I’ve lost track of time but I think Novalee has been with us for just over…six weeks? Just over five weeks? I’m too lazy to go back and look but we’re definitely closing in on a month and a half.
Her first two weeks or so with us were…rough. She did not like Lucy – attacked her, in fact – and that made Lucy super paranoid to be remotely close to Novalee (understandable). We couldn’t leave the dogs unsupervised; I made Novalee follow me every time I went into the kitchen.
Day by day, though, Novalee showed more interest than anger toward Lucy. She’d come over to the couch Lucy was laying on and sniff her or bop her with her nose. And then just walk away.
Baby steps. Tiny, tiny baby steps.
Eventually they could be floor-level together. They wouldn’t play together and really didn’t pay any attention to each other, which was fine! No attention is a million times better than angry attention.
Novalee got more and more comfortable with her new living situation and after a few weeks made it very clear she wanted to be on the couch with everyone else. Problem is, with her spine she can’t be jumping on and off couches. But she’d start by putting her head and/or front paws on the couch and then look at us, just begging for us to help her up the rest of the way. And we did. And do.
She is a very happy girl on the couch. Novalee is also still very much the dominant dog. She will literally walk over Lucy to sit next to me – she, not Lucy, must be next to her people.
I thank my lucky stars every day that Lucy is so adaptable. I do think she’s starting to accept Novalee and despite being deemed Nova’s inferior (only by Nova!), she’s still largely Lucy. She’s a bit timid around Nova and we quickly learned feeding time must occur in totally separated, gated rooms but other than that, we’re peacefully co-existing.
And man, I forgot how much fun a puppy is. I know Novalee isn’t technically a puppy any more, but she’s not even 14 months and spent a lot of her puppyhood being a mom! Now that’s escaped that horrible life, she can be just a puppy. She goes from zero to 100 back to zero. She rolls around, gallops over to us and is just so happy and playful and wonderfully goofy.
We have several good adoption applications for her; we’re carefully weeding through all of them to find her best possible home. She is even more cute in person than she is in photos and I know there is a lot of interest in her. But despite being a pretty normal puppy at this point, there’s no guarantee the rest of her life will be “normal” and we need to find a home that understands and can deal with those uncertainties.
For now, though, she has us absolutely wrapped around her paw!