Meet Lulu. She’s a 9 month old shiba inu. Adler and I adopted her from PAWS located in Murfreesboro, TN almost 3 weeks ago. (You may have seen the post.) Adler has named her Lulu after a rare Rx7 race car.

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She warmed up to us so much. She now wags her tail to greet us when we come home and she snuggles up on the couch.

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She will play with us outside and she loves to explore the outdoors. I’m planning a little hiking trip with her. She is very intelligent. I’ve been able to teach her name, train her on entering and exiting the house, and to go to her crate or come to me by command. All with only praise, without the use of treats or food reinforcement. I would love to start on some other things with her but its difficult to reinforce and train without the lure of food… at least for me. However, she still won’t take bits of kibble, treats, or even bits of chicken from my hand yet.

I’m beginning to think she may have been abused and not only neglected. Not only because of the food, she also will not go into the bedrooms no matter the coaxing. She will come to me, but the second I stop petting her, she immediately heads for the door. She also will not play indoors with us, or with her toys. The most she’ll do is chew on them in her crate. So I bought her some interactive toys, and I bought myself a book that goes into even more detail on shibas.

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I read it last night. It had some fantastic information, but it solidified my suspicions of abuse. Shibas have a very long memory and negative experiences stick with them. So if she was punished for playing or going in bedrooms it’s going to be long journey to reverse that. But it’ll be worth it for her to feel free and happy in her own home.

I’m hoping the toys will help encourage her to play. The green ball is for large dry treats for her to nibble at. The black one is a kong. I’m going to put wet food inside with just a few bits of cheese or sardines. Then I’ll freeze it and ta-da hours fun and surprises. The red one is good for several things, it will help keep her teeth clean. There are ridges we’re I can put peanut butter as a treat, and one end has a hole through it for stick treats. These should help her understand play time is fun and acceptable. X-)

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I bought the toys and the book from amazon.com. But I’ve also recently discovered an app: wag.com. It is for all pets, not just dogs. They sell almost everything; food, treats, toys, food bowls, collars and leashes, and other accessories.

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