A sad story for today. A client called to say that his 2 female dogs got into another big fight. This is the 3rd, maybe 4th time in the last year when jealousy or the fight over being the Alpha female has caused one dog to attack the other. It’s never really clear how they start or which dog initiated the fight, but they both end up having major lesions, trips to the vet, stitches, those big plastic collars to wear, and a high price tag for it all. Then, of course, they have to be physically separated and nursed along until they’re well enough to be on their own again. And, just when you think they’ve learned their lesson and are getting along well enough, they do it again. This client has talked to pet psychologists and even a pet psychic. At least one has come out to try and find a way that the dogs can co-exist, but nothing has worked.
The last time it happened, the client decided to give one of the dogs away. That seemed like a good solution – each dog could then have her own space and family to love. He put up posters at vets, pet stores, and other dog friendly places. You would think a pretty, friendly black lab would win lots of hearts, but he got no calls. He hoped maybe things would work themselves out and as time went on, it seemed that maybe the dogs had finally learned to tolerate one another. But last weekend, after a trip to the grocery store, he came home to find the dogs locked onto each other and again, deeply injured. This time, it became clear – if the dogs stayed together, one or both could end up dead. And could he really afford to keep paying unlimited vet bills?
What a dilemma. He is really struggling – he loves both dogs deeply, but things can’t go on. What to do?