A year in the life of our Miss Riley

Pack Dynamics

on May 22, 2015

When you have dogs, you become part of the pack and pack dynamics apply. My husband is the Alpha, He Who Must Be Obeyed. I am the Omega, the pack member who seems the weakest, but is actually a trusted caregiver. Our roles were very apparent today in how we got Riley (who defies all pack dynamics herself and is, in general, the Queen of Everything) to eat.

In a few intervals from morning to early afternoon, I brought Riley’s food from the freezer, set it down in front of her, and coaxed her into eating. She took morsels readily from my hand, and occasionally was eager enough to dive into the bowl for a few bites before she started looking for something in my hand again. End result: complete meal eaten.

This evening, my husband fed her. She barked as is her wont in the evening feeding time, but tried to do the sniff-and-walk-away move she’s patented in recent weeks. Alpha stood behind her and said, “Go on, eat.” And stood there implacable until she finished all but about two bites. Even then, he took up the bowl, followed her into the living room and got her to eat a little more.

Coaxing or command, whichever works. She’s got food in her, so that’s a good thing.



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