Tuesday, July 5, 2011

desmond & fireworks

i am happy to report that desmond did not go totally berserk during the fireworks show in our village. we took him down to the waterfront, where they set the fireworks off. there were other dogs around, including one who lives on our block, and i was hoping he'd feel comfortable around them since they seemed fine with everything going on. and he was doing OK for a while. then when he realized the booming wasn't going to stop, he started to back up into the people behind us. we promptly took him away from everyone, down the block. 

we found a little spot where he could lean on a fence, and we crouched down next to him and covered/rubbed his ears, while we watched what we could see of the fireworks from behind a building. desmond definitely wasn't super thrilled to be there, but he seemed like he was more or less doing all right. when the show was over, we went back to our yard with some friends and family, and that's when desmond let us know he wasn't feeling this whole gunpowder thing. 

he no longer wanted to stay outside with us. instead, he wanted to go lie down in his bed in our bedroom in the dark alone. it seemed really weird to us, since he usually doesn't prefer to be in the house when we're outside--never mind that he would be basically hidden in a dark cave--but we knew it was possible he'd want to run and hide, so we let him do his thing. 

at some point later on, he came back outside but rather quickly changed his mind and headed back to his bed. still, there are a lot of more serious reactions he could have had. this was on saturday. two days to go...

sunday's rain put the kibosh on our plans to go upstate and visit nala & her parents, so we had a low-key day at home and hoped that the rain would deter some people from exploding stuff that night. it didn't. but desmond seemed to be pretty much fine with that. i mean, he definitely noticed the noise, but he didn't run away to any dark depths of our house or otherwise act strange. not bad. one day to go...

monday we went to visit cosmo & his parents, and almost immediately upon arrival desmond wanted to go inside. but we made him stay out with us, since nothing was going on, and we were hoping he might want to go swimming in the pool. verdict? yes. however, he wanted to get out of the pool shortly after going in and swimming around a little bit. was he cold again? or just uneasy? not sure. when cosmo came out a little while later and started swimming, desmond wanted to get back in the water, so in he went. he was so excited to go swim with tiny cosmo, that he didn't realize how close he was to the little dog and one of his doggie paddle strokes pushed cosmo down into the water. a scary moment for everyone--including desmond, who immediately wanted to get out of the water--but cosmo was absolutely fine and just kept on swimming and smiling.

right after desmond almost drowned cosmo, there were little cracks and snaps and very small booms going on around the neighborhood. all desmond wanted to do was hide in aunt jenn & uncle sean's bathroom. he had absolutely no problem hanging out in there--even when people needed to use the facilities (thank goodness they didn't mind his company)--but really did not want to come outside again after that. he also didn't really want to eat, the poor guy. when we dragged him outside and were packing up to leave the party, i thought he was going to run out and start driving the car himself. he wanted to GO. meanwhile, shortly after we got home, seemingly everyone in our neighborhood started setting off fireworks. i'm sure he was like, "OH GREAT!" 

we actually had a fantastic view of a bunch that were going off in the park next door, so i stood inside our back door and watched, thrilled to finally be getting to see something good. joey stayed in the living room with desmond where our A/C and loud television drowned out the noise fairly successfully, except for the really loud stuff. desmond was tired and pretty much just slept in a chair, occasionally looking up when a boom took place. 

maybe we can try to desensitize him to the noises, because 4th of july is my favorite holiday, and i'd really hate to have to leave him home to suffer alone or to have to miss fireworks from now on, but until we can do that, i think we may have to start going camping for this holiday, so we can all hide in the quiet mountains.
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