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How Much is the Doggy in the Interview?

June 2, 2008

I survived the phone interview on Friday for the Golden rescue group! It was about an hour and covered a lot of the ground that I had answered in the application. The main topic of conversation was the kind of temperment that we want in a Golden and how we plan to introduce a dog into the Kitty Domain that is our home. As it is, Fluffy and the Bad One reign supreme over their 2500 square feet. How will they react to a pooch invading their territory?

They are not without experience on this one. A few years ago, we hosted Sweetie’s parents’ dogs for a month while his parents were traveling out of the country. Granted these were two mutts who collectively weighed about 40 lbs, but after the first few days (and swats), a detente was established. They have been exposed to larger dogs, but only for short periods of time and usually weren’t particularly happy about it.

The key is to get a Golden who has a low prey drive or that is completely uninterested in cats so that the kitties don’t spend too much of their day being chased around the house by a large slobbering dog. The kitties do chase each other around the house, but that’s different than being pursued by a dog!

We also talked about how I work from home so it is really important to get a dog who doesn’t bark too much. Sweetie also isn’t too fond of loud dogs so that was another reason behind that one.

Really the hardest part of the interview came with a question I hadn’t been anticipating (but totally should have seen coming): how are you going to discipline the dog? I thought about it for minute – and totally thought back to all of the episodes of It’s Me or the Dog I had watched – and answered that most behaviors that we consider “bad”, like peeing in the house, usually have some reason behind them, so I would find out what that reason was and try to fix the underlying problem. After that I drew a blank – what was she looking for? I asked her if she could give me an example and she basically said that they were looking to see if I was someone who would use negative reinforcement rather than positive reinforcement. I answered most definitely that I would do positive reinforcement!

We also talked about how taking the dog to obedience training would help cut down on unwanted behavior. She asked if I would be willing to take the dog to training and I said absolutely. It is as much about training the dog as it is about training me since I’ve never had a dog before (no, not even when I was a kid – my first pets in my life are the beasties we have now). It will be a learning adventure for us both! And, I think it would be a lot of fun.

After the interview, I also had a good talk with Sweetie. I’ve been driving this particular train and I wanted to make sure he was still on board. I was very adamant that once we get to meet the dogs, he would have to agree to get one or else it is a no-go. This is a decision that we are both going to have to live with, so we both need to make it. He was ok with that, so I feel good that we are on the same page.

So, we once again wait. Although, this time I’m not nearly as impatient. We’ve got the process started and that’s good for now. We will either hear back very soon or not for a while. We will hear back very soon from the adoption coordinator if there are “issues” with our application. Otherwise, we won’t hear anything for a few weeks when we hear from a volunteer to set up a home visit. So far, we haven’t heard anything – no news is good news!
image: Valley Vistas

5 Comments leave one →
  1. JellyBelly permalink
    June 4, 2008 2:01 am

    i think it’s so great that the agency is being so thorough!

    i used to foster little kittens for the humane society when i was in university and it made me so sad at how unprepared and uneducated people where when taking animals into their homes.

    goldens are so beautiful! i can’t wait to see the photos of your new doggy!

  2. Emily (Apron Strings) permalink
    June 4, 2008 3:43 am

    Woohoo! Glad you survived the interview. Can’t wait to see what happens next …

  3. seriously? permalink
    June 4, 2008 5:49 pm

    Congrats on passing the doggie interview process. Dogs are joys to have but thank god they are so cute because they can be crazy sometimes.

    I think goldens are great dogs (I am allergic so can’t have a shedder). I hope the dog comes quickly.

    Remember we need pics as soon as you get a dog!

    Doggie classes are great. I grew up with dogs but I never was the one responsible for training or anything so I go with The Riley. We did puppy class and now basic.

  4. Rebecca permalink
    June 5, 2008 5:56 am

    Congrats! Yes, working from home, it is very important to get a quiet pup. I’ve had some really embarrassing conference calls thanks to my roommate’s dog.

  5. MrsTSalazar permalink
    June 5, 2008 10:56 am

    What a strenuous interview process! And how exciting! What age of Golden are you hoping for?

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