MemberJuly 24, 2010 at 8:56 pm80
Not only is your information SO helpful, you do such a great job of organizing it so that it’s dummied down enough for “we non-trainers”. I shared it with my husband and he was extremely interested in going into your site to study its contents. Up until this time, I have been taking the bull by the horns, with him carrying through with my requests/suggestions. I’m glad you could inspire him to be an active student. 🙂
Moxie is going to stay right where he is. We’re in it for the long term. We have been working very hard to learn/train in a manner that leaves no question who is in charge. I am grateful that Moxie has come into our life, so that we can fully appreciate the changes that need to take place, if we intend to continue with our rescue efforts. For the past 32 years we have always rescued Bedlingtons and Bichons. Up until now, the focus of our efforts has always been on socialization and basic obedience. Our dogs have been puppy mill products or those who have been rescued from neglect/abuse. We have been fortunate in that none have had aggression issues…UNTIL Moxie. He has taught us a lot about what we could be doing much better! Your insight has been invaluable.
Since our changes, Moxie has made GREAT progress. There has not been an attack in five weeks. He and Bubby have shared spaces and rooms, without conflict. They have even been greeting each other, nose to nose, and blitzing around the house together (especially after baths). In addition to the doggie Prozac, the differences in our household have allowed him to become a much more relaxed and well adjusted dog. Even his obsessions have decreased. He is still air snapping while communicating to us, but ignoring it extinguishes it. I’ve seen our geriatric dogs do “fly biting”, but have never had a younger dog use it as communication. It’s very strange. I am not naive enough to think that it’s time to let my guard down when supervising their “together time”, but the tension level has definitely decreased.
With our changes in training, the most obvious change has been in Bubby. I’m not certain what he is communicating with his actions. He spends much of his time during the day just standing and staring at me or pacing and watching me, no matter what I’m doing. He has always been one of those velcro dogs that does lengthy eye contact, but it has become more exaggerated. He will stand and stare, inching toward me a few steps at a time. Then he’ll walk away and come back and start it all over again. He never really lies down to settle or relax until evening. It’s that behavior that makes you feel like you’re being yelled at or given instruction, by the look he’s shooting you. I ignore and go on with my activity, but he is relentless. I have sent him to his place, in another room or part of the room and he stays for a short while and then heads right back into his guard duty. The other day it was so annoying that I crated him in the other room, just so he’d respect my space. He has always wanted to be in my company, but would be happy to lie down and snooze. He was just content with being able to see me. Those days seem to be over. I’d appreciate your insight on this change.
Once again, thanks for your help. I’ve put Joe on your site so that he can learn from your teaching and information. He’s enjoying it. It helps him understand why I’m doing what I’m doing, instead of just carrying through with what I request him to do. I just retired from 32 years of teaching, so I guess he thinks I might want to keep the skills fine tuned…so he depends on me to instruct. 🙂 Thanks for helping me out with that!