Most of you know (or I think most of you know) that Brian and I have two big dogs. Onyx and Brenna. They are greyhounds, both retired racing dogs. They make great house pets, in case you’re wondering, but that’s not what this post is about.
Greyhounds are pack dogs. Because our dogs came to us as adults (3 and 4 years old) we didn’t have to train them, so it was relatively easy to establish the pack order in our house. They were already housebroken so really the only rule they had to learn was not to get on the furniture. We quickly made it clear that we were in charge of the pack and they accepted that.
We wondered, though, how they would react when Kalena was born. It was interesting to watch them when we brought her home. Brenna was accepting of her right away. She was very interested in this new little thing, and spent the first few days smelling everything that the baby came in contact with. Onyx, on the other hand, wasn’t so sure. She spent the first few weeks leaving the room every time we brought the baby into it and generally acting as if Kalena didn’t exist. She has a little more dominant personality than Brenna, and I think she felt displaced by the baby, especially since we (obviously) had the baby on the furniture, the one place she’s not allowed.
After awhile Onyx stopped leaving the room if the baby was in it, and started seeming a little more curious about her. She stopped ignoring Kalena, and stopped ignoring us if we were holding her. She seemed to adjust to having a baby around and we thought that was the end of it. But over the last week or so we’ve noticed some new things. Onyx started going upstairs (something she almost never did before) regularly and laying on the floor in front of the nursery room door. She now often does this at night while Kalena is asleep. Also, she has started coming to find us if Kalena is fussing as if to say– hey! The baby needs you!
I guess Onyx has decided that if this baby is going to be a permanent member of the pack then she might as well watch over her. It’s pretty cute.