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Meggy: A Progress Report


As most of you know by now, we got a dog last May. Her name is Meggy and she is, as my partner says, “a purebred Hungarian street mongrel”. It is now exactly four months since she became part of the family and next month she will be two years old. A good time to fill you in on the progress she has made, I thought.

When Meggy came to us, she weighed just 11.4 kg, was afraid of her own shadow, afraid of all noises (even the sound of a teaspoon clinking ona saucer would alarm her!), wolfed her food down as if there was no tomorrow and retreated to the bedroom when we had guests. She did not bark, cowered even when she was being praised and looked at all new things in our neighbourh­ood with mistrust and fear. The first two weeks were very demanding. She peed and pooped a couple of times in the flat, especially on this very thick new rug we had bought recently. Once she settled in, though, this stopped as we finally discovered how long it took for her digestive system to process food. The rug, unfortunat­ely, had to go. Having received all the necessary shots and having been dewormed twice, we still decided to take her to the vet. Although

looking generally healthy, we noticed that the whites of her eyes were slightly reddish. The vet proceeded to do a bioscan on her and amongst the things we found out was that she was allergic to most standard dog food. I was a bit sceptical of this process as it is not scientific­ally proven, but I talked to my doctor who told me that it is even used on humans with good results. It is slightly expensive, but now I would recommend it to any dog owner who wants to know if their dog is completely healthy. We donated all our tins of standard dog food to the animal shelter in Hallein from where we got Meggy and went out to buy her what the vet had recommende­d, namely: turkey, salmon, rabbit and reindeer. The first step from a rescue dog to a diva was taken!

I had bought her a number of toys and even an orthopaedi­c cushion, which she did use at the beginning but which was later completely ignored when our bed was discovered. There she made herself comfortabl­e, like the little tsarina that she had become, on expensive red cotton blankets specifical­ly bought for her (it turned out she was also allergic to fake fur and synthetic materials). Step two to diva status was achieved! The toys were mostly ignored as looking for treats wrapped in old socks or bandages became her favourite pastime. One major problem we had was that she did not like travelling by car. She would often throw up in our car, possibly due to some traumatic experience in her young life. At first, we got her some drops to help settle her stomach. Then we started taking short rides to the dog park to convince her that car rides lead to something positive. The dog park was a blessing. Here, she learned to socialize with other dogs and dog owners. Slowly, her character came out. She grew more confident, ran and played with bigger dogs until she became the animator of the park. Owners of lazy or inactive dogs were glad when she was there, because she would chase their dogs around.

Now Meggy weighs 13.1 kg, loves to cuddle and have her belly rubbed and has learnt to sit and to lie down. Fetch and come are to follow. She still wolfs down her food, won’t bark but growls if anyone but us tries to catch a glimpse of her in the bedroom. The diva likes her privacy. Elsewhere, she throws herself at everyone’s ankles in exchange for some cuddles. Evidently, the lady is a tramp! More updates to follow …

 ?? ?? Michael Darmanin
Michael Darmanin

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