At the end of the month, guess who's coming back home? Mei Ling! My black lab! My partner in crime! One of my best friends! I would say "YAY" if it were a joyful occasion. But it isn't. Mei Ling moved out because she got too rough with Halle and keeping her seperated (i.e. confined to the only other room Brad allows her to go) was getting to be too much. Compound that with her seperation anxiety, frequent barking and her reckless enthusiasm... it was a blessing that she's been able to stay with someone who cherishes her thoroughly.
Now that she's coming back, I'm mulling over all of my options. She's seven years old. And a lab. That's not great with kids. She has a snowball's chance in hell to get adopted. Take a look at Craigslist's pet section for a single day HERE. There are exactly 60 listings for lab mixes that need homes, just from the last 30 days. And a lot of those are puppies.
I considered no-kill shelters, but I didn't get any positive responses from them. One didn't even bother to reply to my email.
I considered muzzles, shock collars, and spray collars. A muzzle can only stay on a dog for up to two hours for safety reasons; if the dog is under stress (which is kinda why you might need a muzzle in the first place...) the time is even shorter. And the training collars - they're effective on young dogs and again, can only be worn for short periods of time during constant supervision. I don't even like the idea of a shock collar. I also think that she barks because of seperation anxiety, and getting a training collar would only solve the symptoms of an underlying problem that might just manifest in some other way. Mei Ling and I have irrational phobia in common and I don't want her to be scared.
I'm considering making an investment in a dog whisperer, or a dog-owner whisperer. I've gotten in touch with two already, but to be honest with you I can't decipher half of what they say on their messages! They're both foreign and I'm phone-deaf as it is. If I'm going to pay for a miracle to happen, I want to be able to absorb all of it.
This is a highly emotional issue that Brad and I can't seem to agree on. We both agree that Halle comes first; that's not even part of the debate. This is my dog. The puppy I adopted in Chapel Hill. The puppy that got free from the backyard and sat on the front porch for hours, patiently waiting for me to come home. The puppy that didn't used to need a leash, that grew into a dog so afraid of thunderstorms she tried to climb on top of a dryer. My nuzzling, loving, hairy, jealous mess. One of my best friends.
If *anyone* has any ideas for me, leads on a trainer, or is willing to foster her for a time, please get in touch. This is tearing me apart.
"I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive." - Gilda Radner
"My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am." - Author Unknown