Zoey, you are an off lead dog

I always post saying how Zoey has wonderful recall, stays nearby on walks and is a very gentle, friendly girl.

Then I go on to say that we have to walk her on lead / longline, because she’s a bull breed and in our area especially they are blamed for EVERYTHING.

Zoey has been attacked by dogs half a dozen times in this area, most of them off lead, and she has never fought back…she’s never even reacted! But you can bet if something did happen it would be her fault 😦

But since getting Raiden I’ve got to thinking: why the hell should we walk our dog on lead (when she has better recall than 99.9% of the dogs around here!) just because other people and their dogs are shit heads?!

So screw it. Zoey is good off the lead and she enjoys it, so as of now and in suitable areas, she is an off lead dog 🙂

To qualify for off lead fun times, the walk has to be:
–> In either an enclosed area with good fencing, or very far from roads and livestock
–> Be open so that we can see if other people or dogs are approaching, and we always have time to call Zoey

That might sound simple, but where we live there are livestock *everywhere*, and the fencing is always crap. So crap that the sheep and even cows often escape and wander the roads and public footpaths…good job farmers :/

Even so we have found a few walks, and yesterday Zoey got to go off lead at the beach for the FIRST TIME EVER!


I will post more soon. I took some beautiful photos of the sky at sunset, so I will try share them tomorrow.

*below is a rant, stop reading now if you don’t want to listen to me whine*


The past few weeks have been horrific. I feel like I am being mentally tortured. If I could click my fingers and be done with it all, I would.

Alongside that about two weeks ago we forgot to lock the door of  Zoey’s pen, and she pushed her way out.

She was actually really good home alone (we were only gone an hour, but still!) – she chewed and destroyed a bag of cable ties and a plastic bird. But considering there were shoes, notebooks, blankets and a hundred other things lying about, we were proud of her.

That night at bedtime Zoey screamed and tried to open the door again, but after a while (that felt like a year) she gave up, and then went back to normal in the pen.

Fast forward to about five days ago, when she completely destroyed the pen and broke out. She pulled the bars off the panel and created a gap she could fit through.

The bars on the pen were much flimsier than on a dog crate, and as Zoey has used a crate up until three months ago, we switched back to a dog crate. Put her away with a Kong and Nylabones as usual, left for an hour, and came back to this:


The chewed up ‘bits’ are from my beloved armchair that we bought a couple weeks ago. She could fit her head out the hole she made in the door and had a whale of a time destroying the nearest thing to her…she has never chewed furniture before -__-

So you know, along with feeling suicidal, psychotic symptoms and all the other crap at the moment, Zoey has now decided she can and will break out of anywhere we leave her.

I don’t even think it’s separation anxiety / anxiety, because she happily goes into the pen, is doing her Kong as we leave, and when we got back she lay in her crate and chewed a Nylabone. No distress.

We talked very seriously about what we could do, what our plan of action should be, how we could help her.

We actually discussed rehoming her, we really did. Would it be best for her to find a new home? If we kept her, would we be able to find something to keep her safe whilst left, and would I mentally be able to crate train her from scratch?

We spent six hours reinforcing the pen this weekend (that post is to come) and for now I am housebound with her, as she can’t be left alone.

The issue is, even if we do find something that can hold her (such as the reinforced pen), leaving her on her own right now could do more harm than good. On three occasions she has broken free, so she will be more determined to do it than ever, and if we shoved her in a pen and she couldn’t get out, it could cause her a lot of anxiety.

I’m so scared she’ll hurt herself trying to break out or, once out, eat something – ANYTHING – that could hurt her or cause a blockage. So at the moment I can’t leave the house unless it’s with Zoey and my partner…

At three years old we are having to re-crate train the dog that took to the crate like a duck to water. Puppy Zoey loved her crate from day one, and could be left alone within a week. Who knows how long it will take this time.

I should add, we did not consider rehoming Zoey lightly. If I were well now, we wouldn’t have seriously considered it at all.

But the fact is I’m not well, I’m really really ill. And now I can’t leave the house and my partner has to leave me alone to walk our other dogs, which is really not safe and which our Dr had told us not to do.

It also means if we need to go to A&E (which we did the other night) we can’t, because we have nowhere safe to put Zoey.

I’ve contacted companies to ask if their kennels would contain Zoey (they make proper kennels for rescue centres, breeders etc), but of course they cost £200 – £500, and for no reason payments we are supposed to be getting have stopped in the past month. We didn’t even know we weren’t being paid until a bank statement came through.

I am sorry to have ranted. I know my life is bliss compared to many others, but my brain doesn’t work properly and I can’t control my moods.

Bad things are supposed to come in threes, right? Then why do our lives just constantly get worse…


4 thoughts on “Zoey, you are an off lead dog

  1. When did you visit your doctor? Is he a good one? Maybe, he could do more for you – because you need it and you deserve it! Do not forget that you are a valuable and talented person who is loved-loved-loved unconditionally by a lot of human and animal souls!

    • Thank you so much, this message made me feel like I had been hugged 🙂

      I saw the Dr about two weeks ago. He was really good but unfortunately my illness is outside his field of expertise, so he doesn’t have the power to prescribe medications that might help or change my diagnosis…only a psychiatrist can do that, and even though our Dr has put through an urgent referral for me, it could be weeks or months until the appointment…

      Thank you, really. I appreciate your comment; you are wonderful 🙂

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