The New Puppy

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We made a family decision to have a new puppy; we had lost our old dog about two years ago. Faith had been three and a half at the time. We find every time she has a sad moment, she will tell you she is crying because she misses ‘Henry’. I do realise that she is only associating a sad time for her with the way she is feeling. Karl and I had lots of conversations over whether we should get another one or not, I hoped it may be a distraction for her or a calming process having him to play with. Though at the same time I was nervous of her hurting the puppy when she was cross or feeling aggressive. After much deliberation we decided to go ahead and get the girls a new puppy. Not only for Faith, but also for the older two, who have been through so much over the last few years and were desperate for another dog. The girls had been with us a few weeks ago to pick the puppy they wanted and then Karl and I went to pick him up when they were in school, so when they came home he was waiting for them in the garden. The three girls were over the moon when they came in the garden, the three of them running around the garden with him. Only ten minutes after being home, Faith started crying and getting upset. She found it all too much, moaning the puppy didn’t love her, the puppy wouldn’t come to her, and the puppy wouldn’t play with her. No matter how much we tried to explain that Koda (which is what the girls had decided to call the puppy) was only a baby and it would take time for him to learn his name, she found it all too much. A nice surprise ended up being a nightmare, I was gutted. I had wanted her to be so happy and enjoy him. Faith ended up taking herself into her own room and scratching and biting her own arm. This problem has been increasing in school also, peer socialising. She loves all her friends, but she doesn’t know how to cope with them walking away from her for any reason. She takes it all so much to heart; she immediately feels it is all personal and that nobody loves her. This is what she has started to do with the dog. We have tried to ignore it and to just continually reassure her that he loves her as we all do. The next few days got easier, I slowly introduced her to Koda again the next morning on her own showing her how to play with him and explaining that he is still a baby who will want to sleep throughout the day. Things seem to have been better since doing this, though also we are in the process of changing from Lacosomide, which we are reducing and Carbamazabine which we are slowly increasing. Since being on this mixture she does appear to be much brighter and easier to calm and rationalise with.

2012-10-30 Faith and puppy01