Life with Jasmine, Juliet and Buttercup, Our Rescued Dachshunds

Random notes on our experience with THREE rescued miniature dachshunds

Will She Ever Get Over Her Fear?

on April 2, 2008

Jasmine is still having fear issues with my husband (and men in general).  He feeds her breakfast and dinner, he takes her out every morning, he gives her treats (he’s the Treat Man), and he’d pet her forever if she’d let him.  He takes her for walks.  He does nothing to scare her except exist.

It’s so sad it’s sometimes funny.  Every night when we get ready for bed, she sits by my closet door and waits.  After we both are in bed, she runs over to his side of the bed, checks to make sure he’s there and not lurking in some shadowy doorway waiting to pounce on her, and then (and only then) she runs back to my side and hops into her little bed.  If he makes noise, she sits up to determine if there’s a threat.  She then finally settles down and goes to sleep.

We have been trying different ways to get her acclimated to my husband, but thus far, she’s still terribly skittish around him and will only approach him if I’m sitting right next to him or if he has a treat that’s too good to pass up (frozen yogurt, Simon & Huey’s soft training treats).  If he has a treat, she creeps up to him, then runs away, making a “lap” around the coffee table before approaching again.  Eventually, the lure of the treat gets to be too great, and she approaches gingerly, stretching her wiener-dog self oh so far to take the treat.  If it’s fro-yo, she’ll lap some up, do a lap, stretch again and repeat her ritual.  If it’s the Simon & Huey’s, she’ll snap up the tidbit and do a lap.  If I’m sitting next to him, she’ll sit as far from him as possible while still being within my reach.  She sometimes allows him to pet her, but she never climbs on him and she often runs away if he moves too quickly.

I’m so glad that my husband is a patient man.  It would have broken my heart to have this little dog be so afraid of me.


One response to “Will She Ever Get Over Her Fear?

  1. Lindy says:

    Watching Oprah’s episode on Puppy Mills made me think about Jasmine and her two “sisters” from the puppy mill, Holly & Cappucino. I’m so glad she is no longer living in a chicken wire pen and that she is getting so much love. I hear from Holly’s adopters and she is too is loved and adored. (I’m sure Cappy is too but I don’t get updates on her.)
    Thank you so much for being willing to adopt a dog with issues!!

    As to your husband & Jasmine – stop babying her! Have him offer treats as if she trusted him. If she doesn’t come, the treat goes away. Always act as if she already trusts him – it’s surprising how this works. Attach the leash with no fuss, walk her while ignoring her, etc. I used a matter of fact approach on her when she was much less socialized and it worked wonders. And of course there is always the “adopt a confident second dog” method of making her more friendly. (smile)
    And I’m dying to read about her meeting her boys. You have to arrange that and then take lots of pictures!

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