Jack has anxiety. He’s afraid of other dogs, which if I let it get to me, is sad. He is excluded from the raucous dog club. He doesn’t sniff butts or tangle leases with his friends. Instead, he is visibly distressed when he is around other dogs.
After lots of work, he is better. He now walks past most dogs (still working on German Shepherds) without whining or barking like the world is crashing down around him. He has found his confidence and owns the walks these days, but it has taken years, and every day is different.
I’m not sure why he is this way. I’ve had him since he was 8 weeks old. He was raised in the desert so coyotes were his first other-dog exposure. Maybe that’s it. Or maybe it’s because I’m not crazy social and didn’t expose him enough at an early age. Perhaps, it’s his food, or maybe he has a genetic disorder or a million other maybes.
Whatever the reason, Jack doesn’t like being around other dogs. He’s also not a fan of car rides or loud movies. He likes his people and Callie, his mobile groomer. He carries sticks and chews knucklebones. Chases bees. He needs routine and quiet. He gives you his paw, sits like a human, and makes a mess when he drinks water.
He is the sweetest soul, and I adore him, but most dogs and people never get to see my Jack. Again, I could be sad. Instead, I am grateful he lets me love him, feels safe in his home, and loves me in return.
Perfect is perspective.
My thoughts from the laundry room. Share the Bed.