What People Don’t Understand About Having an Awkward Dog

Opinion of Maddie Foerster

I have the cutest dog. Or one of the cutest dogs. When we decided to rescue a puppy, we saw him on the rescue website and instantly fell in love. He has the most expressive eyes, floppy ears, and a black nose to offset the rest of his tan fur. We figured by rescuing him at only three months, he would have minimal baggage like many of the dogs that are up for  adoption.
But oh, were we wrong.
When we rescued Max, he was only 15 pounds, timid, shivering, and not only mentally scarred, but also physically, having burn marks on his two back paws.
Since he is so adorable, when we first brought him home, everyone wanted to see him. I mean, he is literally the cutest dog I, and most people claim, have ever seen. Since he looks so different and is a mixed bag of breeds, people often also inquire about what he is.
But what we soon discovered was that Max was traumatized. He loved us after some time, but it took weeks for him to start to show his  personality.
While most puppies are eager to explore the world, Max was reserved around most people, especially ones he had never met before.
On walks, many people ask to pet him and reach their hand out in hopes of him being affectionate, which to their dismay, he instead shies away, tail between legs. We then have to awkwardly explain that he is timid and is afraid of most things: cars, trucks, any loud  noise.
But what we can’t really explain is that Max is awkward because of what his life entailed before he found us and was placed in his forever home.
Max will never be one of those dogs that is eager to meet another person. He didn’t even understand that he was supposed to wag his tail when he wanted to show that he was happy until he turned one. There’s no other way to put it than he is socially awkward.
Sure, I may have the cutest dog, but don’t ask to pet him. The answer will be no. Not because of you, or that he’s mean. He is simply, just plain awkward.

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