I had to go away for a few weeks. Sammy was going to have to stay alone with Daddy.
We wondered how that would work with him having to go out the deck door to the outside. If I was there, he never obeyed Theo to go anywhere.
Thankfully, his routine was pretty much the same for when he had to go. First thing in the morning, then maybe four or five o’clock in the evening, within an hour of eating, and at the end of the day before bed.
Theo told me it didn’t take long for him to learn the new regime. He would open the door and stand aside. Sammy would dart past him very fast. But afterwards, he wouldn’t come back inside after if Theo was standing there. Instead, he would have to leave door open and disappear in order for Sammy to come back in.
Meanwhile, Theo purchased two good books about rescue dogs and how to deal with them. He decided to try out one of the suggestions. It sounded mean, but it worked.
Sammy had been allowing him to go to him in his basket and squat to pet him sometimes. So this time, he gently picked him up, and tied him with his leash to his belt. Now, everywhere Theo went, Sammy was forced to follow.
It only took a few days of this for Sammy to relax and realize the Ogre was not going to eat him. Or hurt him, or scare him. He talked softly to him, encouraging him, petting him.
Around the third or fourth day, he untied him.
Not long after, Theo closed he door to the bedroom so Sammy could not flee there and dive under the bed to hide. Then, he sat on the love-seat in the living room.
Sammy watched him warily from his basket.
Theo patted the seat beside him and lo and behold, after doing laps around the living room, in tighter and tighter circles, he leapt up beside him!
Later, when it was evening, TV time, Sammy came down and hopped right up beside Theo in his recliner!
In Sammy’s world, a dog belongs in his peep’s chair at TV time!
But watch out. If Theo stood up, all bets were off.
Run away! Run away! That guy I was cuddling with is The Ogre!
When Mommy finally came home, she walked into the house and Sammy, who had been contentedly snuggled beside Daddy, came running to greet her.
He looked back at Theo and then to me, as if to say, “Wasn’t me, Mom. Uh-uh. It must have been a different dog. I would never.”
Sure enough, he would not go anywhere near Theo’s lap if I was around. I guess I wasn’t supposed to know his guilty little secret.