Blowing Bubbles with My Dog

Recent events have me, like many of us, feeling untethered. I was making good progress on my depression. I was getting out more, volunteering, talking to people at the dog park, all things I can’t do right now. It’s an additional element of the pandemic that sprinkles more discouragement on top of the physical and financial fears that so many are facing globally. So, while I don’t feel like I’m making much progress, I’m proud to say that Stella has come a long way.

When I adopted her, Stella had a LOT of fears. Bags of potting soil, kites, people wearing big hats, bicycles, snowmen, car rides, piles of rocks, the list goes on. For the most part, she’s faced them all. The neighbor’s animatronic Halloween decorations were just too much for her and we had to cross the street, but those are meant to be scary, after all. She tends to be afraid of things that look unusual (to her) or regular things that are in unexpected places. But as long as I put on an air of confidence and stroll up to the scary thing, she can pluck up the courage to approach and give it a good sniff. Our most recent endeavor has been… bubbles.

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At first, she was uneasy. She backed away from them and skirted around their path to get away. Then, she crept up to one that had landed on the ground without popping. She leeeeaned in close, and- pop! Her head flinched back and I could almost see the gears turning as she tried to comprehend where it had gone.

A few more bubble-blowing sessions and we have successfully conquered her fear.

She is now completely indifferent to bubbles. No joy or delight whatsoever. She can be so playful when it comes to other games, but she just doesn’t care at all when it comes to bubbles. They’re almost an annoyance to her, popping on her fur while she’s guarding the backyard. I mean c’mon, bubbles are the most frivolous, fun thing ever! Ah well, I’d call that at least halfway successful.

 

 

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