We have two rescue labs. Both of them have exceptional relationships with my 9yo. One in particular is a giant PIA but her love for him has tamed him. (somewhat.) Here, their nightly love story.
  1. This is the day we went to visit Paco
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    Back then, he was named Blakey
  2. I could tell he was gonna be a handful
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    Here he is with his big bro, Pele, when they first met
  3. We sent him to some training and were told he was perfect, so he came home to us
  4. He was not perfect
  5. He growled and barked at all men other than my husband, which meant guests were not welcome or possible (or were just terrified); he was destructive all over the house, and tore up the garbage and my kids' lunch boxes daily; he was in many ways a wild animal (literally)
  6. He has scars on his nose and was homeless prior to our rescue: clearly had been abused and his anxiety was through the roof
  7. After six months, I was at my wit's end
    I grew up with labs and know how to train them. Pele was not an easy dog either (also a rescue) but was trainable. Paco was not responding to anything.
  8. I spoke with my vet and said: please, I need Prozac
    For the dog, not me. But at that point, maybe me too:
  9. I realize not everyone approves of medicating an animal, so I do not share this widely. But he could not live in our house in his current state.
  10. Also, my kids - mostly my daughter- loved him so much. As did Pele. Re-homing him was not an option.
    Not all rescues work out. That's the truth. But I wanted to try to make this work because I could not bring myself to re-home an animal I made a commitment to.
  11. The Prozac worked wonders!
  12. He went from a skittish, hyperly-anxious dog with abuse issues to an *almost* normal pooch!
  13. Of course, a lot of love helped.
  14. Now, rather than sleeping on the streets and being abused by awful, horrible assholes, he sleeps here
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  15. And here:
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  16. And here:
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  17. But mostly here:
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  18. Sometimes they both join:
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  19. And when she has sleepovers, he joins that too:
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  20. But he is fine solo here:
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  21. And now I come upstairs and find this nightly, and I think of all the dogs who deserve the love of a little girl, and I'm so glad (most times) that he is ours and he is hers and she is his.
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  22. And that is the story of one dog's rehabilitation.
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  23. The end.
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