Labradoodle & Goldendoodle Forum
As a child, there was nothing quite as exciting as being handed a wrapped present. Christmas or Birthday, it didn’t matter. The gift was for you and there was something special inside. You couldn’t open that box fast enough.
Adopting a doodle has been a similarly exciting experience but I have learned that you have to be patient to get to the wonderful gift that is inside.
In June 2011, we adopted Ollie from DRC. He was a rehome and while he was a nice dog, he came with his fair share of issues. To stick with the gift analogy, he appeared to be a nicely wrapped package, but when we got him home and took that wrapping off, we found that the box had some bent corners and a lot of tape holding it tightly closed. And while we were very anxious to be able to open that box and see the wonderful personality that was hidden inside, we had to stay patient and wait.
We had to deal with the issues between Cubbie and Ollie and with the fact that Ollie was afraid of my husband for at least the first 2 weeks. He couldn’t really walk on a leash, was very nervous in the car, and was pretty much afraid of everyone and everything. We weren’t able to get too close to him and he would quickly snatch a treat and run away. Ollie eventually warmed up to my husband and while still timid and unsure, we could tell that Ollie realized that this is his home. We wondered whether this was his true personality or if there was something even more special yet to come.
Love, patience, and training have helped immensely and the terrified dog that we brought home with us almost a year ago is mostly just a distant memory. There are still some issues that need to be addressed and some new issues that have appeared (like the fact that he always runs up into Cubbie’s face and grabs one of Cubbie’s ears when he gets excited about going for a walk or a ride which tends not to make Cubbie too happy, but we are working on it). Ollie is still very frightened of my brother (we are guessing that he somehow reminds him of something negative about his past) but has begun to allow strangers approach him while out in public which was something that we never really thought he would do.
Somehow without us even realizing it, the tape that had been holding that present tightly inside that banged up box had slowly begun to fall away until all that was left was the present that had been trapped inside: a happy, crazy, loving doodle named Ollie. He can now be found charging across the floor like a tank while chasing after a ball, gazing out the window at the world as it goes by, following us around the house with a toy hanging gently from his mouth, wrestling with Cubbie, or climbing up on your lap to shower you with Ollie Kisses. So thank you DRC for giving us the wonderful gift that is Ollie and for trusting that we had the patience to slowly unwrap that present to discover the treasure that was inside.