Posted in canine health, canine wellbeing, dog health, dog training, dogs, motivation, positive mindset, positive psychology, positive thinking, Uncategorized

Jesse , the adorable dog

Over 14 million hits on You Tube and counting. Jesse is adorable. We all want a Jesse and we all watch marvelling at how well trained he is. He loves being busy. He is such a happy dog. Heather , his owner, has trained him with love, patience and a plan. Seems to me to be an excellent way of approaching anything in life – love, patience and a plan. The results are extraordinary and we  all love Jesse.

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Posted in canine anxiety, canine health, canine wellbeing, dog training, happy dog, Thundershirt

Thundershirts are go!

I last blogged about the Thundershirt here. We have since had quite a number of regular and very happy walks. My dog has been totally in control and able to just have a nice walk. She has walked to heel , been calm and I realise she has had a chance to process information and so is no longer tormented with the fear and worry of what would be coming at her next. I thought it might be good today to take her for a walk without her Thundershirt. I wanted to know if the change was permanent or just brought about by the Thundershirt. As you can see she was walking quite calmly but was getting the old tendency of pulling out ahead of me. On the way back, as the 4WDs were coming at us on our side of the road , she was changing into that working dog behaviour again. Eying them. Watching them and sizing them up and her muscles were changing and she was getting ready to lie low so she could pounce. It didn’t get that far, but it was all coming back to her. There had been none of that with the Thundershirt. To give you a rough idea , I’d say our walks before the Thundershirt were about 40% good behaviour. With the Thundershirt they were 100%. I had a totally calm dog who was walking perfectly to heel. Today, I’d say it was 80% good behaviour. She was a bit hyper, she was a bit nervous of the noises of cars, she was going to get back into the launching herself at cars. She was able to change, though , if I said something but before she couldn’t. She was able to calm down if I praised her and she was able to walk to heel if I asked. What she was not able to stop was the sizing up of the vehicles and the need to be ready to defend herself/pounce whatever it was in her head. My decision is not to pursue this again for another month. I am just going to put the Thundershirt on her. In a month I’ll try again without it. I had taken it with me today just incase. The fact I felt no need to get it out of my bag and use it tells me she actually did really well. I just need to avoid any difficult behaviour coming back – so Thundershirts are go!
Posted in canine anxiety, canine health, dog training, panicky dog, Thundershirt

Thundershirts are go!

I blogged about the trials and tribulations of actually getting the Thundershirt on my dog here. The velcro noise was very offputting for her and when I was trying to take the coat  off then the ripping velcro was making her very jumpy ,anxious and panicky. I have worked through all of that and been careful to reassure her every step of the way. She’s a dog from the RSPCA who seems to have been very badly abused. Every strange noise has sent her into a spin. I have worked through most of them but I didn’t want her jumping at cars as we walked. The weather is very hot here in summer so I didn’t think wearing the coat on a walk would be a good idea. Since I had to battle the first part of actually getting the coat on her, I have decided the best plan of action is to put the coat on her when we get back from our walk while I still have the leash on her and then say we are having quiet time. Normally she has needed to rest after a walk because she has been so hyper she must have been pumping a lot of adrenalin and so resting has been part of the healing for her. I have found since I put the coat on her after the walk that she is calmer. She rests, she relaxes then she goes about her business in a much calmer fashion for the rest of the day. She was even going to trot off with her coat on to go outside so that was a good sign. It may seem back to front the way this is working, but I am not complaining. I needed to get her less worried about everything. So far so good. When we go walking she has been much better even without the coat. I plan to put it on her when it’s cooler. I think it’s because the shear fact we have had to work through a lot to get the coat on and then worked on it some more for her to wear it, it has been an important step in trusting relationships for her.