Clover… and the blood draw

Clover did A+++++ at the vet today (round 2, the makeup appt). She allowed lots of touching, stethoscopes, and a BLOOD DRAW without an issue. The vet was going to let the blood draw slide if we needed to but they decided to try and Clover just ate her Vienna sausages the whole time. No growling or freezing throughout. Some pauses and side eye to see what they were doing but she did so awesome. The vet and tech were so impressed and pleased. She ended on a very positive note wagging and waiting for more snacks. And she sat really pretty on the scale. Such a star student.

Clover… and a new friend?

Clover had day care today and they said she’s been doing great lately. No growling. And one person said she even played the other day. Sounds like her confidence and outlook is staying with her through day care! Yay

Clover… and the “gift”

Clover did OMG amazing with guests over. Like, I think my friends were thinking I was being dramatic about Clover and her social anxieties. We had a couple curve balls and she was a total pro. Clover handled new people coming in the door great from her crate. My sister and friend also came with my niece (15, who Clover knows) and my friends 5 yr old. So it was more people and commotion upon entry than I planned but Clover didn’t bark or growl. She was laying in her crate and pretty calmly watching.  I left her in there until she seemed calm and everyone had settled. I had the kids take the 5 yr old out of the room and asked them to keep her distracted (well, that was the plan) before I brought Clover out, with the goal of having  just my sister and my one friend (who Clover has never met) in the main room. When ready I brought Clover out and did OSR in the living room with her (with my friend and sis over in the kitchen). We did that for a bit and Clover did awesome. No growling or barking. She definitely noticed my sister and seemed to want to say hi but we just did our thing in the living room for about 25 min. She was laying down and got blinky eyes and seemed very comfortable. At one point the 5 yr old ran into the room to bring her mom a flower and Clover didn’t startle or bark. She sat up and watched until Ellie (the 5 yr old) left and we went back to OSR. Then Ellie ran back in suddenly and ran up to me to give me a flower so she and Clover were very close. Clover again didn’t startle. Clover was going to sniff at her so I just said “stop” (because I wasn’t sure if she would tip into higher gear) and Ellie handed me the flower and ran off. And Clover and I went back to OSR. I was really surprised at how well she handled that unexpected situation with an unpredictable kid. She seemed more curious than nervous. A little more arousal but not orange. No freezing or staring. Then it was time to go back to the bedroom so I said let’s go and we started going that way. Clover was really trying to get to my sis and friend.  Since she was doing so great I made a game time decision to let her say hi. I walked my friend thru how to give her a piece of food for eye contact and said go say hi and Clover right away sat down in front of her and started taking food from her. She was sniffing my friends legs and gave her a couple licks. Nothing frantic. Then we ended on that good note and went back to the room. Later Brian needed to take her out for a walk and the only way out was to walk past the room full of people. My two other friends who Clover hadn’t met had arrived so there were maybe 6 of us in the room and she walked through no problem (both coming and going). She was definitely seeming like she wanted to go interact but I wanted her to have a positive night so with the full group we didn’t risk it, we just said “let’s go” and off she went. A huge success!! I was anticipating some barks so was surprised that she just sailed through so well.

It was great to see her have confidence in those moments when she’s been so anxious in the past. I was proud of both of us for sure but Clover seemed to be really happy with herself and that was good to see. Yay!

Clover… and the dog

Clover had a GREAT reaction to a dog today. We were on our usual nature walk and going back to the car where it’s easier to see dogs walking on the street (not close, but usually triggers a big reaction). There are also lots of people walking since the trail is right next to a middle school.  And the trash truck had arrived so it was a bit loud. Before we saw any dogs I noticed her go into hyper vigilance mode looking for dogs walking so we just stopped walking and did the OSR routine. Didn’t take long before she saw a dog and started to lunge forward growling but I just stayed put and when she felt the tension in the leash (not from me yanking, just from her own move forward) she stopped and looked at me so I said GG and gave her piece of food. From there, she was definitely looking for the dog and trying to watch it but she wasn’t lunging or growling. In fact she sat down and was settling herself and checking back w me and I would say GG and give her food. She was able to watch the dog walk by without the usual reaction, which is a first. So we did a big celebration about that. Today was the first time I’ve seen her check in with me like that with dogs and settle herself back down without going into her usual full reaction mode. Yay!!