Mollie has been a bit of a weirdo the last few days. Two nights ago she started being possessive over food that wasn't even hers and downright neurotic about the damn rawhides littered around the house. I finally took the last bit of the one she was obsessing over and threw it out in the outside garbage can. I thought she was going to lose her mind trying to figure out where I hid her precious. She also has been getting in her crate to sleep on her own (which she hasn't done in the past unless she was nervous or scared) and wouldn't come upstairs with us at bedtime. I convinced her to come up with us last night and she planted herself between us on th bed, where she stayed all night long. At least she kept Rich and I from beating each other up in our sleep.
The dog trainer this morning suggested that she was just getting to an age where she was testing her boundaries and her "place in the pack." She stressed that it's very important in times like this that we continue with her training and remain consistent with her structure. The cynic in me thinks she tells that to everyone, though, if it means they'll keep bringing their dogs in for day care everyday.
I asked Mollie last night if she was upset about something and wasn't telling us. She didn't want to talk about it, but I think I figured it out. I think that yesterday was her birthday and she was upset that no one got her any presents. Since she came to the SPCA as a stray, no one knows her official birthday and we've been trying to guess her age for several months other than just "young." So I think her birthday was yesterday and she had hoped we would throw her a party or at least get her a card and when the day ended and nothing had happened, she got all morose. In psychology terms, we call that "scripting," Mollie.
I tried to explain to her that our family doesn't make a big deal about birthdays and we're more in the camp that treats people (and dogs) well all year long instead, but she still looked a little mopey. So I sang her Happy Birthday last night at 11:57pm before we went to bed (while Rich rolled his eyes at me). She seemed content and has been much more mellow today.
She's still lying in her crate in the dark, but Rich says this is the dog equivalent to going up to her room and listening to loud music while putting on dark eyeliner. I tried to tell him she's just a dog and she doesn't wear make-up, but he can be silly like that.