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The New Dog Part 1

DV SpookyCat      Monday, December 23, 2019

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     It's been seven months since I adopted the springy 18 pound schnauzer from Return to Dog Part 4. (https://dvrthoughts.com/return-to-dog-part-4+322074) At our first TADSAW training, I picked up on hesitation from the trainer because he didn't meet the 45 pound weight limit and isn't a common breed for PTSDogs. He assured me he'd figure it out. I don't think I've been back. Between a ridiculous commute, during rush hour and repeatedly getting down there, only to find out training was cancelled or moved, I decided to take a break.
 
Basically, my husband is his servant.
 
     The new pup just turned four years old... maybe? He's also up to 29 pounds and looks much larger than when we got him, in the frame. Per my vet's offer, I had a complete physical with x-rays and blood tests performed. No old broken bones, no signs of past abuse, and his joints look great. My vet is pretty sure he's actually less than two years and we cannot figure out why the previous owner would give us another dog's records or lie about the age? Whatevs. He's healthy and will be for a VERY long time!
 
     The bad news is, he has some obstacles to overcome. I treated the first few months as rehab, letting him get used to being in a house, no kennel, and the day to day life that any dog should be familiar with. We still see some symptoms of having been kenneled for a very long time. He turns in circles when stressed, but outside of that, he's come a log way. I had several Schnauzer owners tell me that if I got him *juuuuuust* a little overweight, he'd mellow right out. He did. I've been taking him to my vet for grooming, because he was neglected and fearful there, now he loves it. In our day to day lives, we've just been working on basic obedience and car rides.
 
     The good news is, he has a strong scent drive and will be great for warning me of the two anaphylaxis causing allergens that plague my existence, marijuana/hemp and avocado. He's already doing DPT and interrupting or deterring behaviors that lead to attacks. He's also waking my husband up at night. I was annoyed, at first, because I'm the one that has nightmares, but it turns out, I'm sleeping better. I guess, sensing his presence was part of the issue? I'll take it.
 
     We are juuuuust starting public access training. I like Lowes at 7 AM before the handsy people are awake. He has an amazing game face, alerts perfectly, and covers down with the seriousness of a Doberman. We're still working on ignoring humans until given permission. Unlike previous dogs, he LOVES interacting with most anyone, so I'm going to work on my own issues there. He realllllly wants to play with other dogs, which I love, but have to discourage. I think I'm going to reach back out to the TADSAW trainings and start doing that again, just so I can focus on getting him to leave working dogs alone.
 
     The other hurdle is that he really loves my husband and my husband REALLY loves him back. The dog is smart and clever, so he has trained my husband to drop everything and do his bidding, share food, sit outside at 2 AM so he can sniff for bunnies, get him cookies. Basically, my husband is his servant. So, as we get closer to public access and spend more time training, hubby is gonna have to scale back the genie routine.
 
     The moral of the story here is that no two (or three) dogs will train the same, as quickly, or even to do the same tasks in spite of having the same handler. Don't lose hope because something is different. Different is growth.
 
Article written by: DV SpookyCat; She doesn't purr but she will tell you if you're an asshole.

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