A training update

I’ve been working furiously with Zeph to get a hold on his on lead dog aggression. I don’t go anywhere with him without sausages or cheese in my pocket. He is doing really well and just yesterday a black lab dog walked past us on the other side of the road and he barely even looked at the dog! Really pleased with him. Still a lot of work to do in regards to small yappy dogs (the quiet ones he is fine with!) but I think the attitude of some of the owners I have encountered is never going to help either. He is certainly better although occasionally he still has a little outburst. But all in all, perseverance and sausages are really paying off.

I just have to keep my confidence up as well. It was shaken a little the other day. Now Zephyrs recall is still appalling so he doesn’t get off lead much (a vicious circle really :/) but in the mornings I had been letting them off to play fetch. They love it! Zephyr comes back every time with the ball and he’s been really good. If I see other dogs I usually just get a hold of him until they leave and we continue the game. Never had any problems. Until the other morning. An older man and a little Shi Tzu (a bit grumpy both the dog and owner!), caught me off guard and Zeph much to my relief went bounding over like the giant puppy he is to say hello! I was really pleased (he never seems to have problems with dogs while off lead) and I shouted to the guy “He’s fine, I’m just coming.” I could see him freaking out despite the fact zeph was down on his front with his bum up and tail wagging! I had sprained my ankle the week before so couldn’t jog over. I saw the man bend down to pick up his dog. He picked up his dog!! Actually lifted him and then of course the normal reaction from any other dog is to jump up to see what the problem is! So Zeph went to jump up and the guy punched him to get him away from him. I finally run over and grab Zeph and make him lie down. I said calmly to the man “You shouldn’t have picked your dog up, he was being friendly.” And he replied with “What? Leave him on the ground to be savaged.” I was mortified. And really upset that someone would think my snuggle bear would ‘savage’ another dog!! I never used to be a crier but lately my emotions have been a bit wild so I cried. I actually cried at the guy and said “I’m sorry he jumped up at you but he isn’t dangerous”. I’m so annoyed that I apologised! I am fed up of being overly polite to everyone and being helpful and I say good morning to everyone I pass and all I am greeted with is hostility. It’s no wonder my boy doesn’t know how to behave around people, they don’t give him a chance. It has made me furious! Anyway, just means I have to keep working at Zeph. He’s a good boy, I just have to keep training him and persevere. Owning a dog should be a pleasure not a fight with the community. But I love my boy and that’s all that matters.


“What’s a savage??”


I have still being going to agility with the wee man. He is now three by the way! We are really working hard on his weave at the moment. He’s testing me to see if I will give in. He can weave, he has shown me he can weave but he’s also very rude and will batter past me rather than weave properly if he can get away with it. When he’s being naughty (which I don’t understand because at agility he is just shaking with excitement to be allowed to play!), I just calmly say ‘oopsie’ and we go back to the start and try again. I have two set ups in the garden. I have 4 poles set out as 2 by 2, so we can work on entering a weave from different angles and he seems to like the challenge and I have 6 poles set out as a channel weave at the moment.


Basically a channel weave creates a channel and all the dog has to do it run down the middle and you slowly close the channel from the end back to the start so they start to weave the poles. I have managed to close the last two poles but pole 2 and 4 are still sticking out as you can just see in the picture.


He can run at speed through it but he needs to slow down a little and concentrate. He’s getting the hang of it now, back at class on Sunday so hopefully our teacher will help us out closing the gap. I’m enjoying the challenge with him and it is really tiring him out.



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