Dear Bella and DiDi,
Very soon, I will be going to Spain for summer vacation. I will be meeting my cousin, Olivia, also a Jack Russell Terrier, for the first time. I am worried that she won’t like me or that she’ll growl and try to nip at me. I’ve heard the humans mention that Olivia sometimes has a “mean streak.” I am very friendly so you can see why I am worried that Olivia might try to bite me. What can I do to avoid this from happening?
Thank you for your help!
We are so happy that you wrote to us about this situation. Unfortunately, we are used to dealing with unruly family members. We think every family has them. Or maybe it is just our family and we need an intervention? That is for another time.
The first time you meet Olivia, we suggest that you present her with a toy or a treat. Immediately, this will show her that you are happy to make her acquaintance and be in Spain. After this sweet gesture, we doubt she will growl or bite.
Next, when you are visiting Olivia in her house be sure to follow her lead. Let her know that you are an appreciative guest. If she wants you to wipe your paws before entering, then do it. If there is an “Olivia Only” section of the house then don’t go there.
Politely, suggest playing tug of war or going for a nice run around the house. If Olivia doesn’t want to participate, that is okay. At least you tried to inject some fun into the situation.
Know that the reason why Olivia is standoffish has nothing to do with you. If she tries to bite you, this is her acting out on something from her past. There could be any number of things that ignite Olivia’s “mean streak.” Maybe she is eating too much spicy Spanish food?
Try to enjoy your trip! If this advice doesn’t work then call us on our cell phone and we’ll come up with another plan.
Bella and DiDi
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