Give it Time
I’ve recently adopted a pet. A puppy, to be more specific. He is a very good looking fellow and he is the third dog in my household. Part Plott Hound and part Wimerwiner. Ty is now the younger brother to Trooper and Simon. Ty was in need of a foster home. He was pulled from the shelter by a rescue the same day he was scheduled to be euthanized because they didn’t have enough room for him. My best friend sent me his picture to ask if we would be interested in fostering.
My husband and I had been discussing getting another puppy as a playmate for my other 2 dogs, but mostly Simon, who was only four and a half and bursting with energy. Trooper, my oldest, turned thirteen this past November and is really slowing down. So we agreed to foster Ty, with the idea we would really adopt him into our family.
I was anticipating needing to properly introduce Ty to the two older guys, slowly and letting them get used to each other and the new routine. I’ve always had to properly introduce all of my dogs to other dogs, especially Trooper. So that wasn’t surprising. What was a bit surprising is that Trooper seemed more accepting than Simon. Simon was a little unsure. Well, more than a little. Simon hadn’t been introduced to many other dogs, and I think he wasn’t sure of how to react. But, I really had it set in my mind that we were going to adopt Ty, so it would need to be ok. Plus, the idea of acclimating Simon to another dog seemed unappealing, mostly because I have nervousness about it.
Next thing we knew, we had to bring Ty to the emergency vet! He had blood coming out of both ends of him. Luckily, he was negative for some really serious stuff and ended up with a diagnosis of tapeworm and hookworm, both of which he probably picked up on his journey to us. Plus the stress of being in a new environment and new food (really, eating food at all seemed to be new to Ty, as he was severely underweight when he arrived with us), his stomach and digestion were a mess.
But, we were staying the course that we were adopting Ty. There had been a couple scuffles between the puppies, but I was noticing that Simon was appearing to get more comfortable and playing with Ty. Trooper was a bit of a grumpy man at times, but I was hopeful. There were some really tough days, emotionally, because I couldn’t imagine not adopting Ty at this point. Through some of my tears, I would ask my husband if he thought it was going to work out, and why can’t they just get along all the time? I really, really want them to love each other and be brothers, etc. I kept asking and hoping for them all to get along all of the time and love each other. And I would find myself upset at the times when there was a scuffle and a problem; I’d be worried that this wasn’t going to work out between the puppies, and why was it was taking so long??
I think this situation that I’m currently in can be translated to many everyday situations. How many times have you wanted results now or wonder why this just won’t work into my schedule without a bunch of other issues arising? You’re not the only one! I think for so many of us, giving something time is a difficult concept. There are definitely situations that we know will not happen overnight, like when you plant a garden. We know that when we wake up the next day, we aren’t going to able to pick from our garden we just planted. So, not everything is going to have the same time frame. It seems an unreasonable idea to have unlimited patience. Who has time for that? :)
I think what we need to realize is that things are meant to happen in their own time. Some people would call this divine timing. There is likely to be some sort of lesson in the waiting period. That time we are so eager to pass away at a quick pace. In the situation above with my puppies, I think part of my lesson is the recognition that I need to give certain situations time and that I can’t expect results overnight. I’ve been lucky with my dogs and them getting along and loving each other. But if I really think about it, every time we add a new dog to our family, there has been an adjustment period for the dog that has already been part of our family AND for the dog that is entering our family. This is the first time I have had 3 dogs at the same time and this isn’t the same situation as adding just a second dog. Perhaps that’s part of the lesson as well. While the situation may be similar, it’s not the same and I can’t expect the same results.
Ty has been officially adopted for several weeks now. There are still some instances that get me worried or where I need to be stern about their behavior towards each other. But since I have recognized my impatience with giving them time to adjust to each other, I don’t feel quite the same concern or worriment about them getting along. I know they will have their moments of scuffles or irritation with each other. Hey, what brothers don’t? But now I feel much more relaxed about it. And I know they will love each other and enjoy all their time together. The secret was to give it time.