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Progress Report: Gingerbread
Jan. 2006


Chinook Winds Greyhound Rescue

Following better than 36 hours of worrisome pensiveness, Gingerbread has now exhibited significant bonding progress. On Monday, as a result of my concern that Ginger was notably depressed, I took her for a long walk around the neighbourhood despite her quiet reluctance to acknowledge any efforts to ease her. She was exceptionally good on the lead - that honeymoon thing, I expect; and immediately showed signs of brightening up.

A mere 15 minutes into the jaunt, Ginger was looking up at me and behaving like a happy dog. Shortly thereafter and oh-go-figure, Ginger and I came across a Jackrabbit which suddenly chose right down the middle of the street in full view as an escape route. For a split second absolute dread ripped through me with slow motion clarity at the thought of my arm being yanked from its socket by a 40km/h yank, and drug several kilometres away before it could be retrieved for reattachment. (Reattachment - you see, even in the midst of terror there is optimism.) I glanced down at Ginger with my back thighs and buttocks puckered ready to provide resistance, only to see Ginger, staring up at me with 5 inches of pink flapping in the breeze, making no effort to answer the challenge of my already tensed grip. She turned back to the street to watch the Jack Rabbit make its getaway and once it was successful, Ginger continued to happily plod alongside me for the remainder of our outing.

Once home, Ginger decided to become my shadow and follow me from room to room, nuzzling my hand occasionally for a stroke. I suggested to Steve that he take Ginger for a walk, just the two of them, in hopes that she would establish the same type of bond with him and thus eliminate the axe-murderer syndrome from

poor Ginger’s psyche altogether. Indeed, the result was very positive and Ginger is behaving as an exceptionally well adjusted pet (again, I know – honeymoon) who asks out, asks in, hangs out with the people pack, eats contentedly and completely, asks out, asks in, acts as the canine queen of the neighbourhood when taken for a “promenade”, and suitably sniffs Trouble the cat’s derrière when it is in easy reach. She seems to respect Trouble’s position as household Alpha, which we are subtly encouraging. At this point I am sure Ginger imagines the cat to have a serious leak and not be just a wee bit of a battleaxe, but healthy respect is guardedly developing between them.

Ginger has accompanied me on a couple of car rides. During and immediately after the first, she was expectedly rather pensive, meekly retiring to her pen upon our return and trying to look unobtrusive. I don’t imagine she has had many ride experiences that have ended without upheaval lately. On her second, today she got to go to the pet-store and pick out her own ‘china.’ She recognised the front of the house on return and has not shown any indication of stress as after the first.

So far, we have Ginger happily feeding on EVO by Nutrience, Tripe, medications and Chicken Weiner (which the cat now insists on having too . . . thanks very much) Steve or I will be looking into the raw packs this week. I offered her a knuckle today, but she is still more interested in keeping me in sight than settling down to a good chew - that I expect will come as she continues to develop confidence. We eagerly look forward, most likely several months ahead when she possesses that easy sense known only to dogs that are secure in the fact that they have a permanent home.

We were deeply concerned by Ginger’s profound melancholy upon her arrival here. To be removed from such a positive and nurturing environment as yours with lots of canine and human companionship and thrust into the great unknown must have been both frightening and crushing for her. Now, we are all rather grateful she was so well prepared to accept her new and decisive pack.

Many thanks,

David



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