Struggling With Play Time

Animal Freak

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Yes, I'm a bit overwhelmed at the moment and not spending as much time taking care of the animals as I'd like. Osiris has taken to chasing his tail almost obsessively. We did go back to the dog park today. Bingo was there and he also met a new dog, a six month old pup adopted from the shelter. This was the first dog Si has shown interest in even with Bingo there. He was still obsessed with her, of course, but I was surprised to see him interact with the puppy at all. They had fun running around. Osiris face planted a few times trying to keep up with Bingo.

Pretty sure he does, indeed, have Covid. I've only gotten bits and pieces of the story though. Apparently there's two of us at the shelter not vaccinated. All other staff as well as the main volunteers are. I think being busy, in some ways, does help, but this is becoming a bit too much. It can help me avoid some stress, but too busy causes it's own stress.

Not my dogs. I hate pulling. Drives me crazy. Yes, doing pretty well.

Yes, sometimes I have to remind myself to not rush through things too much. I have a reason to be cautious, so I can take my time. But I don't want to take too long because I know I'm going to be slow anyway and we haven't had enough people to do all the work. I think the only thing that still makes me a bit nervous is walking into an actual room with a dog. The kennels aren't so scary because the dogs can come up and sniff me before I open the door. But Ozzy is kept in an actual room that was used for meet-and-greets and we have a few others kept in similar situations.

Yeah, they've had dogs act like that, but this one just feels different. It's that look in his eyes. Most of the others have had the act down, but not that look. And the staff have never been particularly cautious about those dogs like they are with him. No, he's not very big. He looks like a pit bull, but miniature. Probably in the 30-40lb range and just because he's so muscular. He nibbled my fingers in the play yard. Gently, of course.
 

calicosrspecial

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:( Well, just try to slow down, think things through and prioritize as best you can. Once you start making progress you hopefully feel better. The animals will be fine until you get more caught up. They are more resilient than you may think. Awwwww, poor Osiris. :( He wants you. :/ Awwwwww, he has a new friend!!! Wow. Sounds like he really enjoyed that visit!!

Oh my. PLEASE be safe. Stay away from the unvaccinated. This delta variant is really nasty. :( Yes, it helps in one way but the busy can cause stress. Ughhhhhhhhh. Hang in there. I know you can handle it just do your best.

:) You do do a great job with your dogs. Yes, I hate pulling as well. And for me it is very dangerous. :/ I am glad it is doing well.

We all do!!! That is normal. Yes but it sounds like you are thinking it through, handling it well. Yes, agreed on the kennels vs rooms. :/

Interesting. But the look only outside of the play yard? I had a mini pin/shar pei mix rescue that was small but the meanest dog I have ever seen. The dog was so abused it was pitiful and had such trust issues. Eventually she got better but I always had to be a bit careful. :( Awwwwwww, he sounds sweet outside. I wonder what his story is. Sounds like he wants to love and be good and be loved BUT maybe there is something going on. I have seen dogs go on without notice. It is hard. :( Could be chemical or could be a reflex to a bad past. :/ Be safe.

Hang in there. Stay safe (Covid and animal) and just focus, prioritize and try to make some progress and try not to get too overwhelmed. If you keep your head you will be more productive and make more progress. Easier said than done though I know. BUT I KNOW you can do it!!!
 

Animal Freak

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I'm going to be going down to three days starting in August. Most of the animals are doing fine, but Osiris is definitely affected. He's pretty chill for the most part, but has been causing trouble lately. He's bugging the other animals, getting antsy, and has started chewing on my mom's shoes again which he hasn't done in a long time. Yet he's difficult to get to do anything for more than a few minutes.

Yeah, I haven't worked with him in a while and it doesn't seem like anyone else has gotten it. Tomorrow is his first day back I think.

Well, I try to. I don't think that pulling is good for anyone, including the dogs.

The dog has a much softer look when he's outside in the play yard. Haven't done much with him personally, but looks much less frightening outside. It's hard to forget the way he looks/acts in the kennel though. We almost had a fight between a couple of dogs during playgroups today. Both dogs have gotten along with nearly every other dog they met, but not each other for some reason. A lot of these dogs are unfortunately affected by their stay in the shelter.

Will do.
 

calicosrspecial

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That is good. 3 days is fine. Awwwww, poor Osiris. :/ I would have thought he would be ok but he is so attached. Poor guy. :/ Yes, he is at that age as well. So less attention/play etc can lead to stuff like that. :/

Whew. Good. Just please be safe. I don't want anything to happen to you. This delta is tough for younger people it seems.

Yes, agreed. If you try you can improve it at the least.

Interesting. He sounds like a good dog but not in the kennel. :/ Ughhhhh, yep. THAT can happen. At least it was "almost" and not "had". Well, there are some dogs that just don't like another dog for some reason. I actually had two like that (in my home). They tolerated each other BUT they were like dynamite. If it started it was bad. My big one actually bit the other one in the head but luckily didn't go too deep. :/ Yes, some do have a hard time with the shelter. It is hard. The good news is dogs are fairly easy to adopt out. Just have to find the right person. :/

Hang in there. It is hard to see but the good is really worth it. Rescue work is hard emotionally but just know that if you do your best you will make a difference and do good.
 

Animal Freak

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I don't really think it's an attachment thing as much as just pent up energy. He does it whether I'm here or not. We went back to the dog park today, but no Bingo. There were two dogs when we first got there, but I took Si into a different area and they left shortly after. So we hung out, played a little, and then left. He's been sleeping since.

Yes, of course. I certainly don't want to get sick, vaccinated or not.

From what everyone has told me, he's a bit unpredictable which is a problem. He can be fine one moment and not the next. He bit a lady when she left her leash in his kennel and went back for it. The clip made a sound and set him off. It's hard seeing a dog that acts so sweet and innocent, knowing he has another side of him that will probably keep him from ever getting adopted. No one trusts him, even those he likes. The dog that almost got in a fight is very sweet. I've actually come to really like him. He did fine with all the dogs prior to his neutering, but he was altered and didn't get to go in playgroups for a couple of weeks after. Now he apparently doesn't care for male dogs.

Oh, an Ozzie, the dog that bit me, was euthanized. He apparently went after someone else (the guy who kicked him off of me, actually) though the guy was able to get out of the way. So it was decided he'd be put down that day.
 

calicosrspecial

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Yes, puppy energy. :/ Sounds like you had a good park visit. That is good even though Bingo wasn't there.

AGREED!!! It is a really weird virus. Does terrible things "behind the scenes" for too many people. Arghhhhhhhhhh

:/ We never know what trauma he went through. Ughhhhhhh, it is sad. In the right person's home I think he would do fine I have taken in some really tough dogs and it can work but it has to be the right person. :/ Ahhhh, yes, that can happen. Poor thing. I suspect he will get over it and be ok in time.

Oh, I thought you were talking about the dog that bite you in the previous paragraph? :( Awwwwwwww, that breaks my heart. :( They tried to save him. :/ They did their best, at least they gave him a chance. We can't save them all sadly no matter how hard we want to and try. :( It is hard but I am sure they did what they thought was best. It is so hard for them, it is not an easy decision. Ughhhhhhhhhhhh. It is a tough. Ughhhhhhh.................................. RIP Ozzie. It is too bad people (not the rescue but the previous "family") treat these dogs so poorly to cause them to be so defensive, skittish, aggressive, etc.

How are you doing? I am guessing there are a lot of emotions going on. Hang in there, it is tough but the positives do outweigh the negatives.
 
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Animal Freak

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I still struggle to get him to focus on anything for more than a couple of minutes though. It gets difficult because I can't wear him out. He acts like it's a 100 degrees outside even if it's in the seventies, so he gets hot then comes home, cools off, and has energy while I'm trying to do schoolwork. He does settle down, but he's requiring some extra focus to make sure he's not up to anything. And he's also become obsessed with lights and shadows. He pretty much won't settle in the evenings because a shadow will move and he'll be trying to chase it down.

It is very weird. I don't know why anyone wants to take their chances with it.

I don't really think he'll be getting adopted, honestly. I just saw yesterday he's been put under a 10 day bite quarantine. So he's bitten at least twice though I don't know the severity of it. And he doesn't seem to have specific triggers. Just sometimes he's okay with people and sometimes he's not. To be honest, as hard as it is, I'm not sure why they're keeping him. As far as I'm aware, Ozzie only bit once and attempted a second time, but he was euthanized. He seemed more "fixable" to me than this dog seems. If no one in the shelter can trust a dog, then how can they trust the dog with someone? So he'll live in the shelter in a kennel with minimal attention.

No, Stewart is the dog who acts crazy and has bitten. Caleb is the dog who almost started a fight, but is very sweet. And Ozzie is the one who bit me. Ozzie was a very sweet dog. To be honest, Caleb acts a bit like him as far as his methods of getting attention. He did get a bit cranky with a dog today, a female this time, and started a fight though it was quickly ended. Seems to me he just gets into these moods. He did fine for the rest of the playgroup even with the female he tried to fight (and, to be fair, she'd been in his face a lot trying to get through the gate).

I do feel bad about Ozzie being euthanized. It's a lot of mixed emotions because I'm not sure I could have ever trusted him again and I do understand why they euthanized him, but gosh he'd just been so sweet. He could've been a really good dog. They scheduled to euthanize another dog today. His name was Luck though he wasn't very lucky. He was adopted out a little while ago. I went up and met him and took pictures when he was there previously. Kind of a timid dog, subdued, but by no means aggressive and actually quite friendly once he warmed up. Gets a little weird with dogs in playgroups some times, but doesn't try to start fights. Unfortunately, he got out of his adopter's home and apparently attacked someone. I don't know the full story, but he had to be pulled off. He's been in the shelter for a few weeks and I got the email yesterday that they were going to euthanize him. Very sad.

I always knew this job was going to be hard and depressing, but I've seen more of the 'dark side' than I expected to see in my first month. Three dog bites, two dogs euthanized, a lady surrendered her 8-year-old dog because she has a humping problem (she hasn't been that bad at the shelter and is easily corrected, also did go home today), two dogs who were adopted out together and brought back the next day (two young dogs with a lot of energy; not sure what anyone was thinking adopting them out together)...
 

calicosrspecial

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:/ Yep, puppy stuff. Hang in there, I know it is frustrating at times.

Agreed but people do. :( And the more they do the more people who do the right thing have to be careful. :/

:( It is so tough. There must be something they see. Hopefully. Ughhhhh, it is so hard. You are really getting the opportunity to learn a lot. Both with dogs and your emotions.

Ahhhhhhhhh, I understand now. Well, it kinda makes sense he got cranky but it sounds like he did well after that. Doesn't sound too bad.

Well, it is not your fault so you really shouldn't feel badly. I know. If things were perfect and controllable then better outcomes could happen. BUT life is not like that. It is sad. It breaks my heart to have to euthanize any animal unless for humane grounds. But there are limits to resources, etc. Maybe two dogs will be adopted out to compensate for the loss. It is hard. But it is part of life and doing this. We have to see the big picture and the net positives knowing there are a lot of negatives. BUT if the positives outweigh the negatives then it is better. Ughhhhhhh. Well, life is full of ifs and shoulds and couldas, etc. It is sad. :( Ughhhhhhhhhh

Yes. It is tough. We learn, we learn to do our best, handle our emotions, etc. It is a complex "calling" BUT the rewards are really great. The key is to find that balance. Dealing with the animals is the easy part, handling the way we process and deal with it is tougher BUT I do think you are strong and smart and open and talking definitely helps.

Hang in there.
 

Animal Freak

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I thought he'd be getting better as I have been doing more with him, but he just seems to be getting worse with the pacing, bugging the other animals, chasing lights/shadows, chewing himself...

Unfortunately so. I heard them talking about possible incentives to get the last two people to get vaccinated at the shelter the other day. Hopefully they figure something out.

He seems like a sweet dog when he wants to be, but I just don't see what they can do with him. The longer he's in the shelter, the worse he's going to get. They already can't adopt him out to anyone who isn't experienced with that type of dog and those people don't come along very often. It would be different if there was even one person he trusted and was safe with, but there isn't. Even the people he's friendly with don't trust him in the slightest. It does make you think, that's for sure.

Yes, it's understandable, just a bit drastic. I don't mind dogs communicating. Growling, even air snapping. But it escalated to a fight a bit too quickly. Makes it harder to adopt him too because they have to be honest with people. He has shown some aggression towards dogs and they're saying he gets protective over people. I didn't know that and had been petting on him and two other dogs at the same time and he was fine. So they're probably not going to trust him with children even though he's otherwise a very sweet, gentle dog.

It's still sad. I hate the fact that I have any involvement in a dog needing to be euthanized even if it wasn't my fault. The fact that he was so sweet just makes it that much worse. Him attacking me is sort of a blur in my memory. I don't really remember much at all, not even the pain. So when I think of him, I still see that dog I met before that wrapped his paws around my waist and looked at me with soft brown eyes. Sometimes it's hard to believe that that's the same dog that left these scars on my wrist. And now Luck... He was the opposite. He did fine in the shelter, but couldn't handle being in a home. Never did show any signs of aggression while in the shelter. Just a soft, timid boy.

It is difficult. It's made me think a lot. And thank you for letting me talk about these things. It's all been on my mind a lot lately, but I don't feel I can tell my mom everything because she would not be happy to know we've had two more dogs with bite histories (and that I have interacted with one of them) or that we've had dogs start fights twice.
 

calicosrspecial

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:/ I wonder if he is really missing you. :(

:/ Amazing that the reduced risk of being really sick, hospitalized and death isn't incentive enough. :( Usually people think of themselves above everything else. I can understand the fear of some people for a lot of reasons but the alternative is a lot worse for the vast majority of people. :/

:( Yes, that is the situation and the difficult decisions. It is hard to find and do what is best. It is not easy sadly. :/

Yes. I have had dogs like that. They are not for everyone. And it is stressful. It is good they are honest, agreed, they have to be. Maybe they can find the right home for him. Fingers crossed.

:( I know. But it is good you are facing those emotions and thinking about them. We may not like what happened but it happened and we have to accept. And if there is anything to learn from try to learn from it. The key is to not be too hard on yourself or anyone including the animals. And just keep moving forward the best we can to make positive differences going forward. It is very hard emotionally BUT the rewards are good. Seeing everything is really important. The good and the bad and hopefully it nets to the positive side.

It is difficult. I have cried too many times over all these years. But I find being honest with our emotions is really important to continue to try to do good and be good to ourselves. Oh my, you are so welcome. You can always talk to me about this stuff. It is important to talk about it, deal with it and try to come to peace with everything. Holding things inside is not a good thing. Well, just make sure you are safe. If you think you are but your mom would not feel the same then I understand but if you have questions about your safety then you should think about going through it with your mom to find the best decision. I will say, I was very proud of her for handling the bite incident so well. She only wants what is best for you so I know she is trying. I know it is hard to talk about some things but trust her and learning how to fully communicate is invaluable. Being honest with our emotions with ourselves and with others tends to work out well. I understand your concern but she is that way because she loves you. Sometimes when we love so much we can't think as clearly. :( And of course, I am always here for you. :)

Hang in there. I know it is tough but I know you will always make the best decision. :)
 

Animal Freak

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He can't miss me when I'm here. He's just antsy.

It is sad, but that's just how it is. People tend to have the belief that such bad things can't happen to them until it happens. I do understand those who are genuinely afraid of getting the vaccine, but how people aren't afraid of Covid I don't know.

No, not easy for sure. It'll be interesting to see what they do after his 10 bite quarantine is up. It doesn't seem like a great life for him, cooped up in a kennel, unable to trust anyone.

I hope so. I'm sure they will eventually. I'd take Caleb myself if I had the space, the time, and didn't worry about my smaller animals. I'm a bit paranoid with them, especially Stella, because she's so small but she wouldn't be afraid to start a fight. He's such a sweet dog though. Mostly just wants human attention even with there are other dogs around though he will play with them.

I knew, coming into this job, that the shelter euthanizes animals for behavioral issues. I never liked it, but I understood it. However, I never expected to see so many so soon. I didn't expect to see any for a long while. Ozzie did have a lot going against him. He'd already been adopted once and had gotten into a fight with another dog (owner's fault, they were told not to introduce him to any new people or dogs at first, instead they threw a party the first day). He had issues, he was black, and he was a pit. Luck though... He was shepherd-y type. Cute, sweet, just a bit shy. I'd like to know what exactly happened that led to him attacking someone.

Indeed. Blood, sweat, and tears go into this job. Literally. I don't think I'm in any unnecessary danger at the time, but it is a job that comes with risks. She handled the bite incident surprisingly well, but I think that's her limit. If anything else happens, she'd probably hold me down to keep me from going back. She would definitely worry about me being around dogs who have bitten and the problem is, I can't guarantee nothing will happen. I can't tell her I definitely won't get bitten. So she'd worry which would make me worry and then we'd both be unnecessarily stressed and there's no fix other than me leaving the job. I understand why she worries. Her worries are valid, but that's kind of the problem. They are very real concerns.
 

calicosrspecial

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Well, miss the interaction. Some dogs are really bonded and he does seem to be really bonded to you.

:/ I hear you. :/ Sometimes a person has to take a risk to prevent a bigger risk. :/ No one wants surgery but often without surgery the other result is worse. It is hard, I sympathize with people that are afraid, don't trust the data, fear the unknown, etc but the alternative as you rightly point out is kinda known and the facts are not good. There are people in the hospital asking for the vaccine now and being told it is too late. :( So sad.

:( No. Well, I am sure they will try to make the best decision. It may not be the best but if they try their best that is all we can do. We aren't clairvoyant sadly. It is hard but learning how to make the best decision is invaluable.

Wow, you love Caleb. Well, hopefully they find the right home. Sounds optimistic. If you feel that way there will be others, hopefully soon.

:( Yes, it can be shocking. Finding that balance, trying to get the right decisions is hard. It is a fast learning experience. Yes, bad situations can cause bad outcomes. It is like being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Almost uncontrollable. Add in some lackadaisical attitudes towards new pets and if luck is against you then something bad can happen. It is hard. BUT I am sure they try their best. It is just hard to always have it work out. Poor Luck...................... :( He sounds nice. Ughhhhhhhh, life is not fair sometimes. :(

TOTALLY. BUT it is rewarding. It is intense and really makes a person think. The key is to learn and get better and not let it impede a person. If a person learns to handle this then they can handle most anything. That is good. Since you are very smart and aware and honest that means something. Just keep being like that so if it does becomes too risky you can make the best decisions. And keep learning so some of the risks lessen. Experience is really important though experience can lead to complacency which is not good. So always be aware and wise. I think you will. :) She handled the bite incident extremely well. I was very impressed. I have a feeling that was very hard. Ahhhhh, yes. :/ The key is she analyzes the real risks and makes the best decision rather than overstating the real risks. It is hard when you love someone, hard to be rational but we have to try our best. Finding that balance between "risk vs reward" is not easy but we have to try. :/ Yes, we can't guarantee anything. And we have to be honest with that so then it is about probabilities of the risks. Yes, they are real but what mitigation can we do, how real are they, etc? Sometimes we underestimate the risks and need another perspective, but a rational, based on facts perspective. It is hard, life is hard. But we do figure it out. I will say, I guarantee your mom worries about you when you just go out, take the car, etc. Trust me, it is jut part of being a mom. :( We always worry. But you have to be honest about those risks to help make the right decisions. I think you will but it is hard sometimes when we really want to do something, sometimes we underestimate the risks. But if I have confidence in anyone to make the right decision it is you. I think you will. :) You are very wise. Just keep being honest with yourself.
 

Animal Freak

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I've been trying to do more with him. Still not as much as I used to, but more than I have been. We were going to go to the dog park today, but it rained this morning. Then we tried to take him to Petco for some practice around dogs, but apparently the storm this morning knocked out the electricity in that area, so nothing was open. So he ended up just going for a drive.

Yes. One would think people working at an animal shelter would be willing to take some risks, make some sacrifices, for the sake of others considering that's a huge part of this job.

It is hard. You wonder what's going on in their heads and wish you could explain to them that what they are doing is not helping them. If they don't like being there, then they need to stop acting like they're going to kill everyone who walks by. But unfortunately we can't do that.

I have a soft spot for the shy ones, which he is, and the ones that prefer people over other dogs, which he does. He's very sweet. Comes up to you and touches your hand with his nose or leans his head against you when he wants pets. And he'll wrap his paws around your waist and look up at you with such sad eyes. He also has very pretty coloring. Not my type of dog looking a bit like an American bulldog, but quite pretty nonetheless.

I've definitely learned and experienced a lot in a rather short period of time. Not really anything entirely surprising, just sooner than I expected. I was very much in the wrong place at the wrong time with Ozzie. A lot of bad luck there... No, like is really not fair. It's still hard to believe that he bit anyone let alone so severely.

It is rewarding and I am beginning to enjoy it a bit more as time goes on and I get comfortable. It helps everyone has been really nice and I've been more comfortable around them than I expected (not entirely comfortable, but still). I'm still a little more cautious with the dogs than a lot of them are. I like knowing the dogs know I'm there and getting to see/smell me before opening the door to get the leash on them. I'm not the most confident person and I have to make up for that by taking some precautions because I do think the dogs know I lack confidence. My mom is, for the most part, a reasonable person, but she does worry and stresses easily, not just about me but about things in general. I understand the concern, but it feels like she has no control over those fears and they just grow when there's no way for her to actively prevent them. I don't want to stress her unnecessarily and then she'll just have me questioning everything all over again and I'm tired of questioning everything. I know she worries about me. She had me put a tracker app on my phone so she'd know I was getting places safe and then she'll be texting me because the app will stop working and says I'm sitting in one place for a long time.
 

calicosrspecial

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That is good. It is hard with everything but I know you are doing your best. Ughhhhhh, the weather. :/ A drive is good though.

:/ Agreed. But there are a lot of factors. But I agree with you.

:( Yes. Fear is a big factor and history. It is hard. All we can do is our best. :/

Awwwwwwwwwww. You really like him. :) He sounds wonderful.

Yes. You are handling it really well. It is not easy. :/ Yes.

Well, THAT is REALLY great!!! I didn't expect you to write that is how you feel. That is great!!! I am glad to hear you are comfortable with everyone. I knew you would. It is understandbale you are more cautious with the dogs, that is wise. Sounds like you do it well, wisely. That is what I would do. Well, no one is really that confident and sometimes people that are confident are too confident and are fools. :/ Finding the balance is key. It sounds like you are doing really well. :)

Your mom sounds wonderful and like so many of us worries!! So she is normal!!! ;) It is good you understand them and then rationalize what to do about them. That is really smart and mature (and very hard for most people). I guess i can sympathize with your mom because well, I am a lot like that. And it is hard to find the balance. Like it is easy to not stress too much about being crushed by a meteor or something but when our loved one is out and about..................... And then accepting our baby is growing up and all the emotions of everything, it is pretty hard. :/ You are right, when we worry and question it can make our loved one more questioning and cautious and limited etc. So we think we are doing our best but trying to realize it is unproductive is really hard but important. You are so mature and intelligent that I think you can have those adult conversations in a respectful and understanding way in time. Understanding both sides is important then trying to find a good balance, middle ground. I personally have so much trust and confidence in you but sometimes things are out of our control. So it is balancing what is controllable and what isn't and trying to be in the best places to ensure the most positive outcomes. It is not easy but I do think your goals are the same, it is just how to get there where you two may differ a touch. I do think you get stronger and better with all this so some questioning is good but too much is risky. BUT there is a balance and I know you will find it. You are too intelligent and wise and mature not to. :)

I think of myself at your age and how much further along you are. And so much wiser. And more experience etc will only make you ever better. :)

It is so funny. I read your posts and I see this confident person. We all have insecurities to some degree but I think you may be more confident than you think. Being wise and cautious is smart not lacking of confidence. We all can be more confident but I think you are at a better baseline of confidence than you may realize. I guess I think you are pretty AWESOME!!! :)
 

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I finished my last final! I'm done with this semester. Actually, I'm done with this college. I'll be starting at a 4-year college in September.

I just got an email today saying the shelter is going back to requiring masks for anyone not vaccinated and that includes staff, volunteers, adopters, etc. Not sure how they're going to make sure everyone who walks in without a mask is vaccinated though.

Stewart, the dog that was in bite quarantine, has been euthanized. He was scheduled to be earlier today. He'd finally stopped acting like he was going to murder me when I walked by his kennel too. One of the staff who is apparently close to him took him out for a while today. It's sad and I feel bad for her, but I'm not surprised. It was no life for him.

He peed on my yesterday. :ohwell: I didn't appreciate that. Lol. We put him in a somewhat risky group because we had three dogs who have had incidences in the play yards in there, including one Caleb has had an issue with and another who isn't mean, but quite pushy and did go after another dog once. They did surprisingly well for the most part, but a few minutes or so after peeing on me, Caleb started getting cranky, especially towards that pushy dog.

We also have another really nervous dog in the shelter. She's usually in a foster home, but she's in the shelter right now. She's scared of everyone, but especially men, and especially the guy I worked with the last couple of days. The other guys can handle her well enough, but this guy can't get close to her. He was able to get her out in the play yard for groups, but then couldn't get the leash off. I had to go out and get it. So I took her in and have taken her for walks. I also sat in her kennel for a bit today. She's super sweet once she warms up to you, but definitely does not need to be in the shelter.

It's still a lot and there are certainly parts I don't like (cleaning litter boxes!), but I like getting to know the animals. I'm getting quicker about things and feeling better about taking some time to enjoy being with the animals. I'm getting to know the cats now. Taking care of them doesn't really involve interacting with them, so I was mostly just working around them. Now I'm taking the time to get to know them. So many sweet cats. A lot of torties too! One of them acts a lot like Ember.

She is. The problem is that we're both easily stressed, anxious people and we can enhance that for each other. Sometimes it feels like I have to fake a level of confidence that I don't actually have to keep us both sane. I understand her concerns, but then we both knew these risks were involved with this job. We just didn't expect for them to become real so quickly. I'm trying to figure out what the right amount of questioning is. In the past, I've definitely questioned too much. I'm trying to get better at making a decision and sticking with it.

I think it's easier to hide insecurities when your type. Even when I talk, I don't tend to come off as anxious as I am. Also, just because I know something doesn't mean I can act on it. Knowing and acting on that knowledge are two very different things. The fear is definitely real and it causes me a good amount of stress. Thank you though. I try not to let my anxiety get the best of me.
 

calicosrspecial

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FANTASTIC!!! CONGRATULATIONS!!!! :) :clap2:

Well, that is a good first step. Agreed. We are everyone is required to wear a mask. And now since the CDC says that vaccinated people probably can transmit the virus I think it will be pretty soon when everyone will have to wear a mask regardless of vaccination status. We have to get a hold of this. :( Argghhhhhhhhh. We were so close.

:( Ughhhhhhh, It is so hard. :( All we can do is our best and hopefully the dogs that take the space will be saved and find happy homes. Tough stuff. :/ It is all grey, no black and white decisions sadly.

:( Yep, that happens. :( Good that they did pretty well for the most part. Yeah, sometimes as time passes they do get more cranky. :/ Did he not appreciate you paying attention to the other dogs?

:( Ughhhhhh, heartbreaking. I know. I truly believe 99.9999999% of animals are great in the right home. The problem is, finding the right home. :( Hopefully she can find her mojo and the right home. If given a chance she could do well it seems. Fingers crossed.

Yep, litter boxes (not fun!!!). Just make sure you stay hygienic. Oh yes, getting to know the animals is the coolest. There are many similarities but also the uniqueness. It sounds like you are really settling in. GREAT!!! Yes, a lot of sweet cats. :( And torties. :( Awwwww, like Ember. I just hope there are the homes for them. I really struggle finding homes for amazing cats. :( BUT shelters have a better chance.

:) That is great. Yes, that happens. When people share the same traits they can sadly unwittingly enhance those and when it is unproductive it is a bit negative. Well, I hope you go through the facts etc and come to a confident assessment. Yes, the risks kinda came too quickly so it is shocking. But you are really smart, really rational, really mature. And I think those are working. And I think you have to be honest and if they are to much (the risks) then you have to make the best decision. Oh, well, we ALL try to figure out he right amount of questioning. In fact, if we aren't asking that of ourselves maybe we aren't trying to make the best decisions. The key is that it is productive rather than paralyzing and negative. And that takes iterations and learning etc. I KNOW you will find the right balance and keep moving forward to continue to make the right progress. The fact you are even thinking of that is a great sign. If we define an issue then we can improve it. We ALL have questioned too much BUT realizing it is the key so we can improve it in the future. NO ONE is perfect, but if we do our best then we make more good decisions than bad. The way you are thinking you will do great in the future. Yes, that is great but if the facts change then you may have to change the decision. But I think you are intelligent so if anyone can do their best it is you.

Do you think so? I don't know, I would think it would come out in some way. I don't think you consciously edit out all insecurities, I don't think that is even possible if a person tried and tried. Interesting that even when you talk it doesn't come out s much. I wonder if you think you are less secure than you really are? Oh yes, I agree, just because we know doesn't mean we can act on it. Agreed. I think everyone is like that to some degree. Even the most confident appearing people have insecurities in there. It is amazing how you perceive someone as confident than in person they are massively different. I am thinking actors specifically. Everyone is pretty much the same, everyone has insecurities, just to different degrees. Yes, we all have fear. The key is to manage it and accept it and turn it from a negative to a positive. Or try to and in time succeed. Stress is unproductive and holds a person back. It is hard to control but if you can chip away at it over time it can really allow you to achieve even more than you realize (and what I think you are capable of). The fact you are aware and want to improve tells me you can and will. I was very afraid of computers, I don't understand them and get stressed easily over problems with them but I am getting better, trying. It is something I need to work on. And using them really makes my life better because i get to meet people like you and help people that I would never have had the opportunity to and I find happiness in that. You are going to be, I know that. :) You are still AWESOME!!! ;)
 

Animal Freak

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Thank you. It was a rather anti-climactic end. It's still hard to believe I'm done with this college.

We aren't required masks yet, but it'll probably get there. Right now places are starting to get a little more serious about requiring masks for unvaccinated people. Up until now, that's technically been the rule at most places, but hasn't been reinforced. I understand the need and will certainly follow the rules, but I do not want to go back to wearing the mask. I already get so hot and uncomfortable at work.

It is hard, but then it's like what else are you supposed to do with a dog like that? Even if they found someone with the knowledge and experience to take him, they likely wouldn't have ever been able to trust him or let their guard down.

They say Caleb gets jealous, but I don't think it's that simple. I've petted on him and a couple of other dogs at the same time without issue. It doesn't seem to be when you're actively petting him or petting someone else that triggers it. I'm not sure exactly what it is as I haven't figured out the pattern yet. Sometimes it seems to be when he wants attention, but sometimes it's just when another dog is in his face.

They have pictures of her in her foster home and she definitely seemed more comfortable there. I hope they take her back or find another foster for her. She does not need to be in the shelter. She's very cute and very sweet, but just so scared. I couldn't imagine being that terrified 24/7.

They are all unique. I always find it amazing how well the cats seem to do with each other. There are some issues sometimes, but for the most part they get along better than my three who have quite a bit more space than those cats do. And so many of them are just so sweet. You'd think the cats in the shelter would be cats with bad attitudes or something going on to make people want to give them up, but most of them seem great. I'm sure the torties will get adopted pretty fast. They're very pretty and very sweet. They weren't available to the public because they didn't have their rabies vaccination, but I think they're up to date now. There was an adoption event on Friday, so it'll be interesting to see who's gone when I go back tomorrow. And if there are any new ones. They usually bring new animals in on Sunday.

It was definitely very shocking. I always try to be honest (with myself and with other people), but I do feel like there's some pressure with this job since it's what I want to do with my life. I want to make it work which could be a problem with assessing the risks. However, I am curious to see how other shelters run. We still want to move too and, unfortunately, there's not much around this shelter that we can afford. But for now I can keep learning and seeing how they do things. I don't think they're the most well-run shelter, but they are always trying to do things better.

Actually talking to people doesn't cause me too much of a problem unless it's unexpected. I have a hard time when people start talking to me when I did expect them too and it takes a moment for my brain to catch up. It's initiated conversations that I have the hardest time with. Being online, being able to type/edit, talking about animals, and having spoken to you for so long helps my anxiety a lot. It's still there at times, but nothing like it used to be. Fortunately, I have always been a good writer so I think that helps. As long as I stick with topics I'm comfortable with, it isn't a huge issue. I couldn't tell you how many times I've gone to talk to someone just to back out and do that over and over again until I either finally manage or lose my chance.
 

calicosrspecial

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:) Well, anti-climatic is good!!! No one wants to be pulled into the Dean's office.............. ;) You went through so quickly!! Awesome!!!

Yes, I think we are going back to universal masking. The breakthrough cases are happening (being found mostly in over 65s BUT my guess is others are being infected just what degree is the question - then IF they can spread it). And the more this virus gets a chance to figure out ways around the vaccine the more issues we may have. :( Yes, masks are not comfortable sadly. :( We are back to basically not going anywhere anymore for our safety since we are at high risk. So no masking only socially distancing by staying at home. :( Let's hope we knock this out once and for all but I suspect we may be going into a tough time. Let's hope the vaccine stays effective and protects those vaccinated. So far so good but who knows the next variant (but if we can stop it from mutating then hopefully we are close to being safe again). Ughhhhhhhhh. Stay safe.

I know. :/ It is tough but part of life. Life is not fair sadly. Wow, you really think it would have been unlikely an experienced person wouldn't be able to trust, etc? :/

Sounds like a really good learning experience. I am interested to see what you think it may be.

:( Heartbreaking. HOPEFULLY she finds a home soon.

Well, cats are so territorial so when they don't feel like they own the territory yet they don't feel the need to defend it as much. That could be part of why they do so well (also they tend to be younger). I LOVE torties!! Cool, it will be interesting to see who got adopted.

Yes, it is shocking. :( Oh, you really shouldn't feel pressure. This is not your only chance. MANY people change careers, fail at what thye want to do at first (not that you are), etc. But if you learn and do your best no avenue to your dream will be blocked I really believe that. There is nothing wrong with saying "the risks are too great right now BUT later I will have more knowledge, etc. I think you should assess the risks and be honest. And if the current time and/or place isn't right that does not mean the next one will not be, etc. BUT if the risks are acceptable then that is good. But please try to be as honest as possible. No one successful is successful right of the bat. Well, very, very, very, very few are. President Biden ran for president before. If he quit then he would not be president. Etc. The key is to learn. I am so glad you say you will continue to learn and see. The key for your shelter is they are trying to improve and that is the key. Everyone and every organization can get better. What is important is that they continue to try and improve. once we stop it usually is not great. :/

Well THAT is great!!! Yes, the unexpected conversation can cause issues (for most people - me included). You still have anxiety with me? :( Bummer BUT I am glad it is less than before!!! :) Yes, you are a great writer. Well. most people are more comfortable with topics they know a lot about. And the best thing to do on topics we don't know much about is to just be honest and say "I don't know much about that". I think people respect honestly and there is nothing to feel badly about. So if someone asked me about car engines I have no idea about them. So I would just say "I sadly don't know anything about those, tell me about them" and let them talk and try to absorb what they are saying (even though I don't care at all about car engines!!!! ) Hahahahahaha And if someone thinks I am stupid for not knowing about car engines it is their issue, not mine. :)

"I couldn't tell you how many times I've gone to talk to someone just to back out and do that over and over again until I either finally manage or lose my chance." - Oh my, we all have done and do that. But you are intelligent, a great person, there is no reason why you should feel like you can't and in time you will realize you can. And if the person is a jerk or mean then it is their issue not yours. BUT I think you will find most people are pretty nice. And I think once you see they are pretty nice you will do great speaking with them. I know you can do it!!! :) Just practice and the more you do it the better you will become. :)
 
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