Monday, May 18, 2015

Teen wolf.

Got some thoughtful responses about my dog, Tralfaz, and his sudden drinking problem, following my blog entry last week. Sadly, we've now entered week 2 of his refusal to drink water out of the bowl, despite trying all the suggestions people have kindly shared.

Took the big dude to the vet after a few days to make sure there was nothing wrong. A hundred and a quarter bucks later, there was nothing wrong. He's healthy as a horse---a thirsty horse.

What we have is a dog at the equivalent of a teenager. Apparently dogs are as subject to all the pain-in-the-ass teenageisms that humans are, even dogs that have had the little operation. So while we've come to think that Tralfaz has had a scare that gave him a phobia of water bowls, we also think that he's become stubborn as hell because he's a teenager.

Tralfaz: The Motion Picture
So now what do we do? You can't reason him through it; he doesn't speak English, you know. (Just a few words, a mere soupcon.) We could help him gradually approach the object of his fear through systematic desensitization, but that stubbornness is a complication. He's big, but not so big that I couldn't force him to face the water dish---which would probably reinforce the terror.

Still, we're trying to tempt him, reward him, and make sure he gets adequate water through other means, but he may have to outgrow this. I welcome any other suggestions. He really is a good chap, teenager or not, friend to man and beast, and I hate to see him suffer.

Moreover, I hate to see me suffer. I'm a good chap too. My wife's a good chappette. We have enough problems without this one. Who doesn't?

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