A Tale of Two Growlers

Perhaps, I complicate things too much. Other people get a new dog and they might not even tell their friends about it until someone literally runs into them while out on a walk. The same way, some people somehow seem to forget to mention…Well, some people are so tight lipped that they don’t share much about anything at all except perhaps to say: “I don’t want to talk about it.”

I, on the other hand, don’t miss a beat.

Map showing the road from Morpeth to Ettalong.

Map showing the road from Morpeth to Ettalong.

So like a long, drawn out TV drama series, Lady’s journey continues. The “Tenterfield Traveler” has been through Raymond Terrace North of Newcastle and detoured out to Morpeth for a scenic adventure and after going back and forth around Hexham trying to get onto the freeway to Sydney, has traveled down the freeway and she’s and down the windy bends of Woy Woy Road until she is where she is…sitting in the car on her lead while we duck out the back to get Bilbo, our 8 year old Border Collie who defends our home to the death from perceived intruders, especially postmen, anything on wheels and a friend who drives my kids to school. He has been warming up to other dogs over the last couple of months but generally prefers to sniff their scent on a pole rather than meeting up with a real, live dog. Introverted and rather timid, he usually keeps his distance although as I said, he’s improved and has become acquainted with a few dogs on our walks.

I have had my doubts about thrusting another dog into his world but he is starting to struggle a bit and also gets quite withdrawn from us as well. I’m hoping that having Lady here might give him a second wind but it may be that he isn’t that well and I have been meaning to take him to the vet. Obviously, the vet is going to tell me he needs to lose weight but you try telling him that. I’ve been taking him for walks and he might have lost a bit but he’s certainly no lean mean fitness machine.

Anyway…

Bilbo and Lady first meet out the front of the house. By this stage, Lady had spent the day with us and is very much at home. The kids, especially Miss, were doting on her and she was being showered in love and was constantly wagging her tail. So by the time we arrive home about 6.00PM after spending the day together, she had bonded with us but didn’t realise that another dog was part of the deal. Not just any dog either but a grumpy old man!

Bilbo meeting Lady. You can sense his apprehension.

Bilbo meeting Lady. You can sense his apprehension.

Well, all things considered their introduction didn’t go too badly. Bilbo gave a deep growl and Lady growled back. Realising that they weren’t about to become Romeo and Juliet quite yet and the road to true love was going to be at least a bit rocky, we decided to take them for a walk to get them used to each other on neutral territory. We popped into on some friends to introduce Lady and then took the dogs home.

Last night, wasn’t great. Still the odd growl and they were giving each other the serious cold shoulder and avoiding each other completely. It was like they had known each other in a former life and theirs was a very long saga of love followed by dashed hopes, rejection and ultimately going their separate ways. You know how it goes. Just call it “Hollywood”.

For awhile there I thought it was going to be like Geoff’s sister’s place where they had the “front door cat” and “the back door cat”. If Lady went right, Bilbo went left and we were having to coax them forward, especially Bilbo who was withdrawing. They are obviously going to establish some kind of hierarchy but in the mean time, we just want them both to feel comfortable. As yet, there hasn’t been a joint photo session quite yet. Just small steps…very small steps.

I’m pleased to report that they are starting to warm up to each other today and they’re happy to be within arm’s reach. That’s certainly an improvement. There are four of us and only two of them so there’s certainly enough love and cuddles to go round. I must admit too that I am enjoying having a smaller dog who have fit on my lap without squashing me to bits and I can pick her up easily too. She’s still larger than a lap dog but  small enough.

Lady is a great laptop dog!

Lady is a great laptop dog!

We’re also going to have to watch them with their food. Lady is perhaps off her food a bit and Bilbo is only too happy to be eating for two, which is not going to be doing his waistline any good!! Last night, Geoff made a comment: “Warning! Wide load!” He’s not wrong. Bilbo dwarfs Lady.

Lady went for a short "drive" in our daughter's vintage  pram. It is the same model pram that I had as a little girl.

Lady went for a short “drive” in our daughter’s vintage pram. It is the same model pram that I had as a little girl. I guess that makes me “vintage” too.

After a very playful day running through Morpeth with the kids yesterday, Lady is quite sleepy today or perhaps she’s feeling a bit reflective. She seems happy to be here but perhaps she is thinking about home, the human and dog families she’s left behind and wondering when she is going home. That said, a friend of mine who is an authority on things psychological, told me as long as you feed them, a dog is at home. That they adjust quickly. That said, she hasn’t barked yet.

As the day goes on, things are getting better. Not yet friends but not the tale of two growls any more.

Perhaps, they are giving peace a chance after all!

Negotiations continue...moving towards some kind of settlement. It's not easy to share.

Negotiations continue…moving towards some kind of settlement. It’s not easy to share.

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