Found on the streets, this nervous girl needed rehabilitation to become a sweet pet dog
Mid-June, and a passer-by spots a retriever-type dog looking shabby and unwell, lying in a shady spot. They call the Dog Warden and the dog is brought to us to be cared for.
We name her Muffin, and take her to the vet suite for a check up. She is urine-stained, with matted fur on her belly and behind her ears. The team count 15 ticks just at first glance. Muffin succumbs to the examination, but it is because she has shut down – we’re going to have to take it very slow from here and help her build some trust in people again.
For the first week, we keep a steady calm and friendly presence. We bring food and soothing words, and see where she is willing to let us in. Over the week, she becomes worried and panics if she thinks you are coming close, but this is better than being shut down – we can work with this.
A week later, and we can walk Muffin to the paddock for some time outside, which she adores. We can see her relaxing and coming out of her shell. It takes two weeks before we can put a harness on her, so she can go for a longer walk. We find her some doggie friends to show her that walks are fun, and so are we!
As well walking and handling, we teach Muffin some basics of being a pet dog. She likes being in our real-life room on the sofa, but worries on how to get down. Originally terrified of the shower room, she learns that being groomed can be OK (and treat-full!).
Six weeks after she was brought to us, we feel confident that we can see her personality and the home that she needs to continue her rehabilitation. It is heartwarming that her original finder was interested in adopting, so we checked that their home matched Muffin’s needs – and it did! They were a family confident in working with a nervous dog, and keen to adopt.
Two weeks after adoption, we caught up with them to see how she was doing. They have named her Crunchie.
“Crunchie is doing really well, more confident each day. Took her for her first trip out on Sunday, she was a bit unsure at first, but did amazing. We walked through the park and back through the quiet streets of town. She even let a few people say hello to her. Love this girl to bits already.”
And a month after, another updates shows that she continues to conquer new experiences at home, and out and about. We’re so proud of her!
"She is doing really well and such a smiley happy girl, and a pleasure to own. She’s decided she loves the paddling pool, sandpit and trampoline! We took her out to meet one of our customers and their dog at the weekend and ended up in the pub garden where she was very chilled, I really thought she might struggle with that but she loved it."