John is seeing a little progress from Daisy. She is coming along very slowly.
We, too, have a puppy mill dog. She’s 6, a 5lb. Yorkie with 4 teeth. We think they bred her constantly without giving her the right nutrition. We got her the middle of Dec and, like your dog, she was scared to death and took off running whenever we got close. I convinced my husband to ignore her while she was getting used to us. She has a bed back in the corner by the fireplace and that was her security. In May we put a harness on her with a leash she dragged. That was the only way we could catch her. We had to be quick stepping on the leash, too!! Once we caught her we loved her up and then put her back down. She would follow us around the house and hover in the background, ready to bolt if we made the wrong kind of move. The middle of June she seemed to decide that we’ll “do” and did a complete transformation. If I say we’re going to bed, she beats us to it. She wants all the loving she can get, too. She’s also gone from a quiet dog to being territorial about our house. We love her to death and agree that getting her was the best thing, ever. Her feet were pretty worn from being in the wire cage and for awhile they weren’t sure that she wouldn’t have walking problems. To go from the cowering little dog she was to the maniac that races around the house hopping and jumping is pure joy. I think she wants to play, but it’s hard to do with no teeth. I went through dozens of different types of dog food, like you, trying to find something that she could eat and, also, liked. Have patience, because it will sure be worth it in the end.
John, I love that your family adopted Daisy. Please don’t use the term rescued dog always tho’. Daisy is quite obviously a product of a puppy mill. She will eventually emerge from within but it will take a great deal of quiet patience on everyone’s part. By saying rescue dog (even though she is) it may keep others from rescuing a dog from a shelter. Every animal I have ever owned have been rescues-one was just like Daisy in actions. Love ya! for being there for her.
I belong to a collie rescue (MWCR.org), and have “fostered” many collies over the years. About 6 yrs ago, we fostered Bobbie, a smallish male collie who was a stray. Bob was terribly shy and scared, and mostly hid in a corner of our bedroom; he was also terrified of storms and loud/strange noises. He was a complete basket case. We had a couple people come out and look at him for adoption, but all he did was hide from them. We quickly determined that he was unadoptable, so we decided to keep him. We didn’t think he could bark for over a month because he was completely silent. He did, however, play with our other collies and liked people that he became familiar with. One day, playing with our other dogs, he barked!
Over the years he has gotten much better, but he will never be “normal.” But we are so happy we kept him as he is loving and affectionate. He is much more social now, but still prefers his little bedroom nest when strangers come over. I commend you for taking your dog into your home, but your expectation shouldn’t be too high. Just love him and accept him/her and over time you’ll find the love returned.