Since moving in with Jeremy in Chicago, there have been a few things that have made this past week and a half less than desirable. Well, one thing actually. George.
George is Jeremy’s dog, and since the day he brought that monster home, he has hated me. Now, because he hated me, I’ll admit, I wasn’t the nicest to him, but it has escalated into something that is stressful, troublesome, and continues to get worse.
It started with George just avoiding me. When I came into a room, he’d run and hide by Jeremy. When I tried to touch him or pet him, he’d wince. When I tried to take him for a walk or let him outside, he’d run to a place where I couldn’t reach him, or hide under furniture. It then progressed into growling, snarling, biting, and using the house as a bathroom. I’ve always just ignored him, because he’s Jeremy’s dog, and Jeremy loves him, but it’s become a serious problem in our lives. And, although the wrong species, he’s turned into quite the elephant in the room.
Today I came home, Jeremy is working late, and I wanted to let George outside. He’s been inside all day, and I know he has to go. Usually I survey the situation before I attempt it. If he’s already hiding because he sees it’s me walking through to door, I usually let him be. I’m not going to stir the pot just so he can tinkle. But his ears were perked up, and he was standing, and seemed a little disappointed, but not afraid. So I thought, he’ll let me let him out. This will be ok. I walked up to him, and he let me touch him. Good sign. So I grabbed his collar (lightly) and brought him over to the leash tied up outside just like we always do. As soon as I touched him, he started yelping bloody murder, pooping all over the place, and peeing. The leash was right there, so instead of letting go, I quickly hooked him on, and he ran outside. Awesome.
But now my house is full of dog poop, there’s pee all over the floor, and he scratched my entire right arm up from hand to elbow. And it hurts. I hope it doesn’t add the the scars he’s already left on that hand. I didn’t do anything differently than I normally would. And I know why he yelps. Usually someone comes running to save him from the “big bad Jenni.” But it was just me. So I’m sure the neighbors think I’m beating the dog, and I’m angry that the first thing I’m going to do now that I’m home is clean poop and scrub the carpet, but that’s George.
It gets better. He sat outside for a long while. I let the dust settle, changed my clothes, and let us both relax for a little bit. I pulled lightly on the leash, letting him know he was coming inside. On the way in, he peed all over the door frame, and as soon as I unhooked him, he squatted and took another massive dump right on the carpet.
How do you not get angry? How do you keep your cool? I locked him in the bathroom, because I literally can’t stand the sight of him. And I know it’s not fair to Jeremy, but I sent him pictures of the whole thing. I know he doesn’t need to be bombarded with that while he’s working, but, seriously, something’s got to give with this creature. We’re going on a year and a half of this behavior (yes, you read that right)!
So Jeremy mentioned it to a therapist he knows. Apparently, this is really normal for couples. Most couples that have pets fight about the pets. Especially if one person owned the pet before the other was in the picture. It is one of the leading causes of fights this guy sees on a daily basis from couples. I feel validated in my anger when I hear that, but that doesn’t offer me up a solution. This is my home now too, and I’m definitely not going to tip-toe around it for a dog. What do I do? How do we fix this? Is this George’s territory? Am I supposed to be submissive to him, and get out of his way? I’m at my wits end with this animal. And I’m a dog lover! I’ve had them my whole life!
I just do not know how to handle this holy terror anymore…