Pet decisions are adult issues

2013-11-28 00:00

AS I’ve mentioned on occasion, one of the biggest factors affecting human-canine relationships is our emotional state of mind. When puppies, or rehomed pets, move onto a new property, the instinctive need to survive is first and foremost in their minds. The quest for food, water, shelter and safety controls the eventual, overall behaviour.

At 25 kilograms, little Sheba, having previously been allowed inside the house, is kept outside permanently. After the initial whining and crying subsides, our puppy, being in a very strong investigatory phase of her existence, has chewed on items such as cottage-pane window frames, her new kennel, vehicles’ plastic bumpers and wooden garden furniture. After digging up plants, she targets owners and visitors with muddy paws. In addition to incessant barking, washing is pulled from the line and when she does manage to get inside, it is usually coupled with urinating or defecating. Destruction escalates dramatically during storms, due to her fear of thunder. Trips to the vet in a vehicle are a nightmare because of wild behaviour, vomiting or defecating.

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