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Friday, 10 April 2015

WHEN THİNGS DON'T WORK OUT

It is with so much regret and sadness that I have to tell you that we can't keep Olive.

When she came to us 8 days ago to be fostered for two weeks, she was understandably nervous, but within 24 hours she had settled and continued to gain confidence.  She chews everything in sight but I am used to chewers so this isn't something that bothers me at all.

We decided we would like to keep her.  She is such a lovely girl and I hoped and expected her to find her place in our family.

The 6 big dogs just won't accept her.  She stands at a distance from the fence and they bark furiously at her.  She looks quite sad and eventually walks away from them.  I have tried to integrate them.  I shut the 4 small dogs on the balcony and brought the big dogs out one by one to get to know Olive.  It seemed ok at first but gradually Olive became quite stressed.  I tried for hours to get it to work, but with no success.   And they continued to bark non-stop at her...all day.

This has caused a problem with my neighbours who are complaining bitterly at the increase in barking during the past week.  I think you all know by now that I don't trust anyone in this village, even my neighbours.  They'll smile to your face then stab you in the back.  It wouldn't surprise me at all if they were to throw poison over the fence.

Every time I hear them bark in the middle of the night, which is actually quite rare these days, I rush out with the torch to check on them.  Since we experienced firsthand the results of poisoning and shooting dogs in this village, it is my greatest fear that something will happen to my dogs.  We have made the perimeter as safe as possible but there's only so much you can do.

The problem as I see it, is that Olive is too big and strong for the little dogs, but not big enough to integrate with the big dogs.

Yesterday morning I experienced a very frightening incident that could have ended in tragedy.

Timmy winds up all the dogs.  He is a big dog in a tiny body.  He barks at all the dogs.  He bites the  small dogs  legs and ears but they tolerate it.  They are not much bigger than him so no damage is done.

Yesterday he was in the driveway doing the same to Olive.  I happened to be closeby which was just as well.  Suddenly Olive turned on Timmy, grabbed him by the neck and started to shake him.  I literally had to throw myself on them to rescue Timmy.  He was ok, if a little shaken, but it could have been so much worse.

This upset me greatly as you can imagine and I was shaking for sometime after.

Mr A is working now, staying in accommodation and not coming home very often.  I go to England in 10 days time and the dogs will be on their own every day and Mr A will come home late afternoon.  Clearly there is no way that they can now be left alone.  I am stuck here.  I have bills to pay in Milas, a visit to the bank, and Tommy has an eye infection so I need to get drops from the vet.  I need to get out to check on supplies of dog food with those people who are feeding dogs for us,  but I can't even risk walking down to the village for bread.

We took Olive as a favour to Jacky who moved the mum Lucy and her pups to safety.  Jacky is in England at the moment so I'm unable to contact her, so I phoned her husband Jim.  He could tell by my voice that I was upset and he said that he would come over today to collect Olive.  She will go to another foster placement, until a permanent home can be found for her.

It's the last thing I wanted to happen, but I have spent the last 24 hours trying to keep Timmy and Olive apart.  You'd have thought he might have learned his lesson...no chance...at every opportunity he tries to bite Olive again.  It's exhausting and worrying.  The whole thing seems to have affected the other dogs as well.  Tommy won't come outside if Olive is there.   Fistik bares her teeth at Olive every time she comes near, and she (Fistik) has also started to go to toilet in the house.

I feel like I have failed, even though I've talked this through with a couple of friends and they have tried to reassure me.   I'm so sad for Olive but I have to protect all of the dogs.  She is not an aggressive dog, but obviously  she will defend  herself.  She is really quite placid and affectionate, but clearly this is not the home for her.  I hope she finds a home that will suit her because she so deserves it.

14 comments:

  1. I used to break my heart over stray dogs in Turkey. I spent most of my childhood outside trying to 'look after them'

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    1. And I am sure they appreciated it...bless you xx

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  2. No fault of Olives nor of yourselves...it's just the wrong combination - as you say she is too big for one group and too small for the other and the last thing you want is a serious fight.
    Heartbreaking, though.

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    1. It is Helen. I'm in tears now as she's gone. Yes I think you're right...wrong combination. I'm so relieved to get some reassurance from people as I have had one reaction which was quite judgmental. I shouldn't be so sensitive and should accept that it was only one opinion.

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  3. So sorry it didn't work out, Ayak. You have tried so hard and mustn't blame yourself. At least now you will be able to continue with a greater sense of confidence that things will be ok whilst you're away. Olive will find another home, I'm sure. She looked like a lovely dog. Hugs, Axxx

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    1. She is a lovely dog Annie. I hope she will fit in nicely with someone else.

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  4. Ayak, you did your very best to integrate Olive into your family of dogs and it just didn't work out. That's all you or anyone could have done and you mustn't beat yourself up about it. I'm sure such a likeable dog will find a forever home before long.

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    1. I hope so Perpetua. Thankyou xx

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  5. At least you gave it a go. Don't let yourself get too down over it. You tried, it didn't work, Olive is no worse off than she was before, but you now feel awful! That's not good for you.

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  6. Ayak, you say above " I feel like I have failed". This would have been true IF.. you had refused to foster Olive. IF...you had not even tried. IF...you had given up earlier, after 1 day instead of 8. IF...you had not tried to integrate Olive with the other dogs. IF... you had not carried on trying under very difficult circumstances, even though you knew that you would encounter the wrath of your neighbours. IF you had not put your own safety at risk trying to save Timmy. IF...NO MORE IF' OR BUT'S.
    You Ayak, went above and beyond the call of duty on this, and many other occasions. You make me proud to spell my name W.O.M.A.N.
    Be proud of yourself, for everything you have done and will continue to do, we are all so very proud of you. End Of.
    Kind regards as always
    Jan

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  7. I think that maybe you've reached the limit as to how many dogs you can house. The thing is, that if we were all to be crammed into a small space with strangers....... eventually we'd get aggressive with each other.
    So I think you've done an excellent job looking after the ones you have, but maybe it's time to think that you can't take every stray that you want. I know this must be very difficult because they're obviously in danger from immense cruelty. But........ you really can't do it all.
    You are doing a wonderful job so don't beat yourself up about Olive.
    Maggie x

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    1. Thanks Maggie. Yes you're right. I think we have definitely reached our limit. We will just have to continue to help those on the streets, feed them and keep them healthy, for as long as we can xx

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If you would like to help my rescue dogs and the strays (dogs and cats) of our village and local industrial estate, please email me for details at lindaikaya@hotmail.com Thankyou x