Our Adventures With Retired Racing Greyhounds, Truly, Maggie and Walker

Monday, January 4, 2010

Common Sense and Flexibility

Again, you do your research so you know exactly what to expect when you bring a retired racer into your home, right?  Well, yeah.
Only, here's the thing -
1.  Who knew Truly would absolutely hate his crate?  He let everyone know of his "crate hatred" by barking - ALL NIGHT LONG.
2.  Who knew he would eat his food so fast that the poor boy would choke on it and cough it up all over the floor? 
3.  Who knew that he would be able to get the top off the garbage can, no matter how well it was secured?
We didn't, that's who.  So what did we do?
1.  Despite the extensive retired racer education to which we had availed ourselves, clearly not all hounds find comfort/familiarity in the crate.  Tim applied common sense and decided that we could avoid him barking ALL NIGHT LONG in his crate by simply not putting him in it.  Barking stopped immediately.
2.  If he's choking on dry food, which is what we understood he had eaten all his life, let's be flexible and put some liquid in it.  Choking stopped immediately.
3.  If he removes the lid of the garbage can (no matter how we "rig" it), let's move the garbage can to a place where he can't get to it.  Gosh, we're brilliant!
Truly had to apply some common sense and he had to be flexible, too.  In those first days, he said:
4.  They clearly don't like it when I pee and poop in the house.
5.  They clearly don't like it when I "snack" on books from the coffee table.
6.  They clearly don't like it when I put my head on the dinner table.
So what did he do?  He said,
4.  I stopped peeing and pooping in the house.  (On my first day here, by the way!) 
5.  I eliminated reading material from my snacking.
6.  I convinced then to apply common sense and buy a taller table and chairs!  Dang it!
So, that's how those early days with Truly went.  A liberal application of patience, common sense and flexibility was all we needed.  He was then, and he remains, a wonderful addition to our family.
Tim, Truly and me at the Concert in the Park.
Sawyer, Truly and me.  Truly never sits down.

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