs put down for something that isn't their fault.

Now, if it were an Upper East Side dog psychologist that existed solely for the dog's owners to have something to talk about at the country club... yeah, that's weird.  Legitimately helping animals who may have been abused get good homes is not weird.
2013-03-12 03:21:28 PM  
1 vote:
I have a friend who fosters dogs who've been in abusive situations. Her greatest triumph was a particular dog who'd been stolen from a family's back yard and used as a bait dog by a fighting ring. (They found the microchip after the humane officers got him in a raid.) His face and neck were all ripped-up and he'd bark and growl like a mad thing any time ANYONE came near him because he was just too scared. He wasn't even like a dog anymore, just a fur bag of bones and terror.

Somehow this brilliant, incredibly patient woman brought the poor fellow around, fixed his fear/anxiety issues and got him to the point where four humane officers signed off on his being safe to go to a family with older children. It took her months, but she managed it.

And though by that point he'd been gone for over two years, his original family came back to see him with their teenagers, and it was like watching this poor, beat-up dog turn into a puppy again. These were HIS humans, and they came to bring him home! They held their pet and cried over him as the little stub of tail he had left just wagged and wagged, and the dad reached out his hand to my friend and just said "thank you." She got a little misty-eyed for only a split second, handed over a box of the dog's toys and gave some careful advice and her contact information...and then she went to the back of the shelter to get her next two rescues, because that is what she does.

The interesting thing is that if you ever talk to her, you'd realize that she doesn't consider this work of the angels to be heroic or even particularly remarkable at all, and having talked to relatives of hers, it turns out helping animals is how she dealt with the PTSD she had after some truly unspeakable experiences, and fostering abused or neglected critters back to full health and sanity is how she, herself, stays sane. She literally cannot be without at least one animal-in-need.

So I decided to see if it could work for my comparatively minor issues and got into fostering as well. I mainly raise orphaned feline neonates, look after cats during the post-op period and tame feral kittens into pets, but damned if it isn't better than any talk therapy or SSRI on the market.

Those paw-print magnets that say 'Who rescued who?' are nothing less than truth-in-advertising.
2013-03-12 01:59:18 PM  
1 vote:

Felgraf: I swear to god I hope we don't ever meet our new dog's former owners. I LIKE not having a felony record.

The foster group told us she was neglected, and they suspected abuse (she was surrendered to a shelter, and a foster group took her in, we got them from her), but I'm almost *CERTAIN* there was abuse. She starts at any loud noise or angry voice, used to curl up, cower, and pee if strangers came over (Now she barks at them initially: IMPROVEMENT! Yaay.), and is still INCREDBILY skittish when we are outside on walks (its as though she becomes afraid of me, my fiance, and EVERYTHING). And she was so skinny you could see her ribs when we got her (the foster group hadn't had her long enough to put much weight on her). This isn't a greyhound, either.

Thankfully, she's only a year old, and she's steadily improved in the few months we've had her, and she gets along well with the other dog (Even if he's a biatcheaty when they play).

My ex and I used to do foster rehabilitation for dogs with fear issues or history of abuse in the past. 
Being a tall male with a deep voice 90% of the dogs were absolutely afraid of me.
We had a pretty good success rate and our dog was amazing with them.
One of my strategies was to put a trail of treats on the ground and then lie down with a few in my hand.
They would slowly work up the courage and walk closer to me.
Sometimes it would take an hour sometimes it would take days.

Its a very heartbreaking experience seeing dog after dog come into the shelter with scars, fighting injuries, missing eyes, aggression issues from abuse, neglect and malnourishment.

This shelter is amazing and I hope it inspires more around the country.
2013-03-12 01:18:21 PM  
1 vote:

caddisfly: No COOL tag?  Maybe INTERESTING?  HERO?  No, just WEIRD. Fark is just too damn cynical.


+1 to caddisfly.

Formerly terrified/abused dogs often make the most loving, loyal, and gentle pets. Gratitude to good owners- and patient training- will do that.
2013-03-12 01:09:45 PM  
1 vote:
No COOL tag?  Maybe INTERESTING?  HERO?  No, just WEIRD. Fark is just too damn cynical.
2013-03-12 01:02:14 PM  
1 vote:


"Hmm...I gotta be honest, that didn't go quite as well as expected."

I agree.  Kinda funny though so don't beat yourself up - have a treat instead.  May I suggest an organic treat made from gluten free wheat?

Seriously,  I never understood the relationship between man and dogs.  I always thought of it as a negotiation or boss / worker thing.
But since we got our little dogs, I finally get it.  Now I fully understand how people of all stripes will go broke trying to keep their dog alive.  I get it.  I don't agree with it but I can see why.

If my wife loved me as much as our dogs love me, I would be the envy of men everywhere.
2013-03-12 12:40:44 PM  
1 vote:
What's weird about it?
2013-03-12 12:37:27 PM  
1 vote:
2013-03-12 12:36:33 PM  
1 vote:
Obviously they need some black or artifact creatures in their decks.
2013-03-12 12:26:59 PM  
1 vote:
Is fear English for Chinese?
2013-03-12 12:16:50 PM  
1 vote:
Is this a vacuum-cleaner and Dustbuster free zone?
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