Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Also I think the "abuse" card becomes like an excuse. I could say that Coke was "abused" because he has never liked people reaching over his head, and to this day will duck if you try to pet his head, but if people ask me if he was abused I just say I don't know, he doesn't like having his head touched like that. I don't want his past to limit his future. I do know he wasn't receiving the best of care but I can't say it was abuse or neglect without knowing the motivations (or lack thereof) of the previous owner, which I do not know. Instead I just say that the previous owners couldn't keep him, but we gave him a fresh start. He's done CGC (twice), agility classes, gone herding twice, tried dock diving (OK so he won't jump but he likes to be plopped in the pool and swim around!), goes in parades. On Friday he's wearing his Santa outfit and visiting a second grade classroom. Now I could say "oh I think he was abused" and let him get away with all his bad habits and coddle him at home but I have expectations for dogs that live in my house and I see it more as respect to expect the same from a dog with a muddy past. I *know* he can be an awesome dog despite his past, and he is.