Monday, November 21, 2011

Fitting In

Every time one of our old dogs passes on, or we add a new dog to the pack, the dynamics change. All of our dogs are now eight years and older -- except for Caillou.
Caillou is the new collie that wandered up in the spring. He's about a little over a year old and can't understand why the other dogs won't play with him.  It's even harder for him to understand why ALL the other dogs still snarl, snap, and bully him around. 
Even Ol' Buddy that is 1/3 the size of Caillou keeps him in line. 
All the dogs get excited when we walk, but Caillou is ecstatic. He runs rings around the old dogs, jumps over their backs and bolts out of the gait like a thoroughbred race horse.
All the old dogs go inside after one lap, but Caillou makes ever step we make. He chases sticks, tennis balls, or pine cones. God help a poor rabbit, chipmunk, or squirrel that crosses our path while we're walking.
Tonight all the old dogs know the routine so they head for the office and stake our the prime real estate around our desks because they know we always write about 8 p.m. Caillou, who is still learning the ropes, waits until we go into the office. By that time, it's too late. 
Tonight as the pup tried to come into the office, Blackie Bear who was lying by Jilda's chair, snarled like he would kill the collie and drag his bones out in the back yard and bury them near where he likes to do his business.
At one point, Bear looked up at me as if to say, "why don't we do the humane thing and put this dumbass creature down."
Caillou is a little slow on the uptake, but I can already see his behavior change. He's learning where he fits in. 
Change can be painful for any family, work group, or dog pack. The key is figuring out where you fit in.


  1. Anonymous10:51 PM

    Yes it is quite a work to put everyone in line.But animals are quite smart ,ones they realize the pack order (as long as you stay on top) everything is gonna be fine;)

  2. In our household, it's the youngest pup that has the most to say! She's always telling everyone off and muscling in to stake her claim. Poor Caillou. One day he'll get his chance to handle the big guns. I do feel sorry for him, now, though. He sounds so precious.

  3. A change in the pack is very difficult whether it's dogs or people. We all have a tough time accepting someone new, or worse, grieving over a lost loved one.


  4. Ahhh yes. It's the figuring that gets me!

  5. Awwww poor Caillou!! Big hugs to him - what a cutie! Hope he does find his place in your wonderful pack! Take care

  6. Fascinating post. And a wonderful comment on human nature.

  7. Anonymous6:52 AM

    And some of us never actually find out where we fit in....sad but true.

  8. I'm very partial to Collie's having had one for 12 years. Even at 12 years old, this dog had energy and never stopped. He ruled the other two dogs we had and he was last in order. He was 85 pounds and thought he was a lap dog. I can't tell you how many bruises I endured with him "sitting" on my lap. So Caillou will keep the older dogs young I think. Or else there will be an uprising!! haha. Great post.

  9. Sounds like Caillou ads zip and zest to the pack. Sometimes THAT is where we fit in.

  10. What a terrific post! I loved reading it. It is so true. The dog pack dynamic is there. Caillou will get it figured out sooner or later. I had a yellow lab that had that same spirited mentality, but he finally got his act together and fit in with the rest.

  11. Love this post. We have two dogs, and I've learned a lot about people by watching and interacting with them.

    You left a comment on my blog for an older post and I approved it. I don't know where it went, because it's not in the comment trail of the post I thought it went to. Thanks for stopping by.

  12. Families dynamics can be so complicated... How fun to have so many dogs though!


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