Posting days: Sunday and Wednesday and, sometimes, maybe, extra ‘news flashes’!
Wednesday November 11th 2015
In my last post I mused about the awfulness of the prospect of driving away and leaving Isis behind.
Since then, there have been many times when I would gladly have driven away and left the little pest behind.
I’m not sure why she has regressed to rage spins, but there are several possibilities.
She is not having a good time. I continue to push her to eat without barking, snarling or leaping up the wall. She is very much better and at least fifty per cent of her mealtimes are now calm and quiet. But the self control which she is having to exert is palpable.
I am also insisting on her walks that we sometimes go in the direction I choose. Only, of course, when I judge that there is nothing wrong and she’s just being a podengo.
But I may be pushing her too far.
Then, of course, there’s the unfortunate descent of darkness by five p.m. which means that we have to have lights on. As we know, poor Isis finds artificial light very disturbing.
And, for days on end, she has been unable to spend time running in the garden. Two hour long park walks are not enough for Isis.
Even though the Co-op has provided me with lots of boxes for her to deconstruct, she is restless and irritable.
On Saturday, I am talking to the new owner of Belle, formally Bluebell, chihuahua and I allow poor Isis to trap her back right foot in a drain grating. She pulls it out instantly, limps for a few steps and then appears fine.
But following this mishap, she becomes obsessed with her feet again, especially the back ones, licking and nibbling and attacking.
On Sunday evening, things come to a head.
I am grooming her. Grooming has become progressively more and more easy. Now she allows me to brush and comb all the bits I can reach when she is lying in a ‘down’ position, and she rarely growls at all. She still keeps her underside out of reach but we can live with that.
While fussing her in the morning I feel two tangles on the insides of her back legs. So before she lies down for grooming, I reach out to snip them off.
Isis loses it. She has the mother of all rage spins and although I try hard to stop her she bites her right back foot and makes it bleed.
This is very demoralising. She’s not self-harmed like this since April and I hoped that she would never do it again.
From Sunday until today, every time she lies down during the evening and throughout the night she growls and goes for her foot over and over again. This doesn’t stop until she falls into a deep sleep in the early hours of the morning.
Grr rr rr rr GRA, Grr rr rr rr GRA, Grr rr rr rr GRA, Grr rr rr rr GRA, GRAAAAHHH! GRAAAAHHH! Spin. Attack.
I attempt to calm her, gently patting her neck or back. Sometimes this works, but not often. Usually I shove a hand or leg in between her and her foot. Frequently I have to hold her until she stops snarling.
This morning she is so exhausted that she doesn’t rouse herself until ten-thirty even though I am up and dressed.
Today, after returning from an hour and a half roaming around the park, she has been running around the garden for over five hours.
It’s dark now and I can just make her out. She’s lying down at last, under the hazel tree. I’ll let her stay out until she comes in for tea.
Then we’ll see what the evening brings.
Isis came from the Aeza cat and dog rescue and adoption centre in Aljezur, Portugal. For information about adopting an animal from the centre, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or www.dogwatchuk.co.uk