My sweet sweet dog has returned from her 3 week boot camp away with a dog trainer. She had a lot of issues but the main ones were:
- Jumping on guests upon entry
- Barking at stranger or other dogs on walks and in the car
- Whining whenever someone left the room
- Anxiety in the crate if we had to go do an errand
She was just all sorts of crazy but overall a really good and affectionate dog. We saw video progress reports of her on the trainer’s Facebook page. There is a video of her walking on the leash the first week and again walking on a leash during the second week where she had clearly learned the “heel” position (right next to the handler going at the same speed). Walking with us is important, but what’s more important is just her behavior in outside of the house situations…
When Jermaine brought her back, we went on a brief 20ish minute walk with her and he taught us how to handle her and use commands during the walking. It was really good luck that we also walked by a little girl on a razor scooter thingy and before Mia would have lost her mind over that – barking, jumping, trying to run to the girl. This time she looked…thought about barking – there were maybe even a teeny tiny start of a bark type noise, and then I corrected her and we continued on our way without incident. This same thing happened when we walked by another dog and stranger. She looked and acknowledged them, thought about barking but didn’t, she was corrected, and we kept going. When I say that I’m correcting her, I’m just giving her a short tug on the leash or saying “Hey” to get her focus back. Jermaine was so great with her, we were both really pleased with the result knowing that she was treated very well and he really did seem awfully sad to see her go. We are going to have him back over when we get a treadmill so Mia can learn to walk on it to get more exercise : ) — not all dogs need this, but we have a very high energy dog.
Later this evening, Abe got Mia to sit – down (lay down) – and then stay for a good 10-15 seconds before she wanted to get up and look for him. I was able to get her to come – sit – down – and then stay for a good 1 minute while I walked away and hid in another room. When I got back, she was laying right where I left her and didn’t move until I gave her release word. If you have a psychopath dog, then I’m sure you understand what a major breakthrough that is! She’s obedient and she understands that we are in charge and she no longer runs this ship. We will need to practice these commands on a daily basis with her to keep her sharp.
I’m so happy that she’s back and our family is together again! Abe will need to do some traveling at some point and it’s so much better having her here with me. Sure it’s more work to do it all alone, but I’d much rather have good company and do a few extra things around the house. Tomorrow, we test out her doggy seat belt!