Grrr!

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Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:20 am

The trainer who claims she wants Z back bailed on today's pickup.

So far, she's had SIX excuses for not helping this dog, two of which were to get her back.

She has until tomorrow. Then I'm going to list Z as a foster and find her a home myself. Z is probably better off with someone else anyway.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby SherriA » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:44 am

Oh no! How frustrating for you! And it's got to be stressful managing her and Ronan still, especially when you expected to be done with that by now.

I'm sorry this hasn't gone well at any stage of the process.
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Re: Grrr!

Postby Amanda » Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:28 am

I would make sure you document your correspondence so you don't run into any trouble if you place her yourself. She sounds like a lovely dog. Where do you live? My brother just turned in his military Malinois for training. I wonder if he'd be interested. She'd have a great home. He's in Texas.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby JudyL » Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:37 am

This has to be frustrating for you. I'd be careful in considering the rehoming though. Maybe some of the people who deal with the rescues will chime in about the legality of rehoming at this point in time. Who is considered the legal owner at this point? Are you the owner because some specified # of days in your state has passed so that Z is considered "abandoned" so that you have become her owner? Is the trainer her owner? Is the owner immediately preceding the trainer Z's owner? It's a sad situation for Z and frustrating for you, but dogs are considered property in the eyes of the law, and I wouldn't want you to be mixed up in any further mess than you are already in.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby JudyL » Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:41 am

One other thing - where is the original breeder in all of this mess? Wasn't Z supposed to go back to the breeder if the original placement didn't work out, and shouldn't she possibly go back there? I don't recall the story now, was the breeder the spot where you thought Z would be just part of a group of dogs in training that wouldn't be ideal?

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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:42 am

Ronan and Z finally 'met' on Sunday. We took them for a long walk to the park. I put R in a batting cage with me, and removed his leash. Hubby let Z approach. She submissively leaned into the chain link. Ronan was snarky at first, but by the third attempt, was full-on sniffing her. Tense, a little 'I'm-not-sure' high tail wag, but at least he wasn't pitched forward, tight-mouthed and rigid. He even lightly mouthed her through the fence. Yeah, stop tasting Ziva, Ronan!
I'm not great at reading their body language as I should, but I'm seeing curiosity and nervousness instead of downright "OMG! ZOMBIE! RUN! KILL IT!" from Ronan.
Z clearly thinks Ronan is unstable from her ears/head down, curl into a ball and be small posturing. She LOVES the golden who lives behind us. Very happy girl with that one. Refuses to play ball today because it's wet outside. She's currently sleeping (and snoring) on the couch in the basement while hubby works. Definitely part lab in a mal costume.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Tue Apr 07, 2015 11:05 am

Judy - the original breeder (who lives in GA or SC, not sure) isn't in the picture. Doesn't want Z back at all - doesn't take dogs back.

This is so hard without putting in names, LOL! So I'm using initials.

The trainer sold Z as a pup to D and claims to have tried to buy Z back from him. But after 6 months, D gave the dog to J, a fellow fireman. The trainer called J and said that if he ever couldn't keep her, to call her. A year passes and J can't keep Z because his and his wife's jobs have changed and they now also have a baby - it's too much for them to handle. So J gave me the dog with the trainer's blessing, but trainer said that if it didn't work out that she wanted Z back - that a LOT of people were chomping at the bit for Z, including M, a mal person who called her several times about Z's availibitly - that she had a lot of people looking for a sport dog like Z. She's failed IPO, failed SAR. Not drivey enough. Longer story.

I digress.

Well, where are these interested parties? I can deliver Z directly to them, here in GA, SC, NC, TN...

And why can't I just hook up with M? I mean, if M keeps bugging the trainer about Z, this should be a no brainer, right? So I asked. Well, suddenly, M is out of town for two weeks. Hmmm. Not buying the story - and that's saying something since I'm an author and get paid to write fiction. I've called J, and he is okay with me finding Z a better home. He can't take her back, but is all for me doing whatever works for Z.

Anyone else smell a rat with the trainer?

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Re: Grrr!

Postby maxs_mommy » Tue Apr 07, 2015 11:38 am

Wow! I'd be careful too to establish chain of ownership and then yeah, F the "trainer" and I'd find Z an awesome home.
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Re: Grrr!

Postby SherriA » Tue Apr 07, 2015 12:20 pm

So the trainer hasn't actually had Ziva in her possession for over a year (maybe close to 2 yrs?) and doesn't have a contract saying that Z comes to her if D can't keep her? Then I'd say you need to work with J, not the trainer. I'm assuming J licensed her and is on record somewhere as Z's owner, and it's up to him where she goes and how you look out for her best interests!
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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Tue Apr 07, 2015 2:03 pm

The trainer hasn't been in possession of Z since late-mid 2013.

I'll make a copy of all the texts from my phone. She backed out of tonight's meeting as well. Next step: tell her I'll deliver Z to her doorstep. Want to bet she won't take me up on that, either? I have no idea what this woman wants except lifetime rights to a dog she doesn't want to have possession of and to demand access to other people's dogs - or else. She wanted Ronan and Z at her place or it was a no deal - I had to return Z. I said no deal - she's not coming within a country mile of Ronan despite her repeated mentions of 'anyone' calling the authorities on dogs like Ronan as part of the Dangerous Dog Act. WTF? Ronan? Seriously? But she keeps saying it, so she's making me a bit nervous.

I do wonder WHO has legal right to Z? Me, since nothing was ever signed and I have Z's vet records?

AMANDA - I live in NE Georgia. She truly is a lovely girl. She won't make a good military dog, though. Way too soft, and only moderate drive. She's likely to lick someone to death instead of attack, LOL! I do think she could easily be a sport dog, just not hard core. Or just a great hiking/jogging partner. I'm sure Z would be happy doing something fun. If that's what he'd want, Z could be a fit.

Meanwhile, Ronan is okay with seeing Z in his yard, but isn't thrilled with her approaching him at all. Of course, he's all fine and dandy with sniffing her backside through a chainlink fence. She just can't LOOK at him because that's scary (zombies! omg! Mom! It's a FAST moving zombie, and that's REALLY freakin' scary!). I keep working at it, though. I've told Ronan that he's still managed to find a way to be mischievous in his middle years - that he's supposed to like Z, not think it's World War Z.

It's all sad. Ronan was supposed to have a great, active playmate. A family was supposed to know their once beloved dog found a forever home. I was going to get a fun dog to go places with and take everywhere - maybe find a dog sport we both liked. She's what I call a mal with training wheels. But crazy trainer is way too much for me. Ronan dislikes her and Z stresses out when he stresses out. She'll pant and pace like a caged animal. She sure loves that golden behind us, though. Lots of happiness going on there.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby Amanda » Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:46 pm

My brother isn't military. He's a paramedic and he and his wife fostered a Mal puppy for the military puppy raising program. A dog like Z sounds like just what he'd love. I'll ask him and if it comes to you placing her, maybe it would work. They have a lab/pit female and she's missing her playmate too. :)

This whole situation sounds super fishy. Have you met the trainer ever? How did Z get to you?

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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Wed Apr 08, 2015 10:32 am

Amanda - Z came to me by recommendation from our vet. I told her that I was looking for a female companion for Ronan. She asked what I wanted, and I told her that I'd love an aussie or mal, or dutchie, but didn't think that'd work for now as they were too much energy. We agreed that Ronan would do best with a nice female golden and that if she knew of someone with a 3-6 yr old golden, she'd let me know. The trainer is actually a friend of my vet's. A few weeks ago, I got the call that she knew of a mal that acted more like a lab and that a trainer could vouch that this sounded like a perfect match. I spoke to the trainer by phone about Z, and she swore Z was lab-ish (she's dead on about that part), and that if I took her in, she'd come out to evaluate the two and give me her honest opinion if it had a fighting chance of working or not. If it didn't, she take Z right then and there. I was set to have Z here a whole two days before this happened.

Sunday turned to Wednesday. Wed turned to Friday. Friday turned into the FOLLOWING Friday with me surrendering Ronan to her and subjecting him to her methods. You can see how this all fell apart quickly. She said she had people lined up for Z, but I don't see a lick of evidence of this. We've scheduled a place and time 3 times for her to come get Z. It hasn't happened. Today, she'd completely radio silent - won't return calls or texts. She bailed yesterday because she said she had a crown replacement that turned into a root canal. I'm not trying to be insensitive, but I don't believe her.

Yeah, my vet recommended her. That complicates things in a big way, doesn't it?

I'm checking into the legalities of who has full rights over Z. If the trainer sold Z to D, and it wasn't in the contract then that he return her, I don't see that she has a leg to stand on. But I don't trust her one bit and I have to be sure I won't end up in small claims court. And I can now clearly see why D didn't return her at all and just gave Z to J. The trainer said D was the one to flake, but I'm thinking he didn't want to return Z to her because of reasons similar to what I'm seeing/learning/going through.

Poor Z. I love her to pieces. But Ronan isn't showing any signs of accepting her. Before, he seemed interested. Now, he won't look at her and if she approaches, he goes nuts. Then Z stresses by pacing up a storm and panting. I have to let her out to sit by the back fence with the neighbor's golden to calm her down. She and the golden are fence buddies and he seems to make Z very very happy.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby UpwardDog » Wed Apr 08, 2015 11:22 am

Did you talk to your vet about them boarding this dog SHE recommended of HER friend since it is certainly not good for either for her to be at your house?

It's not fair to you or either dog at this point.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Wed Apr 08, 2015 11:55 am

I haven't - yet. I was trying not to make things worse, but I suppose the worst that could happen is they say no and that I end up finding a different vet to take Ronan going forward.

I've never brought in a second dog where the first didn't accept the new one. Wow. On an emotional level, this is incredibly painful. I feel like a jerk for thinking Ronan was ready. It sounded like such a great chance to try things out, too. I know... if it sounds too good to be true... *sigh*

It isn't fair. I feel horrible for both dogs to the point that it aches. I feel guilty for going down this path. Ronan is doing better than Z in that he seems perfectly content as long as she isn't too close to him. Z on the other hand - oh, my heart bleeds. She wants so badly to know she's accepted and loved. She tries to please everyone - human or dog - that she comes in contact with. Hubby and I love her to pieces and I know that she's already bonding with us. I feel for Z the most. How is she going to feel when we give her up, too? Where's her stability? Her forever home?

And now I must go love on her. I keep telling her that she's far better than we deserve. How I wished this could have worked out. But forcing her on Ronan isn't fair either. And what to do? Find another trainer/behaviorist for help? To what end, really? She has such potential that I think she'd be better off with someone who could help her reach that - and build her confidence. And of course, another dog who would accept her and be her best buddy.

I know we'll miss her greatly. :bawl:

Ronan says, "Not so much."

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Re: Grrr!

Postby Amanda » Wed Apr 08, 2015 5:13 pm

So you got her direct from J and never met the trainer. Gotcha. From what I can tell, J is the legal owner and if he says she can be placed, trainer has no grounds. and I 100% agree. She's shady. So sorry for the stress to everyone. But remember that dogs live in the moment. Z doesn't know you were intended to be her forever home. For all she knows, you are a pet sitter and her family is on vacation. She will be ok.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:29 am

BTW, instead of filling up the photo thread with Ziva pics, I put them on Dropbox for now. Yeah, we may have taken quite a few - I only uploaded a third of what we took. Isn't she beautiful?

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/q8dcxnicaxvp ... qXEja?dl=0

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Re: Grrr!

Postby SherriA » Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:40 am

She's beautiful! And she looks like so much fun - happy snuggling and sitting close, but also alert and attentive and interested out in the yard, etc. Someone is going to hit the jackpot when the get her.
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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:57 am

I agree, Sherri!

She's so much fun. Z needs a good deal of training (despite what the trainer says, no one has spent any time on this girl). I feel that Ziva could do all sorts of things. She has a huge, sensitive heart that just wants to please. She lacks confidence, but after all she's gone through, who can blame her?

She has a MAJOR squirrel fetish, ball fetish, and can't see a golden retriever in the park or neighborhood without getting all happy and excited. When she meets them, she submits like a puppy. When we're done, she's got a bounce in her step. I think she'd do well in a household with another dog or at least someone who will be her world and take her to meet up with other super-friendly dogs.

If I had to describe her, she's like an overly energetic lab puppy instead of a 2-yr-old. She's not a barker, and my guess is that if someone broke into the house, she'd lick the burglar to death. Death by facial exfoliation and preening?

We walked about 3 miles this morning, stopping to investigate whatever she wanted. Then we played ball in the yard for about 10 minutes before she decided she wanted back inside. Within minutes, she was asleep on her favorite place - the couch. If you happen to lay down on the couch, Ziva will lay down ON you, most likely your head. LOL!

I've stopped trying to get Ronan to like her. The more I try, the more he resists. Currently, the best he can do is ignore her instead of being snarky. At least he's learned to turn his head when she approaches, or grumbles and walks away. If she comes TOO close though, he's right back into freak out mode which upsets Z greatly. He simply doesn't want anything to do with her. She's taken to avoiding him, too - even on walks.

ETA: She rides in the car beautifully. Crates nicely, too. No whimpering! While she's friendly to everyone in public, she slinks and paces when out in large crowds until she's familiar with her surroundings. I think this is simply a lack of confidence and she'd overcome it quickly as she loves to meet people.
She's a counter cruiser. Even the sink isn't safe as she WILL jump up ON the counter to investigate what's thawing out for dinner.
Cats - I don't trust her with them at all as she seems to eye the neighborhood cats as large rabbits.

Can you tell I love her and want the best for her?

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Re: Grrr!

Postby Sabine » Thu Apr 09, 2015 1:42 pm

What a pretty girl. Someone could have a fun career in dog sports with her. It would be great if things would work out with Amanda's brother!
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Re: Grrr!

Postby Jen » Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:38 pm

I want her! I can't have her, but I want her! I sure hope someone wonderful gets her. :)

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Re: Grrr!

Postby Emily » Fri Apr 10, 2015 10:42 am

What Jen said! She sounds awesome, and if I didn't have the crew I did, I'd be setting up a meeting! I'm sorry ya'll are going through this - how stressful :frown:

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Re: Grrr!

Postby SherriA » Fri Apr 10, 2015 11:29 am

I can't have her because my messed up knees and achilles mean I couldn't give her what she needs. But damned, she sounds like my fantasy (when I'm healthy) dog.
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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:40 pm

And she's gone.

'W' picked her up yesterday afternoon. She'll be okay and will have a sport home where she'll probably do either flyball or freestyle frisbee, but we are heartbroken. Okay, so Ronan isn't upset at all. I know that she wasn't with us long, but I really miss her terribly. She was so loving, such a velcro dog. Her intelligence amazed me and she was a total blast to work with and train. Her athleticism was incredible. With her, I thought the sky was the limit in what we could do together. And did I mention how incredibly loving she was?

Yesterday, I sat with her in the backyard bright and early in the morning. As usual, she leaned against me and we watched the birds and squirrels and the neighborhood come to life. She seemed to sense I was very sad and literally crawled up in my lap.

I'll probably never get the chance to own another dog like her. But for three weeks, I drove a Ferrari.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby SherriA » Mon Apr 13, 2015 1:26 pm

Oh man, I can imagine how you must feel. That's part of the reason I don't foster: I'm afraid I'd meet the most amazing dog ever, but a dog that doesn't fit into my current household, and have to give him/her up to a more appropriate home. The right thing to do for everyone, but man, I can just imagine the hole she leaves behind.

Sending some peaceful thoughts your way, Michelle
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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Mon Apr 13, 2015 4:25 pm

I admit it, Sherri: I cried. I came to love Ziva very much. She'd been through so much that my mama bear attitude kicked in. And, since we had hoped to keep her, I wasn't as careful with my heart. Ziva was also a snuggler, often crawling in our laps and looked at us with soft, brown eyes that just pled for someone to love her. She'd wag her tail hard if we simply smiled at her. During training, if I got excited and praised her, she'd prance and get so proud of herself.

The past few days she'd finally started walking with her tail out instead of between her legs. She'd vibrate in a sit-stay while waiting for me to throw the ball. She was our little parkour or Matrix dog - she'd literally 'bounce' off trees and the back fence when chasing down a ball. I've never seen anything like it. But she'd be calm enough to drop it at my feet, then vibrate in a sit-stay until I threw the next ball. She's going to make one hell of a frisbee dog or flyball girl.

'W' must have thought I was insane. I brought her crate pad, her food, and a BIG bag of toys. I was teary-eyed like an overprotective mother sending an only child to summer camp. It's rainy here and I know she hates the rain. One night during a potty break, she hid under the deck and peeked out like I was the senseless human standing in the rain. LOL!

I have a lot of great photos and memories. And a great big hole in my heart. I don't know how foster moms do it.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby UpwardDog » Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:22 pm

I hope this is a forever home and she will be very happy. I can't keep the letters straight is W a new owner or the trainer or..?

I foster and I do ok moving them on to new homes because I've been able to hold out for really good ones where I know the dog will be very happy. I won't foster for a group that doesn't give fosters control. I'm usually only sad for a day because very soon I get happy updates and photos. That's what really makes it for me.

I think it would be a LOT harder in your situation where you've been through a lot, losing a heart dog and then feeling like Z could have been another heart dog, but you had to send her on.

I hope in time you can get Ronan's issues improved such that you can add another dog successfully.

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Re: Grrr!

Postby 2dogpack » Tue Apr 14, 2015 6:42 am

W is new.

The one thing I can say about all this is that Ziva showed me my strengths and shortcomings as a trainer. Being a Mal, I guess I should have expected it. She was a lot of work - it took 2.5-3 hours a day to work her sufficiently. She was also quick, so if I made a mistake in speed of command or consistency, she pointed it out.

Now that she's gone, I know where Ronan needs the most work. We're proceeding with the rebonding period my akita friend suggested, then moving on to more tricks and situations that build Ronan's confidence. Meanwhile, I need to step up my knowledge of canine body language and recognize things faster. I'm going to try working on the Click to Calm method.

We are getting another dog! But it's a fake, stuffed one. I'm on the garage sale hunt (if not, Amazon) for something that's his size. I noticed that he tends to view these large stuffed dogs the same way he views real ones. LOL! A local trainer uses them to help owners gauge their dogs' safe zone and to help reduce distance.

Eventually, I'll need to work with a trainer who has a non-reactive dog. But for now, it's back to basics for Ronan.


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