Why I wont "just put my dog to sleep!"
Why I wont "Just put my dog to sleep!"
I have a dog who is 33 lbs. His name is Rydge.. or Rydgerd for long.
He is the living worst! Besides all of his annoying qualities; barks randomly.. chews my craft supplies, always wants to be let out side at the worst moments ect ect. He has this really, really dark side to him. Rydge can be very aggressive. I don't like to say he IS aggressive because, he isn't.
In certain situations he can, and chooses to be. Because of this I have had to literally grow my whole knowledge base on animals, I have watched, read, studied, talked with trainers, and tested out MANY correction type training techniques. My sweet husband and I have prayed over, stressed about, and gotten really frustrated with this dog.
I have been asked by several people, close friends, family, and total strangers the same kinds of questions, "why don't you just send him to a farm- or put him down" or "why don't you just get a new dog?" In their defense they are seeing me being completely overwhelmed and frustrated with him. They are simply trying to offer a solution. What they don't realize is, how much it hurts my heart that they don't support me in working with him.
Rydge has bitten me, he has attacked more dogs than I can count (NEVER killed or injured thank heavens he's on the smaller side) He has genuinely scared me.
He can be extremely aggressive. But I know him. I know he IS NOT aggressive.
He is a very scared, and a very high energy dog. He goes into his red zone when stimulated a certain way in the blink of an eye but, I know these ways.. I have MASTERED these situations. He is functions like a normal dog. The burden I carry is that I (and my husband) have to watch him, seek out problems before they happen and prevent them. Its a huge burden, especially when all of your life you just wanted a sweet dog you could take everywhere and everyone loved him and life was easy..
When I first saw Rydge he was 2 days old. He was in the back seat of a van owned by two young girls running some sketchy sketch situation. I was naive, I wanted a puppy I picked Rydge. As I drove home with him on my lap his eyes still sealed shut, I made a commitment to him. I strongly believe ANY ONE who gets a dog should. I committed that he was mine, I was with him for the long haul. I would get up every 3 hours and bottle feed him, teach him to pee outside, take him for runs even during the summer in AZ, clean his eye goobers, when he gets old I'd let him live out his days in the comfort of my home. He is my sweet boy and I am his girl.
The other night I had a huge migraine, I found comfort in the dark at the top of the stairs leaning my head down so more blood flow could get to my head. I laid there for a long time. Not once did this little furry boy leave my side. He was very concerned for me, he rested his cold nose on my cheek trying to understand this new energy I was giving off. He gave me peace and patience as best he could. When I would get up he would follow close by. He waited on me for hours until we went to bed. (My husband was in the kitchen making dinner, my dog passed up food scraps guys!)
We live in a world today.. (I know that just got deep stay with me ;)
where is seems like no one has patience for anything. We are all running around with this idea that if something is broken, you simply discard it and get a new one. I believe this enhances the pressure we put on ourselves to be perfect, to have our lives "seem" perfect. Not only does it affect how we come off to other but it also plays a part in the choices we make. It is now ok to give up.. a lot! To throw old things away. (the lost art of fixing things is.. lost, a tangent I could go on FOREVER about.. but I wont.)
I KNOW I am not alone when it comes to loving a troubled soul. He is broken, he needs help. If you can't help/fix them, a child, a animal, plants even! Don't just give up on them! find someone who can, or learn how to.
Thats what I am doing, I am learning. It has been 3 years and It's so much work.
Rydge is so awful I mean it! He annoys me so much sometimes. But I love him. He is not my dream dog but, he is what I always needed. I just didn't know. He is so in tune to me and so loyal.
He shows me he is grateful for my efforts as best he can, and moments like this validate me in choosing not to quit. He is preparing me for something great I can just feel it.