Travelling to Finedon in Northamptonshire I reflected on how many times I had actually traveled to this part of Northamptonshire to conduct 121 dog training and 121 behaviour consultations. I was contacted by Barney’s family to advise on how to take things forward with some of his behaviour and future needs as Barney made progression from a puppy dog to adult. This family wanted to make sure they got things right from the start and this is where my expertise came in.
I walked up to the front door and knocked, no sound of barking this was a good sign, but also not surprising given Barney’s breed. Golden retriever. Although I like my dogs as security and to let me know when people are on the property, they are not excessive with there barking and can be stopped on command. That’s why to a certain degree we have dogs in our lives to give us that security and why we have guarding breeds. It’s when it goes to the next level that actions should be taken to dampen down a dog that constantly barks. As I entered the property, I wondered why I had been called because at this point I am normally still at the front door dealing with a over excited jumping up dog or puppy, but not this time. Barney delivered the correct welcoming with a sniff, wag of his tail and space for me to enter.
Unusual house layouts can cause behaviour problems!
I noticed as I entered the property the unusual layout of the property, this layout would pose some challenges for Barney, but more on that later. As always I like to chat through with what clients would like to achieve from the 121, and I always know there will be some other behaviour or issues that I will notice that dog owners think are ok, but will contribute to un-wanted dog behaviours later on. This is one of the best things about a one to one puppy training consultation, in that I can advise dog owners very early on how to avoid future dog behaviour problems and a for a small fee, that has to be worth it..!
Time to learn loose lead walking
We chatted for a little while, then it was time to get hands on and demonstrate my techniques and assist the family on how to change their behaviour to improve their dog relationship with Barney. It was poring with rain outside, but part of this consultation was to address some obedience training issues on the walk, like loose lead walking and dog recall. All wrapped up, of we went. It was a little funny as we walking and training with Barney in that I found out my trainers had holes in the bottom and my feet became wet very quickly. Hahah. I do like to bring a light heartiness to my consultations where I can.
Really.! Not allowed on the sofa
Barney took to my training methods really well, with all the family having a go, it was time to head back to discuss on how to move forward from the dog crate to dog bed and the other concerns. One area of concern was that Barney isn’t going to be allowed on the new sofa which is going to be delivered just after Christmas. (We can have a debate on sofas another time) This is where the layout of the house would pose a slight problem, only because in the small living room area a space would be have to be created for a dog bed for Barney to be able to spend quality constructive time with the family, but have access to a bed as well. I know the family are keen for this to happen, and I believe a space is going to be created. Well done..!
Barney has started to exhibit dog separation anxiety
Another concern that was starting to increase was that Barney was starting to exhibit dog separation anxiety, the only complex thing with dog separation anxiety is the other elements that contribute to this very stressful state in dogs, which also have to be worked on if a dog is fully to get over the anxieties. It takes some work, consistency and patience to help a dog get fully over dog separation anxiety, but I know if the family follow my very successful treatment plan all will be ok.
Overall this puppy 121 dog behaviour consultation was very successful and I know that Barney is going to receive the most fulfilling life with his owners. Everyone wants the very best for him, and it was an absolute pleasure to work with this family and pass on my knowledge, methods and beliefs on how dogs should be cared for on a daily basis to succeed balance. I will be looking forward to welcoming Barney soon to one of my dog pack walks starting up again in January 2014.