On His Own...NOT! August 9, 2012
Many of you know that in April 2012 I lost Acacia, my nearly 14 year old Belgian Sheepdog. It was devastating to watch her wither away in pain and/or fear, ravaged by what I believe were the effects of Anaplasmosis. Apparently it was even harder than I thought it would be, since I haven't written a blog about Bingleman.
Since that time, Bing spent two months enjoying being an “only dog.” I think he really enjoyed it. A few times, particularly in the first two weeks, I saw him ask me the question. It was something like, “Are we it?” or “Where’s Acacia?” but it was fleeting and we just moved on and I kicked another tennis ball for him.
We went to Belgian Sheepdog Nationals a week later, and I asked him, once again, to do Acacia proud. Boy, did he. First place in both agility runs! But I will save agility for another blog. Then I went to a conference, and Kim (one of the great instructors here at Great Companions) got a new foster. Tango was his name, a Pom mix, less than a year old. He was rescued from a shelter; then returned with a broken leg. Charges were pressed upon the owners; he was slated to be euthanized. Then a rescue (Dad’s My Angel) took him. From the rescue owner’s home he went to Kim’s. Kim facebooked me to tell me I have to meet him. Yep, OK. She gets dozens of fosters. I met him, and almost immediately decided he was to live in our home.
Cyan needed a dog she could pet, hold, dress up, cuddle with. Bing was NOT that dog. Acacia had been very tolerant of Cyan, and she needed a replacement. On June 10, Tango came to live with us; he was Cyan’s 4th birthday present. We believe he’s a Papillon, but a poorly bred one; he weighs 13 pounds.
In the first three days, Bing showed tension and stillness on a number of occasions toward Tango. Well, who could blame him? Tango is young, in-your-face, and really annoying! He’s a sweet boy who loves everyone and everything, and Bing really wasn’t sure he enjoyed being jumped on. On the third day, Bing made a scene and grumbled and snarled at Tango, who squealed and expressed his anal glands. Tango then spent the next three days being leery of Bing. I was very worried that this would be a lifetime of management. But they slowly made an agreement to live by.
Bing snarked at Tango on a second occasion while in the van and Tango was hopping around a little too much for Bing’s liking (and for my liking, too, which is why he’s crated in the van now). Again, Tango expressed his anal glands, but really he was not leery of Bing after that.
They have alternately tried to play with each other but either Bing didn’t reciprocate or Tango got worried. In the two months we’ve had Tango, we’ve seen them play about 5 times…it’s very cute to watch and I am hopeful that this will increase in frequency.
Tango has really pushed Bing in a few ways. On our morning walk, Bing loves to have his ball kicked for him to chase. Tango hops around in his face like a fly. He is relentless, and Bing simply turns his head away….it amazes me every time that Bing doesn’t whomp him. Tango even sometimes beats Bing to the ball and carries it off. Nope, Bing doesn’t flinch. Tango competes aggressively for treats and food, and Bing defers. STUNNING!