Less than two months ago I shared our pug adoption story. In it, I explained that when they were with us for about 2 months they began to play with toys with us. I said that since then, things had always been the same. I had thought that it took about 2 months for them to completely relax around us and be themselves.
Until yesterday. Yesterday, I was cooking and Ryan was playing with the pugs. Suddenly there was this yelp. Frank has what I assume is some arthritis and/or joint pain in his back legs/hip area. If we pet him too rough in that area, he sometimes yelps. His yelps always sound the same, though. This time, the yelp sounded completely different. I headed for the living room and Ryan answered the question that I hadn’t yet had time to ask “That was Beans!”
It was the first time she had helped around us. They are very attatched to us, almost always within 2 feet of either Ryan or myself. She inevitably gets stepped on at least once or twice a month by accident. She never yelps. She once came into contact with a lab easily four times her size. He sniffed her, very gently at first and then in a split second his entire mouth was around her neck. My heart stopped. I let out some kind of noise as I yanked her up into my arms away from the big dog. She made no noise.
So, while it may seem strange to some, it felt great to her her yelp. It felt great that she finally feels like she can tell us when she is in pain. I hope that she continues to freely express her discomfort when needed.
Did your dogs hold any aspect of their personalities or behaviors back until they had been with you for months? What was it?