Misunderstood Missy!

So yesterday, January 5th I began a new adventure by fostering a dog that is in desperate need of social rehabilitation!
I picked up little madam Mystique Missy while we were in Jacksonville after taking Jared's 1st Birthday smash cake pictures. She's maybe 30-40lb chocolate lab mix (white on her chest, brindling on her muzzle & paws that make her look much older than she is), who I'm told is about 10 months old. Possibly pregnant, but we intend to get her spayed soon. I keep thinking of the Kelly Clarkson song "Miss Independent" as her theme song!

Boy oh boy does she need some work! I've never met such a timid dog, such a stranger to human affection and trust. It's makes me extremely sad to know that a someone taught her this distrust and alienation.

After one day though, it's been about 24 hours as I write this, she's doing SO much better than I ever could have hoped for! Past our initial scare (I got her out of the car and she escaped from her make-shift leash. She didn't run, but it took about 20 minutes and a full bag of pumpkin treats to lure her into the house!) she and I had some one-on-one down time when the boys left the house for a bit. She gave me plenty of wags and preferred when I was laying down on the floor with her so she could approach me and give me a sniff over. Approaching her chin first instead of between the ears makes her happy. As well as slow nonchalant movements, not too fast, not sneaking up on her.

There was much throat rumbling, some barking and a few raised hackles when Missy met Cato & Gracie. Cato couldn't contain his quivering, and Gracie still believes she's twice Cato's size and 5x as ferocious. The baby gate seperated everyone to prevent any bloodshed, heaven forbid. Gracie and Missy were civilized first. Missy is tolerant of Cato and still ruffles and growls at him a bit. Even now there's much butt sniffing & "Who are you, what's your story?"
Missy is very content stealing everyone's bed. All three of them were fed in the kitchen, the girls thought about switching bowls, but changed their minds and everyone ate their own breakfast.
She was nosing everything looking for more, a treat hound for sure.
She hasn't chewed anything, but there's a variety of squeaky toys, ropes, bones and stuffed animals laying around. She licked the food scoop clean, never used her teeth.
She scurries away if you move too close too fast.
Let's see, what else?
       Missy is very curious about my one year old son. She gets a little jittery when he's fussy, but she mostly just watches him. She came up to sniff his feet when he was asleep in my lap. She hasn't taken off running unless he comes really close to her, but I don't allow that yet, as she's stressed and we don't know her that well yet!
       Outside play is fun to watch. I have to watch them through the window or they all wait at the door wanting to come back in. Missy wants to play with the two goofs, but she's not quite sure where she fits in. Gracie the Terrible yips at everyone to make sure they know she's the boss (so no one eats her...), so Missy gets butt hurt and runs away when she gets barked at. They chase each other a bit, but Missy doesn't seem to be ready to act a fool and tear around like the other two, can't say I blame her! Gracie and I played tug of war with some sticks, Missy wanted to play too, but got too rough and Grace ran off.... they'll learn!
       Over all, she's doing wonderfully today. Just one accident in the kitchen this moring, but that was my fault for not letting her outside right before bed like I meant to. She's wagging plenty, allowing lots of petting and she knows to come close enough for a treat after coming back inside!


  1. That's some menagerie you have there!

  2. I am crying happy tears right now!!! (of course the pic of the car ride home is so sad and that is exactly how she was in the shelter)You are one amazing human being and I can never thank you enough for helping her! This baby needed me to save her life and to find you, so that she could know love for once in her life! I look forward to reading more updates and I will see you soon!!! :) oh and thank you for changing her name!!!!!!