Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Fourth of July = Fireworks
Secret survived her first Fourth of July holiday -- Complete with three days of non-stop fireworks in our neighborhood.
I was gone for several hours on Saturday doing a transfer for an Aussie rescue in Minnesota (time to pay back the rescue gods -- after all, apparently NINE people were involved in bringing Secret & family up from Kentucky!). It was about 8:30 or so when I pulled into the garage and immediately heard the fireworks going off in the yard behind ours. Sigh. I'd forgotten how gung-ho they were about the holiday last year.
Surprisingly, Secret was absolutely fine. Luke is the one I always worry about with such things, as he really hates loud noises like thunder, gun shots and fireworks.
To try to build positive association with the sound, I took Secret out for some frisbee time in the back yard. At that time, the neighbors were mostly setting off whistling fireworks and ones that more or less stayed on or near the ground -- Sparkling fountains were a big hit with them. Secret seemed oblivious to all of it and happily chased after her disc, ecstatic to be free of her kennel after several hours.
I decided to let Luke play frisbee for a bit with all the commotion as well. His brain goes into shut-down mode when he sees a disc (or ball), so he was, no surprise, just fine with this plan. We sat in the grass to cool off and "watch the show" for a bit before going inside and everyone was doing remarkably well.
That is, until the neighbors shot up their first boomer into the sky. That's when Luke high-tailed it under the deck and started to dig a (bigger) hole. I think Secret fed off Luke's fear, more or less, and she followed him and cowered under the deck. We went inside at that point, but the damage was done.
Secret was REALLY off for the rest of the night. She immediately went and hid in the bathroom. There was a moment when I thought she wouldn't even eat her dinner (and THAT would be remarkable) -- And while she did end up eating it, she did so in record time and then retreated to the couch to hide without doing her usual ceremonial 10-minute licking of the bowl.
For the next couple of hours she huddled on the couch, half sitting, half laying down, and breathing fairly hard with a terrified look on her face. I pulled her onto my lap once and she got up and left as soon as the next boom went off (the whole neighborhood was lighting stuff off, it seemed). I tried again to get her to stay on my lap a bit later and this time she obliged and seemed happy to stay. I stroked and massaged her in an effort to get her to settle down. Finally, around 10:45, she fell asleep.
Poor girl! Everyone was exhausted on Sunday. I made sure to come home from my family dinner early enough to try to be home in case any more fireworks started off in the neighborhood.
Oddly enough, Secret was absolutely fine throughout everything that went on Sunday & Monday evening. She seemed completely oblivious and unfazed by everything, a total contrast to Saturday night. I was happy about this, mostly because I worry about her developing a fear for thunderstorms the way Luke has.
We didn't get any real training time in this weekend. I attempted to do some jump work yesterday, but it was so hot & gross out that Secret didn't last long before she wanted to go back in the house. This week looks to be a lot more of the same.
We walked to the vet clinic on Saturday morning to get some more syringes for Luke. I took Secret with me because it was time to get a new weight on her -- 11 months is just around the corner! She weighed in at 41.2 lbs and she now stands 21 1/2" tall.