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Monday, February 22, 2016

Happy 2nd Adoptaversary!

My Golden Eyed Girl
Happy 2nd Year!

February 2016
One of the things hubby and I pride ourselves in, is evaluating a dogs personality. We know our limits as well as what personalities work for our family and what personalities do not work. (A More Detailed Post To Come in the Future.) When we were looking for a second family dog we chose to take our time and be pretty picky about what we wanted to work with. And Ziva has been perfect for us!

February 2014 - look at how tiny she was!!
Happy Second Gotcha Day to Our Little Mud Princess.

Working with Ziva has been at times a challenge, but always a joy. She's been worth it, and let me tell you why she's been perfect for our family.

February 2014

Ziva Challenges Me To Grow as a Dog Trainer.

Other Dogs
Ziva has struggled with fear reactivity, but we've worked super hard on it!

But the more consistent you are, the better it gets.

With things like fear reactivity the work never ends. She's both our biggest hurdle in introducing new fosters to our family, and their eventual best friend.

Ziva loved Captain Jack!!
Remember Mikey and Eddie? My hubby wasn't home when I brought the boys back from the shelter and I ended up borrowing my dog loving best friend to help me out with introductions - DO NOT TRY INTRODUCING DOGS BY YOURSELF. Both boys were putting off such massive amounts of anxiety it took us a good hour and a half to get Ziva to the point of accepting them on our customary introduction walk. After our walk when we got them in the house and settled; Ziva decided Eddie was her speed and helped us comfort him in his new environment.

Eddie & Ziva
When we first adopted Ziva her severe separation anxiety had me going bonkers trying to find the best cocktail to meet her needs.

What ended up working for us, was lots of exercise in the morning before we left, some soothing classical music or an audio book while we were gone, and something for her to chew on. We even borrowed a video camera to watch her while we were gone to ensure she was sleeping!

It took over a year but did you know that we no longer crate her? It's been over 6 months and she hasn't destroyed a single thing in our house! No barking, howling, or crying either! Yay Ziva!!

"Ahhhh...the humans bed..."
Ziva Is The Perfect Adventure Buddy!

She loves to trail run, swim, get dirty, play ball, and did I mention run? It's her preferred speed in all that she does.  This last year she went skijoring for the first time! She also hikes with mommy, and canicrosses with Dz Dog Dad!

Daddy's little canicrossing mud princess.
Daddy's Little Girl

Favorite Pics From this Last year.

When Dz Dog Dad Is Away Overnight For Work, Ziva Makes For a Perfect Pillow Pet!

Ziva Is The Bestest Little Sister!

No more crates just snuggling with brother.

I've had many people tell us that you can't trust two pibbles in the house loose together. I'm not sorry to say that making blanket statements like that is a complete disservice to the dogs.

You need to know your individual dogs personalities and how they get along with each other. Dante and Ziva for example never have any altercations, they do not resource guard or have special idolized toys (except Ziva's tennis balls - which Dante could care less about). They snuggle all the time, and seem to prefer to be in each other's space as opposed to apart, they share toys, they share treats, they do not steal, and when someone isn't feeling well and emits a growl - it is politely respected.

We're also not stupid parents, high value treats are given under supervision only - frozen raw bones for example are HIGHLY prized, but each dog has done well keeping to their own spaces when we do occasionally hand these out. And when we leave we make sure their are plenty of different chews to occupy their time if they want them.

Any dog can have a disagreement, it's up to you to make sure to limit the chances of that happening and to know your dogs. If your dog's frequently get into spats/disagreements you probably should separate them when you are not home - REGARDLESS OF BREED.

However you can greatly minimize the risk of inter-household issues if you take your time, and pick a dog whose personality best complements your existing family and home dynamics.

Ziva was a rescue pup from California, we highly encourage you to check out your local rescues and animal shelters when considering adding a dog to your family.


We Love You Little Girl!


  1. Happy #2 ZIVA! You sure did rock the boots in the pic above! You are a beauty!

    Keep Calm & Bark On!

    Murphy & Stanley

  2. Happy Gotcha day Ziva! Your family is so lucky to have you!

  3. I'm definitely on team Ziva. And I really enjoyed the video and description of her progress with you.

    Matching your dogs to your family is so important. Maybe you should write a little e-book describing the process you went through and how you decided Ziva was the right addition for your family.

    1. That's an interesting idea. :-) I've definitely been meaning to write a post about it.

  4. Just stumbled across your site and loved this piece about adopting and temperaments of dogs and finding dogs who's personalities match yours! I had rescued a dog I found in a dumpster and took him in, sweetest dog you'll ever meet and got along quite well with our other pup but over the years they grew apart and now can't stand each other! I was wondering if you had ever had a situation where two dogs could not stand being around each other?

    1. Sometimes this can happen with age, some dogs can get grumpy from not feeling well or a medical condition. I've only personally known one person this happened to and it was medically related that sparked the issues between the two dogs.
      I'll have a post soon about picking matching personalities for dogs. :-)
      Thanks for stopping by!!

  5. Great post..... Looking forward to the personality post. . And happy adoptaversary, Ziva

  6. Oh, my goodness. How sweet is that story? And those pictures?! Happy (belated) Gotcha Day, Ziva! You sure found yourself a wonderful family! Also, Emmett and Cooper vehemently agree with your last point about rescues and shelters! :)

  7. (Apologies if I have two comments... the first seemed to disappear after I clicked publish!) Happy belated Gotcha Day, Ziva! What a wonder story and such sweet pictures! And, Emmett and Cooper completely agree: finding pups at shelters and rescues is the way to go! :)

    1. No worries! I moderate comments due to trollers. :-) Thanks for the love!!

  8. I hope she had a great gotcha day! I loved the video. They seemed to take to each other right away and they played so nicely together.

    Delilah is the dog who challenged me to be a better trainer and it's been a long, sometimes rough road, but she's such a good girl and brings so much joy and laughter to us. I agree, rescue is awesome.

  9. Happy Gotcha Day, Ziva! Sorry I'm late as always!
    I appreciate this post so much. Since our Luke is fear reactive, one of my biggest worries with him is bringing any new dogs home. Since both girls are older, we'll be facing that or being a one dog household at some point. Reading about how Ziva has done definitely gives me hope!
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets


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