(Contributed by Lori Whitwam)
For those of you who read my blog from earlier this month, I wanted to let you know how things turned out with our new rescue dog!
I'm happy to report that he came to us the night before Thanksgiving, and everything is working out beautifully! We named him Darwin.
I had a few apprehensive days as I watched to see if he would settle in and get along with our resident dogs. The main potential obstacle was Brody, our 2 1/2 year old Great Pyrenees. Pyrs are by nature more aloof than goldens, and I wondered if their personalities would match, especially since they are so close in age. Darwin barks when he wants to play, and to Brody (from a long line of livestock guardians) that means either a threat or challenge. At first he wasn't sure what to do about it. Darwin, being a golden, is a very sunny and outgoing dog, and I think Brody initially interpreted this as a challenge to his position of authority. It took several days, but Brody finally gave Darwin a chance, and now they play wonderfully. Ozark, my 8 year old Pyr mix, seemed to hold back and wait for Brody to decide how things were going to be. He was pretty nervous, avoiding Darwin's play attempts for fear of starting or getting in the middle of a conflict between the two younger dogs.
Right from the beginning, though, our 14-year-old golden, Sprocket, seemed to recognize "one of his own." The very first night he was playing tug with Darwin (and winning, but he cheats).
Our pack is now 4 dogs strong, and we couldn't be happier! I just spent ten minutes watching the three younger dogs wrestle out in the yard, while old Sprocket napped by the window with me.
If you'd like to see a short clip of the first time Brody and Darwin played, check out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5P1wh34l-hw .