Precious Cargo

He is my best friend, and I know he will love me until the end, but there is a problem.  There is no doubt that he is adorable, which is probably part of the issue, as everyone wants to pet him.  He is a tiny fellow and he sees everyone else as being giants and that frightens him.  I guess it all started when the guy with Parkinson’s disease tried to pet Rufus and ended up poking him in his eyes because the man’s hand was shaking and after that Rufus has been nipping people when they try to pet him.   The vet said that I needed to desensitize Rufus so that he can see strangers in a more positive light.  My vet felt that it is very important to correct this behavior before someone gets seriously bitten, so he hooked me up with this dog travel sling, and now Rufus is almost at the same height level as most people.  My dog Rufus is not an aggressive dog and since dogs have this incredible sense of smell, which is like a sixth sense that allows them to perceive if a person is giving off negative or positive energy.  The vet feels that this critical socialization period could last anywhere from about 3 to 16 weeks, where I carry Rufus around and try to introduce him to as many unfamiliar people and places as possible, making sure that all new experiences are good ones.  He weighs about the same as a bowling ball, so I can only carry him around for about an hour each day and it is not a terrible burden, but I will be really happy when things go back to normal.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #176.

22 thoughts on “Precious Cargo

  1. It’s heartwarming to see how much you care about Rufus, your furry best friend. It’s understandable that you are worried about his behavior towards strangers, especially after the incident with the man with Parkinson’s. It’s good that you consulted the vet and took their advice to desensitize Rufus towards strangers in a positive way. It’s amazing how dogs can sense negative or positive energy and react accordingly. Carrying Rufus in a dog travel sling seems like a great idea to bring him to the same height level as most people, and it’s admirable that you’re taking the time to introduce him to new experiences in a positive way. I can imagine carrying a dog around for an hour every day can be challenging, but your dedication to helping Rufus overcome his fear is inspiring. I’m sure with your patience and love, Rufus will overcome his fear of strangers and become more comfortable in social situations. 👍👏👌😊

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  2. This story beautifully captures the struggles of pet owners and their furry companions. Rufus, the adorable but frightened pup, reminds me of how delicate our pets’ personalities can be. The owner’s dedication to desensitizing Rufus and correcting his behavior is truly inspiring. It shows how much love and responsibility come with being a pet parent.

    The use of a dog travel sling is a clever and practical solution to help Rufus feel more comfortable around strangers. It also highlights the importance of seeking professional advice from a vet when faced with challenging pet behavior.

    The story’s emphasis on positive experiences during the critical socialization period resonates with me as a reminder of how essential it is to introduce our pets to new experiences and people gradually. It’s heartening to see the owner’s commitment to carrying Rufus for an hour each day to help him overcome his fear.

    Overall, this story highlights the love, dedication, and responsibility that come with being a pet owner. It’s a reminder to always prioritize our pets’ well-being and seek help when we need it. 👍👏👌😊

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      1. Yes, I do have pets! I have three cats, two of whom are female and one male. Each has a unique personality, but they all bring so much joy and love into my life. One of the females is quite shy and likes to keep to herself, while the other is more outgoing and loves to play. The male cat is the most social of the three and loves nothing more than snuggling up next to me on the couch. It’s impressive to see how they have grown and thrived in a loving home environment. I feel so fortunate to have them in my life, and I can’t imagine not having these furry little companions around to brighten up my days. 😊

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  3. Love this Jim as it’s a good strategy. We missed three vital weeks with Maya as we only found out about her when she was 13 weeks old and these days pups leave their Mums around 10 weeks. There was no way we could carry her anywhere like we did Maggie, she was already too big. However, we have tried to introduce her to ‘our world’ and when talking to our trainer about how bad she had been in crowds, he said get down on her level and see what she sees. We understood much better then as all she could see were legs, pushchairs, walkers, scooters, and no space to walk.
    We continue to make progress and she loves people, but what amazes us is her instinct for a disability and then she is just marvellous.

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      1. Yes…oh yes. They probably are more intelligent than dogs…they are fascinating creatures. Their own language and herd mentality. Our dream would be to have a prairie dog community in our backyard but I’m not sure they can live in Tennessee…but I dont’ see why not though…they live from Texas to Canada…so they can handle cold and hot weather.

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