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Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Next Step of Our Challenge!

Thank you so much for your comments, suggestions and own personal stories with your dogs.  Just that alone makes me feel better and it is nice to know I'm not trying to figure this out on my own.

No one has ever asked to pet or come close to Brut.  (Gee, I wonder why!  lol)  But I want to be prepared for the possibility.  I'm using winter walking as a way to springboard for summer when more people and dogs will be out.  Plus Brut and I are working on our leash manners.  I've let him slide for the most part and have always kept tension on the leash and well, it's just getting to be too much on my shoulder and lower back.  And I'm horrible about giving in with him.  I know, if you've followed me for a me, you know I've said these words before.  lol  But really I've worked out most of the kinks with all the dogs except Brut.  And he's been responding well.

Since there are so few people out in general where we live and Brut is not socialized, it becomes a BIG deal when someone is out.  95% of the time I deviate away from other people and dogs.  Neither of us can handle it, but there are those few times where I can't and those are the ones I want to work on especially while we are having this pause of people and dogs because of winter.

I'm not expecting to change Brut, but I'd like to find a way to gain more of his attention when he's around others and maybe, now this is a long shot, but maybe find a way for Brut to tolerate other dogs just a little. A little.  Still a long way's down the road, but I can dream!  :)

This all centers on the suggestions you gave me for helping me find a way to say, no, if someone ever asked to pet or come near Brut.  I didn't realize I didn't need to give a reason.  I always felt the need to explain and I didn't know what else to say.  So now that I can take your suggestions and roll them into something I can use for Brut's sake and mine, because Lord knows I'm not going to change over night and Brut and I can work on our anxieties together.

Just your suggestions of what works for you has cut the anxiety rate and my problem in half.  Your answers make my next step workable and doable.  Thank you for responding.  I really needed to hear your words.

And I think this is what I'd like to do for Pamela's Training Challenge.  Work with Brut on better walking manners and running into people and dogs.  It's not only going to challenge him but me as well and we are quite a team when it comes to anxieties and being around people, so it will be a test for us both!

January is National Train Your Dog Month.  If you haven't heard of Pamela's Training Challenge, click on the link above to find out how you can train your dog and develop a stronger bond between the two of you.  The link will give you all the info about the challenge.      

5 comments:

Molly The Wally said...

Good luck and we say onwards and upwards. Have a tremendous Thursday.
Best wishes Molly

Marie said...

I'll comment on this one, but I did read your previous post.

A couple of thoughts on what you can do:
1. When someone approaches and asks if they can pet him I would simply say "Thank you for asking, but he is in training and now is not a good time."
2. For children who come barreling towards you without asking, tell them "Stop!" and then explain. Stop is one of those words that is quick to say and gets action from the other person. It's enough time to usually avert trouble and then be able to explain that he is in training.
3. When someone starts to approach, turn sideways to the person. If you are tensing up on the leash and you are facing the person he could be interpreting your actions as feeling threatened by the other person. Dogs view someone coming head on to them (especially if staring at them) a a threat. Turning your body so it is sideways (and he is sideways next to you) is not seen as a threat. You can use this point in time as an opportunity to feed him treats so he knows that people coming are not only a threat but maybe a good thing too.

Good luck!

houndstooth said...

It sounds like the two of you will have a great challenge ahead of you for this month! Good luck! We're working on some things, too. :)

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