Today I finally had a dog trainer come for some obedience training. My little pupil, Tetley, did so very well today. Dave (the trainer) helped me to enjoy my dog more. We had so much fun today, guiding her and playing with her. I felt none of the frustration that I had been feeling in the past week or so. I have heard that you don't get the dog you want, you get the dog you need. This is true in my case, I have to say.
When I was a kid, we got a puppy who we named Lady. Lady was a Blue Heeler ... if you know about dogs, you know Blue Heelers have a crazy amount of energy, and they are also a herding dog. Lady intimidated me because she was always nipping at my feet, pushing into me to get me to move, and basically treating me like a sheep. My daughter is with Tetley the same way I was with Lady. Every time the dog comes near her, she yells for me, turns away, then runs away. I am trying to explain that we mustn't allow Tetley to push us around, that we need to shuffle through her, etc. It's not helping, because my daughter's natural instinct is to be herded ~ it's just that it's usually me herding her! I see so much of myself in her :o)
One day, Lady got away from my sister and I, while we were playing in the front yard. When we caught up to her, she was biting a man on his leg. Needless to say, Lady was gone from us after that. This morning, during meditation, I was trying to focus on why Tetley gets me feeling so angry sometimes ... I was directed to thoughts of that childhood memory of Lady getting away, and I realized that I felt truly angry about what Lady did. I forgave her this morning ... for just being a puppy, for not knowing any better, for not listening to me. And I allowed myself to let go of Lady. It is amazing what we hang onto throughout our lives. I always expected to feel guilty about Lady ... but it was anger I was feeling, and now it's gone.
I am so excited when I interact with Tetley now, because I can see the dog she is going to become. She is a sweet, loving, loveable, obedient canine! And she is the dog I need.