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What is wrong with people?

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Hi everyone,


I haven't popped in to introduce myself or anything yet, but I've been lurking for weeks. I feel like I know a few of you already...


I didn't know what event was going to make me finally post. I assumed that it was going to be about barking, or maybe too much puppy teeth, or crate training, or...


But yesterday our wait was over, and we brought our 8 1/2 week old puppy home. I was prepared. I had the crate, the x pen, I had been poring over Patricia McConnell's book (and a bunch of training books, Mary Ray, etc.), I even got a cordless doorbell to call the (teenage) kids so we didn't have to shout up the stairs and startle her. I was ready for almost anything.


And...I got a perfect cartoon puppy. Happy, full of energy, friendly, beautiful. I warned the kids in advance not to try to cuddle her too much, because we're monkeys and they're wolves, etc., but Carmen insists. Turns out, she's a huge cuddler.


Not only that, she is so eager to play, and she loves her toys, and she knows just what to do with them. But puppies are puppies, so I prepared for the sleepless night next to the crate. We went to bed at 12. She whined and barked a little for...90 seconds, calming down when I put my fingers through the crate and left them there. Then she just went to sleep. She woke at 3, peed (outside!) right away, then came back in and went right back to sleep. I think she woke again at 6, but she didn't ask to get out of the crate until 6:30. That was shocking... No mess in the crate, either.


She caught on to toileting today and has almost done it all outside today (only two little pee slips.) This was from a dog that had not been outside before (I think yesterday was the first time she saw the sky, it made her quite nervous, but she loved going out that night when it was dark.) We bought her from a reputable farm breeder, but this is Canada, so the puppies were exercising indoors.


I think maybe she's got an off switch already? She tears around the yard at top speed, checking out every single thing in the yard, but then she comes in and sleeps on my foot. I've barely used the x pen, because she's just not much trouble. Most of the time, she entertains herself with her toys, killing them all ferociously. She'll take a break for a nuzzle, then trots back off to play. It's honestly a bit eerie.


So we did a vet check today (the breeder contract said we had to in the first three days). And it turns out, THAT is what I'm writing to fume about. So:


She's in the cat crate, she's really frightened but I'm calming her down okay, (it didn't help that the vet was on a busier street than she's probably heard in her life, coming from a farm) and the receptionist comes over and does this:




Grabbing her face and mauling her little body in the crate. After I had been there stroking her, soft low voice, trying to get her to stop shivering.


Me: She's really nervous...

Me: I don't think she likes that...

Her: (To me) It's okay! It's REALLY OKAY.




And I'm dying, but the vet's gotta come any minute, right? I put myself between this woman and my dog, while she's chattering on at top volume about how her sister loves border collies, bla bla...SOOO CUUUTE YEAHHH! (more groping) and I am insinuating my body between them as much as I can, but she is not taking hints.


Finally we get to the vet. Who, among other things, hasn't heard of Baer testing. (Carmen has 1 white ear, and hears me fine, but maybe I'd like to get it checked?) The vet is trying to sell us puppy food, even though the breeder said this food (Great Canadian Dog Food) was good for puppies as well. We go through the exam, puppy is terrified, and while the vet is droning on about something or other at length, Carmen's trying to crawl into my shirt. She's freaking out. I say, "okay, can we go over all of this at the vaccination visit later? I think she needs to go home."


So after the little mini-confrontation with the receptionist, I figured at least she'd leave my dog alone now long enough to get out of there. But (see title of this thread). She starts back up again as if to prove her point.


PUPPYWHOSAGOODPUPPYYEAHYEAH (reaching in her crate, I had put her away!) pulling on her head.


Then she asks if she can take her picture, and I say..."I think she's had enough for now..." and she insists, "it's for the file!" And starts to grab her.


But my puppy is cowering in the crate, and she reaches PAST me to pull her out. Roughly. Like she couldn't see or feel that the puppy was terrified of her and she's SCRAPING her on the crate.


So I lost it. "I DON'T LIKE THIS!" I shouted it. And the receptionist jumped back.


I closed the crate right up and rushed out the door with my dog, leaving my husband there, literally holding the bag. Ha! He paid, I got her in the car, we're never going back.


But seriously, what is wrong with people? And how dare she say, as if she had some kind of authority, "It's REALLY okay." It's REALLY MY DOG, lady, you don't know her, and I tried to tell you nicely.


So there it is. My story. After reading you guys for weeks, I felt like someone here would lend some support that I'm not overprotective. It was really awful. My poor puppy ran all of her stress off around the yard when we got home, clearly not herself, and way overexcited, then passed out cold under my chair. She's been up and around and seems okay, but now she's passed out again.


The only question I have is that she's starting to get a little obsessed with her reflection in the (black, shiny) piano. She tries to figure out how to get behind it. Should I be concerned? It's cute, but I thought fixating was something to watch, yes? Is this the shadow thing? For now, I think it's okay?


Thanks guys for all the useful info. This site is so valuable as an archive, not to mention the service you're all doing for the integrity of the breed. And thanks for reading my long, rambling story. Here's a puppy pic for your trouble.



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Congrats on the new puppy. I am happy that she is so perfect - now. Just wait a while. Tee Hee. As you know, puppies will be puppies, and stuff happens - to everyone. Just keep an even keel and a sense of humor.


Is this a new vet for you? Or do you have other animals that you bring to that vet? Certainly not a good start for a vet relationship. I hope you can find a more knowledgeable vet (including staff) that you feel comfortable with.


We have all been surprised at times by clueless people. I think you will be better mentally prepared for later inappropriate interactions and can step in to stop them sooner. We all have to learn.


The vet exam might be stressful the first time. I will usually bring (lots of) treats with me to distract and mollify the puppy. Even my older dogs, who are fine with the vet, still get treats during vet visits.

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Welcome to the Boards. And congrats on the new -- and very cute -- puppy.


New dogs and even pups can go through a period after coming into their new home where they're on their best behavior till they figure out the new environment. It's called a honeymoon period and can last from a couple of weeks to several months. Usually the very young puppies adapt pretty quickly, even in just a few days. But then all the puppy antics begin and you start to see the dog or pup's true personality. And especially with puppies that can mean a lot of devilment. :D


I'm surprised because of this alone that you were required to take the pup to the vet within just 3 days. Not nearly enough time, IMO, to expect the pup to acclimate, especially if she was at all traumatized by the transition.


Your experience at the vet was absolutely horrible. I don't think I'd have been nearly so patient with the receptionist, who was really clueless. In fact, I think the receptionist might have lost a couple of fingers in the crate door as I slammed it shut. I'd also be looking for a new vet if that'd happened to me, with an explanation as to why I was switching. Or if I really liked the vet for some reason I'd be calling and telling them how inappropriately the receptionist had behaved and that I won't tolerate it happening again.


Definitely lots of treats when she goes to the vet from now on. If you can, some quick in and out trips with lots of treats but no interactions with anyone. Then have a responsible and appropriately behaved receptionist dole out treats so she can develop some positive associates there.

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Gcv- Oh, I know not to count my chickens. Or puppies. :D Today we got lucky, but tomorrow's always going to be another day.


But right now, it's all humour! It's like she's making fun of us for thinking we knew how it would go. Like tonight, she fell asleep in her crate all by herself. All I had to do was shut the door. How am I going to crate "train" her if she keeps this up? I've watched so many youtube videos...


Or we'll just crack up as she prances across the living room with a giant red kong bone in her mouth like she's the teacher's pet in dog class. She's just ridiculous.


This is our neighbourhood vet that we use with our cats and we used with our last dog before he died. They were okay before, but they have had a lot of turnover, and I can't say I really know anyone there anymore. We've been fortunate to have very healthy animals until our dog died of cancer, and that went pretty quickly, so we weren't in the office much. Still, I think they'll be surprised we're leaving and why.

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Thank you, GentleLake. That's a great idea to have some low-key, treat-laden visits to the vet. Whichever way we go with it.


To be honest, I was a little disappointed in myself for letting that nonsense go on so long. But when it's happening, it's really hard to stop it, especially when it's so unexpected and they're playing the authority card this way. I was actually looking forward to the visit, and didn't expect it to be such a disaster, so I was totally unprepared to confront anyone.


And yes, at the time, shouting, closing the crate and walking out was the least dramatic image floating through my mind. There were...others...believe me. ha.

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Wow - how awful! Dont beat yourself up over it though. Stuff happens and we tend to be a bit taken back when people are so in your face especially when were at their place.


Do find a different vet. You should be able to sensibly advocate for your dog and they should respect that and work with you as much as possible. I just had an excellent experiences at the state vet hospital with mine. I emailed the vet my concerns ahead of time (since theres not really a chance to build a face to face relationship in that setting). They acknowledged them, gave me a quiet, low key area to wait with her, and made sure that she was with me as much as possible. My local vet also listens to my concerns and works with them as possible.


Even if you are a bit overprotective a good vet should be able to talk you down a bit and set you at ease. I think I can come across as a bit OCD at times. But I also try to be pretty polite and grateful and the vets who Ive worked with have largely been great at explaining things and setting my mind at ease. So find one that you click with and work hard to build a good relationship!

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Hi Mara,


I think you're right, even if it was a little protective (hypothetical) they should know how to work with people. Petside manner? ;) I'm sure I didn't just coin that.


Today was the first day Carmen was introduced to the cello (my son plays, we had been holding off, but he had a lesson). I treated her the whole time, and she clearly thought it was a bit scary, but she just ate her treats in the other room and did okay. She was very sociable with the teacher. The upside of all of that is the cello teacher told me about the vet she used for years, who she said was wonderful, and works in house calls? I looked him up and it's true! So I'll be looking into that. Pretty cool.

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I've had bad luck with vet techs and receptionists, and occasionally vets themselves who just want to hustle through an appointment and get to the next one. For example, I've been to a couple different vets (I move around a lot) who will want to take my dog into the back, out of my sight, to do almost everything. While I can understand there are several good reasons they want to do this, it doesn't work for me or my dogs. I have one who is scared, but will calm right down for almost anything if I am still in view. I have another who loves all the new people at the vet a little too much, but will obey my commands and ignore a stranger's, making it easier for everyone involved if I'm present to tell him what to do.


I don't mind if they want to take them back. I mind A LOT when I try to gently explain why it's in everyone's best interest, foremost my dogs', if they either allow me in the back with them or do everything in the exam room but am brushed off or ignored. That doesn't fly with me. I now try to speak directly with the vet before the appt if at all possible if it's a new vet. Regardless, I don't tolerate a vet tech or receptionist telling me what they will or won't do with my dogs. I'm calm and polite of course, but they are my dogs, either listen to me or I'll find someone who will.


It unfortunately took multiple bad experiences for me to get to this point, definitely do not feel bad that your pup had one bad experience. Good on you for sticking up for her!

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It unfortunately took multiple bad experiences for me to get to this point, definitely do not feel bad that your pup had one bad experience. Good on you for sticking up for her!


Thanks. :) And yes. Ultimately, they're not wildlife, they're our pets. So we're part of the equation, right?


I brought this up with a friend yesterday who was also supportive:


Me: I just feel like maybe I could have done something more mature...

Him: What could be more mature than setting a firm boundary? That's all you did.

Me: Well, it didn't feel like "setting a boundary." It felt like selecting the least violent option, at best. The one that wouldn't involve police.

Him: See? Even that is a mature decision. Much more mature than if you'd smacked her. This is mature from every angle!



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Well, either you were right or you totally jinxed us. I'm just gonna go with jinx, so thanks a lot. :P


She's full of beans now. But the upside of that is her sleep is getting better. She slept 6 1/2 hours straight last night, and I got that sinking feeling I remember from newborn babies when they do this, where you realize how many hours in a row you just slept and you look in the crib (in this case the covered crate) and make sure they're still alive.


One question (for anybody): We have lots of neighbour kids. They are well-behaved, but little kids. So sometimes loud and a bit rambunctious. We had two over yesterday, and the kids were good, and Carmen seemed to enjoy it, chasing them around. I limited the visit to about 10 minutes. I told them that's as long as her little brain can process new things. Does this seem like an appropriate exposure to kids? Is there anything else I should keep in mind? Obviously, I'm watching them and they're not doing anything to hurt her, just getting her really excited.


I did notice at dinner in her xpen, she was trying to kill her toys (as she always has) but this time she was really jumping and barking at them. I wondered if she was offloading a little excitement. So I thought I'd ask if the idea with kids and young puppies is to get them together asap, or wait, or...(there are different accounts online, and border collies may be different)?


Usually the very young puppies adapt pretty quickly, even in just a few days. But then all the puppy antics begin and you start to see the dog or pup's true personality. And especially with puppies that can mean a lot of devilment. :D

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That sounds good for kid interactions. And kids who are good around puppies are amazing. Im lucky to have a couple of dog savvy nieces. They know to try not to be crazy around a pup and also how to ask for good manners/give treats/play appropriately (and that you might get nipped if you dont).


Im all about short meet and greets early and often with lots of variety as long as Im pretty sure that it can be a positive experience. My current youngster was passed around, played with, etc with friends and family in her first month. At 11 m/o she pretty much adores everyone. Just gage your girls response to people and as long as shes not showing you that shes nervous or overwhelmed then you should be good.


And remember, a little bit of stress isnt a bad thing. We learn and grow with the proper amount of stress when its not overwhelming and we have ample time to process and regroup afterwards

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Well, either you were right or you totally jinxed us. I'm just gonna go with jinx, so thanks a lot. :P


Hey, I'm not taking the rap for any jinxes. I only spoke truth. :lol:


Agree that's a good plan with kids. Short, happy interactions at first and then you can lengthen them. The more positive experiences she has now, definitely the better.

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