I'm determined not to let that happen with Lamar. When I come home in the afternoon, I make it a point to walk right on past the wildly launching Fozzie (much as my heart longs to smooch him) and go right back to Lamar to scratch his ears as he moans and sighs, and stretch out next to him as I bury my face in his neck.
It eats me up inside that the link to posts about Fozzie on the right of your screen is so much larger than the one to posts about Lamar, and I'm determined to fix that too.
If it means you have to read a bunch of posts about piles of dog hair, so be it.
Today, I have a Lamar post that may actually be somewhat useful, and I mean useful for something other than assuaging my guilt.
Last week I took Lamar to see Pam for a TTouch session. I've learned so much from Pam about working with wild dogs like Fozzie and Sandy; I wanted to see what we could do for an anxious, reactive dog like Lamar. More than anything I was hoping to figure out some solutions to what I imagine, in my most tortured guilt-racked moments, is Lamar's own private hell of living with an impulsive muscular young upstart when he just wants to be enjoying a relaxing retirement.
With some gentle pressure on Lamar's sacrum, the tension and stiffness in his hips began to release. He started to yawn, sigh, and pass gas--all signs he was releasing and relaxing!
The main solutions to our household tension--the ongoing growling snapping and snarling every time Fozzie approaches Lamar's "turf" of our bed--were management solutions.
What if we moved the bed somehow so that Fozzie doesn't have to pass by so close to Lamar every time he goes through to the dog door? What if we just institute a rule that Fozzie has to stay in the living room for as long as Lamar wants to be on the bed with us at night?
And a few ideas to help the both of them relax. Try putting an anxiety wrap around both of them at night, along with a calming elastic around their noses and heads, and see if that brings a shift in the level of tension.
The elastic around their faces releases endorphins from that whole rich area around the muzzle. Maybe they'll feel so good they'll forget to be upset at each other!
Work for 5 minutes a day on their mouths, lots of circles around the muzzle and cheeks and mouth to release endorphins and help those tight facial muscles loosen.
And finally, I realized I need to be more consistent about getting Lamar on some relief for his hips. How much of his grumpiness is exacerbated because he is in pain? He is 12 years old, and though at times he prances about like a much younger dog, at other times the stiffness and weakness in his hips is starting to be really noticeable.
I have some glucosamine that I give him, but I know there are scads of products out there and that some of them get really good reviews. What doggie hip and arthritis supplements have you used, with good results?
I think Lamar loved his TTouch session, but he eagerly awaits your advice on his hips.