So in my head, having a dog meant going on hikes, walks, snuggles, head tilts and kisses. But reality in the first few days was far from it. Rory would walk away if we pet her for more than 5 seconds. She would bark so loud at anything that moved that I thought my eardrums would disintegrate. She scared us so very much when she displayed frustrated aggression, she would nip even as much as if we walked in a different direction than she wanted. It took us a while to understand she was as scared as we were.

One year later, here are a few things we’ve learned from her:

1. Pause and appreciate the little things. Rain or shine, Always – and that is ALWAYS – stop and smell the flowers or just enjoy the beauty around (even if your pawrents are freezing, take your time and enjoy the snow)

2. Never let your curiosity wane. Anybody who has met Rory can attest to her curiosity levels🤣 She will sniff every corner of your house before she settles.

3. Eat in moderation, or at least let whatever you’re eating be worthwhile. For someone who is highly food motivated, Rory rejects even very high value treats if she has just had her meal or if she feels that what we’re asking of her is too much at that point in time.

4. Its okay to take time-outs and know your boundaries and establish them when needed, even with people you love or who love you. She chooses to walk away (with grace and poise that I can only dream of) if she needs some time for herself and gets back into action once she is ready.

5. Don’t hesitate to ask for some attention or remind people to be loving . She is totally fuss-free through the day while we’re working, but promptly around 5.30 PM she is ready with her toys or ball requesting that we play with her. If we choose to ignore her, the request gets more insistent by the minute. P.S. Heart melts into a mushy puddle when she sits and thrusts her paw asking that we pet her when she needs some extra ❤️

From the initial days’ 5 minute nightmarish walks – because Rory was legit under the impression that she could fly (walking her on a leash was like being dragged by a horse) – to today’s enjoyable 5 mile hikes, we’ve come a long way. She has learned a lot (including the fact that she can trust us) and we’re continuing to learn with her.

I was very disheartened initially as I did not know what we were doing wrong, and a story like this that I read here really helped me. So I just wanted to reiterate to anyone that needed to hear this: hang in there, it’ll all be worth it in the end.

Thank you Humane Society of Huron Valley for this goofball.

Marley now Rory