Happy Mum!! Terrified Puppy!! Quite a Challenge!!
About a week ago, I was called out to Centrecare in Short Street to pick up a lost terrier mum and her pup. Mum was super friendly and happy to greet whoever showed her any attention but the baby was quite a different story.
Earlier on, the pup had been picked up and reacted by screaming, biting and pooping herself in terror to the shock of everyone.
The mum, who I have called "SUNNY" because of her bright personality, was happy to jump in my car but things were not so easy with the pup. It took three people to finally corner her after about half an hour and, once again when I picked her up, she was screaming hysterically, biting and pooping herself. She is a tiny little girl who wouldn't weigh more than 3 kilos and is possibly 3-4 months old. We have named her Tacita which is a word meaning timid which is probably an understatement.
In the eleven years during which I have been rescuing animals, l have never encountered such a confronting reaction from a baby. One has to wonder what on earth has happened to her to make her so incredibly afraid.
She and her mum have now been with me for a week and the baby is becoming confident enough to get within 30 centimetres of our feet and will take treats from an outstretched hand. However, she is still on guard and the moment you look like patting her she is off like a bullet. We have tried stroking her when she is asleep but at the first touch, she is up and running. Yesterday, I felt that she wants to be patted but just can't bring herself to trust anyone so I quickly picked her up when she wasn't looking. Sadly the result was the same as previously so I think she will need lots of patience and time to get over her trauma. She is quite happy around my menagerie of foster dogs but people are a whole different ball game.
At this stage, we will not be separating her from her mum as she sticks to her like super glue and feels safer when her mum is close by.
We are looking for a foster carer for this little duet and are hoping that someone out there would be up for the challenge of teaching little Tacita to trust people. I do not think it will be a quick fix but it would be very rewarding to help Tacita to enjoy a normal life. Please ring Sue on 0456664255 if you can help.