Monday, August 8, 2011


A few weeks ago, Lucy went a little nuts barking at a neighbor that came walking toward us.  The lady had very long gray hair and tons of tattoos.  As she approached, Lucy barked with a new voice I had never heard her use before.  It was a deep, growly, I'm-not-so-sure-about-you-Lady! bark.  I felt a little embarrassed and thought maybe Lucy just held a prejudice against old hippies.

But then, she used that same voice to bark at my 80-something-year-old, non-hippie-looking neighbor, Louise.  Louise replied back, "Oh, you just don't like me."  And I felt so bad.  I'm not sure why Lucy barked at Louise.

And then this morning, Lucy barked that way at another neighbor lady.  This lady wasn't 80 years old, or heavily tattooed. This neighbor, Lisa, is a rescue dog lady so she did all the right things... She didn't look at Lucy as she barked, but instead kind of ignored her.  She gradually sat down in the grass near Lucy.  And she gave her some kibble.  Within a few minutes, all the barking had stopped and Lucy was laying on her back getting a belly rub.

But not all people are going to be so patient with Lucy.  And I don't want her to be the kind of dog that barks at people!

I've done so much socializing with both her and Ricky.  For months, we went on daily field trips so that they could be around and experience all types of peoples, animals, noises, etc.  And they've done so well, that I have to admit, this past month I've slacked off.  It's just been so hot that other than our walks in the mornings and evenings, we stay inside at home.

I started thinking about it today though, and decided I need to resume those field trips.

So as soon as Lucy and I returned from our walk, we got in the car and headed to our dog-friendly bookstore, Half Priced Books.

I was a little worried that Lucy might act like a lunatic and bark at the customers if anyone approached her.  But fortunately, I was wrong!  She did a great job...
First, she remembered her door manners!
As we walked around the store, several people told her she was pretty and pet her on the head and she was calm and friendly.  I rewarded with with kibbles and her favorite thing of all, belly rubs!

Lucy even got to go to her favorite section of the bookstore...

I still don't know what these barking incidents she's had are all about...Why she carries on like that to certain people and not others.  But I know we can work it out.  I just have to keep getting her around lots of different people and places, I think.

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