I hope someone here can help me with what seems to me to be a rather trivial problem, given all the serious ailments, etc. going on with the doodles around here, but I'm afraid of making this worse.
Our home has been plagued with a creepy, scary steep, curving set of stairs to the 2nd floor for years and we have finally undertaken its renovation to make it safe for DH and DD to navigate. The new set of stairs was "roughed in" with plywood yesterday, leaving no backs on the risers so that you can see right through the stairs as you go up. It's going to take much finishing work, which could take a week or more, until they are done.
Last night, Sadie would not go up the stairs, even when I placed pieces of dog biscuits on the individual steps. She looked at me as if I'd lost my mind as if to say, "what, do you really think I'm apt to crawl up that contraption for biscuits? Really? Ah, no." She would not budge, even with my coaxing, cajoling or insisting so I finally scooped her up in my arms, all 55 lbs, (feeling her little heart stuttering in fright) and carried her up. It was a traumatic experience! This a.m., we both rose to the alarm clock and she trotted down the hall behind me until she saw the stairs, at which point, she bolted back into the bedroom and curled up next to DH in bed and stayed there for another hr. Finally, knowing that she has to go out first thing in the a.m., I went back upstairs, coaxed her out of the bedroom, shut the door, blocking her escape. At the top of the stairs, she flatly refused to be picked and up and not only sat down, but laid down and glared at me as if to say, "if you think I'm doing that again today, you have lost your mind." I took her collar and guided her to the edge, where she screwed up her courage, and like a flash of lightening, bolted down the stairs (none too gracefully) and all but flew into her crate. Again coaxed her to the door and out for her morning break. I even sat down on the bottom stair so she could come over for a skritch and hug, NOPE, no way, no how was she coming near me or that contraption.
Any suggestions on how to make this transition a bit simpler for Sadie? Crating at night isn't an option. She has spent the last 5 years sleeping either on the foot of our bed. Crating at nite only results in barking, whining, squeaking, and, yes, screaming in the crate. Sadie, spoiled??? Nah.
Seriously tho', I can't imagine picking up a 55 lb, squirming, scaredy cat dog every night until she finally figures out that she has no choice. I don't want her to scared witless everytime someone goes to the stairs either. Suggest away, I can't see me snoozing away on the couch to sooth the jagged nerves of a spoiled Sadie-dog. I love her and all, but there's a limit! Thanks in advance for any thoughts.
I'm keeping my fingers crossed and prayers said for all the doodles who are having a tough time right now, as well as their doodle families.
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