My apologies. I sort of feel I whipped through the last few days of Ty’s travels in April a little too fast. Kind of like a mixer churning on the fastest setting. So I hope to slow things down somewhat in May and going into summer. The intention with writing Ty’s blog is to illustrate his journey, not race to his destination. Because as I write this post the date is August 2, 2015 and our journey together is still growing and evolving, waxing and waning. Spoiler alert, we have setbacks still and great leaps forward and periods of stagnant waiting. We just completed a stagnant period and emerged from a couple big strides forward.

But that is August, and this post today is about May’s journey.

Sunday, May 3rd and we made a trip to the national forest. Ty is getting better by now at getting into my truck and riding pretty good. Arriving at the forest half an hour later, he emerged pumped, excited and eager. We walked around and he took it all in. His tail partially emerged, head up, staying close to me. He never gave me the wild bolt I stayed prepared for.

We passed a few fisherman and a couple of people walking their dogs. They commented how beautiful Ty was. He gave them all a passing glance, keeping his gaze ahead, even ignoring their curious dogs. Even the little one pulling on its leash and yapping noisily. Well, Ty is the king of ignore when he feels the need.

We finally made it to the river, my favorite place, and he plunged straight in, submerging all four feet halfway up the leg. Instantly he bolted out, stopping and standing a few feet onto the bank, staring at the water in total disbelief. Clearly he had not expected it to be cold and wet! What a priceless moment.

Ty at Davidson Riv 5-3-15

So I sat on a log, he at my side and he listened as I chatted about why I liked this place. He avoided the water again so the question will be what he does when we return here again. When we went to leave, a few more people stopped to say what a lovely dog Ty is. He took it all in stride and returned home a tired, but content pup. I am very pleased with how our first official forest jaunt went. The only real complaint I have is his lack of obedience training still. I tried hard for some sit-stay photos but he was too busy wanting to explore things to be bothered.

oh well.Ty at davidson River 5-3-2015  Ty at Pisgah Forest 5-3-2015

Ty at Pisgah 5-3-15

Tuesday, May 5th  I came home from work and Ty literally met me at the door, most unusual, and barreled past me in a rush for the porch. Stunned at his forwardness, I dropped my stuff to grab him. Purse, lunchbox and water bottle went sailing as I wrestled him back inside the door, me on my knees physically pushing him backward. Slamming the door closed, I snatched up his leash, and within moments we were safely going outside. The poor boy really had to go! But now he knows he can go to the door without waiting for an invite.  He just needs to learn the leash is mandatory!

Wednesday morning, I wasn’t even out of the shower and he was pacing at the door, ready to do. His second trip was unscheduled and at his request. I was about to take the trash and bird suet out, picked up my keys and he stirred from his cave, came to the door and sat, waiting for the leash.

He was getting it! Leaving suet and trash, I hooked up his leash amid lots of praise. My errand would wait till we returned. Later in the day, the gas man came to  fill the tank and light the pilots. Ty stayed in his cave, watching.  He showed no obvious fear, but he sure was wary and watchful. I wondered what he would have done had the man tried to get rough with me. Would he leap heroically to my rescue? Probably not. But that’s okay. Protection isn’t high up on my list for him.

Thursday, May 7th, a friend stopped in for a visit. In anticipation, Ty and I were outside in the fenced yard. As she got out of the car, he rose from where he’d been lying next to me at the swing and retreated to the far side of the fenced area, ears back and panting increased. His pace was wide and fast. Tail down.

{Sigh. Was he always going to be fearful?} It took about ten minutes for me to slowly work him to get next to her while she just stood by the tree. Thank goodness she understood his fear and was patient. I held his leash and we just chatted, giving him time to adjust and process. Finally he laid down at my feet, his front paws crossed. Wow! That was huge.

Still wary and panting, he stayed as my friend stooped down and allowed him to slowly sniff her hand. She worked up to a gentle pat, from the side of course, and soon she was petting him repetitively. He seemed to enjoy it. He even licked her hand a couple of times.

This was Ty’s red-letter day! He’d met a stranger, faced his fears, conquered them and made a friend. I was so proud of him! Yeah, Ty!