Last November my husband bought a 'really good' hound dog from some fellas 'up North'.
The seller said she may be a bit shy but she'd come around in no time.
Belle came home. She is a pretty black and tan hound who did act as if she had been beaten. She hunched and turned away her head when we approached her and pet her.
After a couple of weeks we took her hunting.
Belle just went home and we spent the next two weeks trying to figure out how to catch her. She would slink away and run but keep us in sight.
Hubby and I discussed her quite a bit. He even called the person who sold her to him. That person never returned a phone call.
We did catch her and tie her up. We spent time each day with her, petting her, talking to her...yet she would only offer us her side to pet, never her head.
I've never seen such fear in a dog. And no, not the kind of fear that will get you bitten like other dogs. Just fear and 'want'. She fears touch but wants human touch.
We found out that she adores Morris and loves to play with him.
We also found out that she is a Houdini at slipping her collar and unbuckling her collar.
So now we have Belle, the yard/farm dog. She never goes far, she always watches for us to come out.
She plays with Morris and has her feed bowl and water bowl nearby.
Last night I took a walk with Morris to check on the mares and mules that we'd moved onto summer pasture.
I sat down to photograph some ox eyed daisies. Morris milled around sniffing.
As I was swatting gnats and trying to compose a photo, I heard a dog breathing behind me. Morris was in front of me.
I turned slightly and there was Belle. Sitting and watching.
I feel pretty honored that she has started to follow me around. Never closer than about 5 feet away though. That is a huge improvement.
And of course she adores being with Morris.
So Belle has become our 'glue' dog. She follows us doing chores, fixing fences, and anything else we do. She is like a shadow.
She still doesn't trust us enough to let us just pet her. Other than that she leads a pretty fine life.
She lays in the sun, she has her own dog house ... and she loves to go on walks with us.
My hope is that whoever beat the daylights out of her gets their comeuppance and that she eventually will come around.
Yesterday was the first time that she came and stayed close enough so that I could take photos of her.
We call her the Spook Dog.
I've grown quite fond of her and enjoy having her company such that it is.