we met the pup today, at a "neutral location" (the home of one of the rescue folks). i have to admit that the first five minutes didn’t really go as i expected… she was *super* excited to meet new people, and was really kind of jumpy and hyper. i’ve read and heard so much about how easy-going she is that i didn’t really expect the activity, but since she’s really still a puppy, i do understand.
when i bent down to meet her, she mistook my hair for a great toy, and decided to jump up and bite at it (her foster dad has, basically, a shaved head, so i think dangling hair was a new thing for her), and in addition to my hair, she also got my chin. ouch. i said "gentle" and stood back up… but i didn’t want to freak out or be weird about it so i didn’t say anything. she did this once more during the first 5-10 minutes of the visit, and i again told her "gentle" and didn’t say anything. during the rest of the visit she showed absolutley no signs of mouthiness whatsoever. i saw her bite at one of the other women’s (much longer) hair, too, so i think she just thought it was some goofy toy.
i realized later that this was a really atypical dog meeting for me. i am so used to meeting dogs at the humane society, which is very much a one-on-one scenario, where i have a chance to interact with a dog alone and "feel out" his/her temperament. in this case i saw the dog on the internet, talked to some people about her via email over the course of a couple of weeks, and then finally met her in a house in another state with my husband and three strangers present. at the time it didn’t really occur to me as being weird, but afterward i realized that it was quite strange for me, and i think the situation–along with the slightly rough start–has been messing with my mind a little.
anyway, on to happier things. we got to spend over 90 minutes with her, and also her foster dad and two of the women who work for the rescue. after a little time, the doggie settled down considerably and played with her toy or came around for petting and snuggles. she is very people-oriented and food-motivated. anytime one of us would leave the room for something, she would follow cutely behind. she got a lot of treats at random times and was happy to perform for them. at one point i got up to use the bathroom and she followed me. i took that opportunity to spend some time alone with her in the hallway, and that was nice. it felt more like my usual interactions with new dogs, and i was very comfortable with her in that setting.
she looks a little different than we thought she would (she has freckles on her face and neck, which were not apparent in the earlier pictures we had seen… and she was also a lot thinner than my husband was expecting), but she is a cutie nonetheless. she knows a few commands already and looooves to cuddle her foster dad. at one point late in the visit he sat down on the couch, and she jumped right up, curled up next to him, put her front legs and face in his lap, and closed her eyes. adorable.
the next step, if we want to keep going, is to have them bring her up to do our "home visit" and introduce her to the cats. this would be a several-hour visit and could also turn into an overnight or a brief fostering situation if we’d like. now i just have to decide how i’m feeling about things. in a case of very unfortunate timing, i ran across a couple of sites i hadn’t seen before that got me all riled up again on the topic of dog/cat relations. i know i probably just need to chill, but as i’ve said before: i’m an over-analyzer. it’s tough.