Much like last week, Holli was whiney and even had a barking spell during the first 20-30 minutes. After a pee break she was very good over the final 30 minutes. This has been a consistent trend the last few weeks. I explained to the client that her excitement of riding in the car may be causing her need to pee, which causes even more excitement and anxiousness. I advised the client to allow a pee break after a short time when they practice this week. Let's hope for even more progress next week!
“Some of our greatest historical and artistic treasures we place with curators in museums; others we take for walks.” ― Roger A. Caras
The clients reported that during the week there was some progress made, as they were able to better recognize Louie's body language and correct his behavior before it escalated to aggression. Tonight we increased the rate of reinforcement and during the hour long session Louie did not exhibit any aggressive behavior. In fact he was very much looking forward to the rewards he was receiving for his good behavior!
Tucker is a very exuberant black Labrador Retriever puppy that is learning his basic obedience. So far he has done very well at sit, down, come, wait, etc. We are now working on walking on a loose leash. We tried walking outside today but he was more interested in chasing the leaves! Once Tucker learns to focus he will do fine.
Began basic obedience training for little Bella, a Shar Pei/Cocker Spaniel puppy. We worked on sit, down, and come when called and she caught on very quickly. She has some fear issues, but by the end of the session she was willingly coming to me when called.
Had another session with Holli tonight. Holli is a Labrador Retriever who gets very excited in the car. Before we started her behavior modification she would bark nonstop for the duration of the ride. After several weeks of desensitization and counter-conditioning she is much better - alternating between some whining and quiet time. It may take a few more weeks until we finally reach our goal of a quiet, and calm, backseat passenger, but we will get there!
Met with Louie and his family this evening. Although Louie is a little Yorkie, when he feels threatened or insecure the terrier in him comes out in a big way! When it's bedtime little Louie feels like he has to protect his mom from anyone who gets near.
We made great progress tonight, teaching the family how to read Louie's body language in order to correct him before he escalates, while also addressing the family members' body language and energy in order to keep everyone calm.
“I do not concern myself with my inability to feel such comfort amidst humans (other than with very few friends and family), but, rather, am simply thankful that at least dogs exist, and I’m humbly aware of how much less a person I’d be – how less a human – if they did not exist.”
― Rick Bass, Colter: The True Story of the Best Dog I Ever Had
“When you have dogs, you witness their uncomplaining acceptance of suffering, their bright desire to make the most of life in spite of the limitations of age and disease, their calm awareness of the approaching end when their final hours come. They accept death with a grace that I hope I will one day be brave enough to muster.”
― Dean Koontz, A Big Little Life: A Memoir of a Joyful Dog
“I have found that when you are deeply troubled, there are things you get from the silent devoted companionship of a dog that you can get from no other source.”
― Doris Day
Jeff Dentler, CPDT-KA, CTDI