My new rescue: Cassidy! - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-02-2010, 04:07 PM Thread Starter
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My new rescue: Cassidy!

Hi Everyone!

I joined here sometime after I got my first havanese GusGus last summer (I have lurked around a lot, but never had anything of my own to post.). He has been a dream come true and an absolute best friend! Because we never introduced ourselves properly, I attached a picture of Guser is his Christmas coat :-)

I was totally happy with just one havanese, but my friend learned of a poor little girl in a less than great sitation. She didn't have it as bad as many rescues, being kept in garages or dark cages, but her mom just didn't understand how to be a good mommy. She had other dogs and let them bully Cassidy since she was first brought home as a pup (Cas is a little less than a year old now) and did not pay attention to Cas's grooming needs--resulting in a very timid girl with severely matted undercoat. I am afraid there might be more to the story though because she is terrified of men!

We decided to *foster* Cassidy since we have experience with Havs and understand their temperament and typical behaviors. We are hoping her timidity can be overcome because she really is such a sweet girl!

On Wednesday DH was taking the pups out to potty and Cassidy got spooked and ended up slipping out of her collar. Because she is scared of men, when DH reached down to grab her, she took off running! She was last seen heading straight down the middle of a moderately busy street. Needless to say, we were wrecks! We distributed over 450 flyer, hung up posters, put ads in the paper and on craigslist, contacted every shelter/vet/pound in the area, and scoured the areas endlessly. After four very scary days, someone called us and had found her!

For being 25 degrees outside and snowing, she was in surprisingly good shape! Aside from behing dehydrated, the vet gave her a clean bill of health. Unfortunately her coat was much more matted than it started with (I had initially had hopes of getting her all combed out) so she had to be shaved ALL THE WAY down. I included pictures from the day we got her, the day she was found, and the day she got groomed.

Anyway, I was hoping for some advice. GusGus has been a perfect little gentleman to Cassidy. In fact, he was so excited when she came home because he had a new playmate! However, Cassidy is somewhat agressive towards GusGus. I assume it is because she has only interacted with bullying dogs and doesn't know the proper way to ineract, but GusGus has started avoiding her. She doesn't growl or bare her teeth or anything, but she snaps at him if he has a toy she wants and occassionally if he comes up to me when she is sitting beside me. Does anyone have good techniques for curtailing this type of behavior? How about overcoming her phobia of men?

I would really like to adopt Cassidy, but I don't want Guser to have to live in fear. And I also don't want Cas to become a shrinking violet everytime DH is in the room. Thanks in advance!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Gus Christmas.jpg (49.5 KB, 9 views)
File Type: jpg Cassidy.jpg (29.4 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg cas home.jpg (45.0 KB, 10 views)
File Type: jpg cas shaved.jpg (33.4 KB, 11 views)
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-02-2010, 04:17 PM
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What cute little Havs GusGus and Cassidy are! My only advice is concerning being afraid of men. Abby was like that when we got her at 8 mos. old and the thing that worked best was giving little treats. My DH gave her treats and now she loves him, too! Of course, this was a gradual process. Good luck with Cassidy - she is a beautiful girl. I'm sure you will get lots of good advice from this forum.

Kathie, Abby & McGee's Mom
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-02-2010, 05:18 PM
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Welcome to the Forum. Precious photos. GusGus and Cassidy will probably work out their pecking order in time and become friends. Many of the Havs seem to have men issues when fostered, your DH feeding and caring for her will change that in time.

Good luck and keep us posted

Sandi, taking a new road with Smarty and Galen
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-02-2010, 05:29 PM
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They are adorable. I'm sure that they will work out their hierarchy with no problem, given a little time. As for the issue with men, it has been a recurrent problem with some havs and the advice often has been to have the men in your world give the dog treats in a very non threatening way over time. However, since I've not personally had that issue, I'll leave the advice to those who know better.

I know the terror you must have felt when she disappeared, having lived through it myself more than once. Thank goodness her angels were working overtime to protect her.

<b>Just Milo and me, and . . . </b>Bailey makes three . . . until Ruby said, "hey, what about me?"
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-02-2010, 05:30 PM
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You are wonderful to take in Cassidy and with some work & patience & some of the good advice given here, it should all work out! And I'm so glad you found Cassidy after she bolted. Phew. Another chance.

and HEATH-Y, TOO !
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-02-2010, 08:36 PM
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Great looking "kids".

The only advise I have is please buy a harness-the dogs are less likely to slip out of that than a regular collar.

So glad to hear you got her back and that she was in good shape.

Pat (humom to)
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-02-2010, 08:42 PM
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I agree, a harness will make you feel better!!! Glad she was found unharmed!
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-03-2010, 09:12 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice! I just went out an bought a harness for her. Hopefully this will give me a little more peace of mind.

She is SUCH a sweet girl and is already making progress. In fact, after I wrote this last night after, she let my DH pet her for a little while--a huge step! I have high hopes that she will overcome much of her timidity, but I know it will be a gradual process and take some time. I will keep you posted!
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-03-2010, 09:47 AM
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The other thing to remember with timid dogs is that no dog likes to be loomed over. They should be approached sideways, then crouch down and offer a treat sideways. The treat can even be tossed nearer the dog if it is unwilling to approach. If the person is a stranger, it is good if they avoid eye contact at first, or even just stand with their back to the dog until the dog is curious and comes over to sniff. Then give lots of treats, but without bending over the dog.

This was advice from our dog trainer with Rascal who started going through some shyness with strangers at the door, especially men. We had anyone who came to the door, who was willing, go through the procedure with him. It is making a difference!

Dorothy (Rascal and Pixie)
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-03-2010, 10:46 AM
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Aww Cassidy is cute! Her face reminds me of Maddie's!

Natalie - Roscoe and Stella's mom, Maddie's part-time mom
"Whoever said you can't buy happiness forgot about little puppies." - Gene Hill
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