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Our Australian Cattle Dog is about 10 months old, we adopted her at 8 weeks, last year. She's a great dog and I think we've done everything right so far, especially with her breed (lots of activity!). She is great around everyone, and 99% well behaved despite still being a youngster.

Our routine, for reference:
I usually take her to work with me - she naps in the office most of the morning and at lunch we either go for a walk or head to the dog park for a major fetch session (she loves playing fetch), after that I'll feed her, and she naps again until my wife comes to pick her up mid-afternoon (after she gets off work). So basically she's with someone most of the day, she does ok on her own at home, but this seems to work fine for us currently.

Last night I was playing a little fetch with her in the house just to make sure she got her fill of action/play for the day. She's gotten more vigorous when playing over the last few months, and last night she smacked her head pretty good on a door while running after her toy. She's done this kind of thing before, i.e. keeping her eyes on the ball/toy and not where she's going, and bumps her head/etc. on something, and usually it doesn't faze her.

Right after this happened, her ears went back and tail down (still wagging a little) and she went into a hunched pose, like she was caught being bad, or was being scolded or yelled at, which we've almost never had to do, honest. My guess is that she thinks the impact from the door was me hitting her, which I've never done. For the rest of the night she seemed scared/timid, was looking away sadly a lot and did not want to be around us.....weird. We tried a lot of things, but she just wanted to be off by herself. At bedtime she went into her crate normally just like any other night.

This morning, she seemed normal at our first greeting of the day, very happy to see me and wagging all over, lying in her back for belly rubs, etc, completely normal. She still was acting a little timid/scared (ears back, tail down but wagging a little) but not as bad as last night. We did our usual morning routine w/ a short walk, breakfast, etc. and then went to work, so she's napping in the office right now.

I think this will wear off eventually but it's kind of a bummer that she thinks I'm the perpetrator....any thoughts or opinions are welcome, thanks for reading all this.
 

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It might be she injured herself in a way you can't see. I think you can never be too careful, especially when something happens that changes how your dog acts. I would personally take her to the vet, but that's just me.
 

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Hi. How is your dog doing now? Is she back to her normal happy self? Hope so!

I have a very sensitive shy blue heeler (ACD) mix now named Gracie and prior to her, I had Athena, also a heeler mix. These doggies can be so sensitive. So brilliant, so fast learning, so incredibly intuitive, so amazing, so loyal. But sensitive. At least in my experience.

I bet your dog didn't think the pain came from you. Not at all. She probably just got really startled this time and maybe got spooked or a bit unsure of herself. My Gracie sometimes wants comfort when she is feeling off, but sometimes she will stay a bit by herself until she is back on track with whatever was worrying her. Maybe it is similar with your dog?

Heck in the beginning, whenever I stepped on shy fearful cautious Gracie's pretty little toes by accident, even lightly, as she was underfoot a bunch, she would get so freaked out that she would lunge up at us instantly growling or barking. I would always comfort her by saying I was sorry and then I would exchange a kiss with her (our pattern) to show her that we have mutual trust between us and that I would never ever hurt her.

Yesterday I stepped on her foot (accidentally of course) and now, no over the top reaction but a tiny step back (normal dog reaction)--so vastly different from the old days. I still told her I was sorry, we did our lil kiss, I gave her some petting, and then I gave her some nice treats as an apology:)

Hope all is well at your home with your dog!!
 
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