Rescue dogs sometimes arrive with baggage (some more than others). I think their quirks and issues give them character, make them even more lovable and life more interesting. But some have suggested that Ruby has me well-trained so perhaps I’m not the best judge. Take the quiz below and see how your rescue dog (and you) measure up.
Does Your Rescue Dog Have Issues (Or Do You)?
1. You have one winter coat (which may or may not fit) and your dog has five coats.
True: But my dog has way more than five.
False: Neither of us have coats. We live in a warm weather climate.
2. You feel guilty when going to work, the store or anywhere dogs aren’t allowed.
True: My dog gets depressed when left alone.
False: My dog can’t wait for me to leave. Pretty sure she is throwing wild parties while I’m away.
Extra credit: I have separation anxiety and my dog plays along.
3. Your rescue dog has new dishes, fancy luggage, and sweaters for each day of the week. Your dishes are chipped, your luggage held together with duct tape, and your sweaters faded and furry.
True: I work hard so my dog can have nice things.
False: My dog isn’t into material possessions.
4. You stumble through the door after a grueling day. Your rescue dog greets you, well-rested after a fun day napping on the couch. Although you are on the verge of being HANGRY, you feed your rescue dog first.
True: Because dogs get HANGRY, too.
False: My dog waits patiently while I scarf down some chips.
5. Your dog has her own Christmas stocking, filled with toys she will reject or destroy.
True: Destroying toys is a good confidence booster.
False: We don’t celebrate Christmas, but my dog still has a boat load of toys.
6. You excuse bad behavior (because she has had a hard life) like occasional accidents, ripping up the couch, or knocking over the garbage can and eating a bunch of crap that will soon make her sick.
True: Note analysis below.
Accidents = she’s frightened and thinks she’s been abandoned.
Couch destruction = she’s purging her mind of painful memories when she had no couch.
Garbage can = she’s having a flashback to when she was a stray and dumpsters were her friends.
False: My dog doesn’t do any of these things (wink, wink)
7. Your rescue dog’s diet is human grade, grain-free, organic, all natural, fortified with fairy dust, etc. Your diet consists of chips, salsa, beer and a frozen dinner or two.
True: My dog eats better than I do.
False: My dog likes chips and sometimes gets her head stuck in the bag.
Extra Credit: My dog has a personal chef.
8. Your dog’s gear (supplements, toys, treats, leashes, collars, beds, coats, sweaters, costumes, grooming supplies) are taking over the house.
True: We need to buy a bigger house for all her stuff.
False: My dog is a minimalist and only keeps things she can eat or sleep on.
9. You find your rescue dog sound asleep, taking up most of the bed. Instead of moving her, you curl up in an uncomfortable ball (and wake up the following morning with a backache).
True: My dog has insomnia and I don’t like to wake her.
False: I roll that big lug over like a log.
Extra credit: I quietly creep out of the room and go sleep on the couch.
10. You make every effort to travel with your dog. However, if she must stay behind, you leave hundreds of pages of detailed instructions for your double background checked pet sitter. Leave the lights on (she’s afraid of the dark), fluff her pillows (she has neck issues), leave a radio on (so she stays calm). You also install one of those new video pet cameras. When she ignores your call (because she’s a dog and doesn’t understand two-way cameras), you assume she’s too depressed to move. You immediately call the nearest friend or relative and demand they do a wellness check. Aunt Trudy finds your dog sleeping soundly on the couch, but it’s too late because you are already on your way home. Sigh …
True: Better safe than sorry.
False: I’m not that crazy.
If you answered TRUE to five or more of these questions, you and your dog have some issues. But the fun kind of issues – as in you love and accept each other no matter what.