I adopted Cody last January, when it was cold and dark and dreary nearly all the time. It was rough going at first. I didn't trust to leave him outside of a crate during the day while I worked and was told he was crate-trained so I figured it was something he was used to.
I've learned a lot about the poor guy in the 10 months I've had him. He doesn't like his crate covered; he's a smart little guy; and he loves to be loved.
There's a lot I can never know about the first four years of Cody's life. Staff at Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control told me that they were told – he was an owner surrender – that he can escape from a wire crate. I keep him in what's called an air-crate. I can see that he has either broken or lost many of his teeth, but I don't know how.
He has separation anxiety. It didn't long for me to figure that out. There's not much I can do around my apartment without him on my heels. I knew that, have known it from the start and am largely OK with it. He's getting to the point where I can leave him alone while I run out for a few hours, and he doesn't do any damage to the apartment, so I think he's learning he can trust me.
In the last couple of days I've learned something new about my puppy: He's afraid of, or anxious in, the dark.
When I came home from work Monday, I heard it, the loud banging on the crate door. When I opened the door to the room where I keep Cody's crate, I realized why the loud banging: The room was dark.
Later that night, the poor guy had licked one of his paws – which he does out of anxiety – so much that it was sopping wet and had a red spot.
I wish there was more I could do to ease the anxiety, but I think he's coming along.
Tall Tails guest blogger Joyce McCartney is assistant Metro editor at The Journal Gazette.