Sophie is our second foster pup through Basset & Beagle Rescue of the Heartland. We picked her up the weekend of Thanksgiving after she had been living in a shelter in Missouri. We don’t know too much about her other than that she is 6 years old & a Beagle mix of some sort. I am not sure where her light brown color & lanky limbs come from but I think it makes her unique! She also came to us with the name Sophie so we decided to keep it! I think it fits her + she responds to it. Prior to the shelter, we learned that she had been living outside on a farm when she was rescued. We were told that this farm was a “dumping ground” so to speak for animals that people didn’t want anymore. The dogs were rescued after the husband passed away & the wife could no longer care for them. I have no idea if she was ever someone’s pet or if she lived there her entire life. (Some of this is a repeat of what I posted on my former blog)Our first night with her was tough. Other than the shelter, I don’t think she had ever lived inside. She was terrified of everything! We let her roam around the house & sniff things out but one of the first things she did was pee/poo on the kitchen floor. Our kitchen has a back area that used to be a porch but was made into a breakfast nook so we blocked that off with a gate. She laid in the kennel for awhile or she would hide under our table. We brought her into the living room later in the evening when she laid in the corner until it was time for bed.When we put her in the kennel for the night, that’s when things took a turn. She seemed to do fine for about the first 20 minutes but then started barking constantly. We tried putting the kennel in our bedroom so she could see that we were in there but she started barking again within a few minutes. Then we tried just letting her loose in the nook area (with it gated off) but she started jumping up on the table, messing with our blinds, and still barking. Back in the kennel she went (at 2:00am, mind you) but I decided to turn on a light in our kitchen which got her to stop barking… at least for awhile. She started again around 3:45am and at 8:00am which is when we learned that she had peed/pooed all over the kennel & herself. In the bathtub she went which she hated! Once she was out & dried, she spent the entire day hiding under our table. We figured we traumatized her enough by leaving her in the kennel all night + throwing her in the bathtub so we just let her be.
I’m not someone that cries very often but I was in tears that morning out of frustration (and probably lack of sleep). I thought about calling the Rescue & asking them to find someone with more experience to foster her. But then again, we didn’t want to give up only 12 hours into having her so we decided to see how the day went & go from there. The next night went a little better although her whining woke me up around 2:30am. I took her outside just in case she was going to end up having an accident in the kennel but I think she just wanted our attention + wanted out of the kennel.
She is a very scared & timid dog! She will jump at any loud or unfamiliar noise and her entire body will tremble until she is able to calm herself down. I don’t think she sleeps very much just because any little noise will wake her up. Since she lived outside & wasn’t around humans very much, she is very skeptical of people. She still gets nervous around us but I think she is slowly getting more comfortable. She’s definitely not a cuddly dog but loves to be pet & having her ears rubbed. The first week that we had her, we would bring her out into the living room (with the leash only because she isn’t allowed free roam of our house) but she would go straight to the corner to try to hide.
Mornings seem to be a stressful time for her, even on the weekends. I’ve been getting up with her during the week to take her outside but as soon as she is back inside, she starts whining/crying. She also has decided that she doesn’t want to eat anything in the mornings because she would rather just pace & whine. I’m not sure if this is anxiety or if she just wants our attention because she won’t do this in the evenings.
Kennel training has been a process. She has gotten better about being in it overnight although she still has accidents occasionally. We resorted to using puppy pads because she would pee on any blankets or towels that were in it. We haven’t had a poo incident since our first night — praise the Lord! She will not go into the kennel voluntarily & we basically have to pick her up to put her in it. We try to give her treats when she goes in there but she just spits them out like she’s mad at us.
We were told that she was a “run risk” so we’ve kept her on the leash whenever she’s outside. We have yet to take her on a walk anywhere besides the backyard only because it’s been so cold plus she might have a heart attack from all the sounds & cars.
Last weekend, she finally decided that the fuzzy dog bed in the living room wasn’t a scary object & was actually pretty comfortable! This has kind of been her safe haven ever since. The bad thing is that she won’t usually lay on it unless it’s in the corner between our couches. I’ve been trying to put it in front of the couches in order for her to not resort to the corner all the time. Some days it works, other days it doesn’t. She doesn’t seem to care much about laying on the furniture & hasn’t even tried to jump up on it. Then again, we’ve been a little hesitant to let her lay on it only because she’s not quite housebroken yet.
As for her health, she is heart worm positive & will undergo treatment at the end of January. Right now, she is on an antibiotic which she has to take for a month. Then, she as a month off from the antibiotic before treatment begins. She doesn’t seem to be in any pain although I’m sure it doesn’t feel too good to have worms in your heart & lungs. I’m going to try to get her vaccines & microchip this week as long as she isn’t too nervous.
This has been quite a novel but she has definitely kept us busy & on our toes ever since we got her! I’ll leave you with my favorite picture of her thus far — I love how she crossed her paws (and no, I did not pose her this way!).