Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Dog Training: Dogs-in-Progress

It's funny how many people we meet who think our dogs are 'perfect'. Sure we have videos of  Ms. M putting her toys away, and showing our dogs happily greeting people across Chicago in full costume, and we realize our dogs have come a long way. At the same time, they will always be a work-in-progress. Despite the many times they have been great, there are still times that our dogs act like toddlers and might have a tantrum or embarrass us--usually in front of people who read our blog and we're meeting for the first time.
We were thinking about this when we were preparing for our dog walking club, as we asked all members to highlight what they're working on with their dogs. We too completed a paragraph explaining what our dogs were working on, but as we began writing, it became more than a paragraph and we started to realize how much we were working on.

We want to work on Mr B's problems of getting overexcited around other dogs. How he squeals like a little piglet when he sees a dog from afar. How he will bark to play with the dog, which will eventually lead to the barking hic-ups. How he goes absolutely crazy when he sees dogs in cars and goes into 'Bolt-mode' thinking he has to rescue them.
We thought about all the things we still have to work on with Miss M. Her new habit of 'barking smack' at other dogs when she hears Mr. B getting excited. How she thinks every person walking by needs to pet her. And how she communicates using her 'hungry gremlin voice' which people misinterpret. How she needs to work on being less stubborn and grabbing her own leash and playing with it when she is bored or frustrated. And just being overall bossy.
So we too are always working on things with our dogs, and part of our reason for starting dog club, to have a place to work on issues with like-minded people. 

19 comments:

Two Crazy Coaches said...

It's great you realize their issues and continue to work on them. We've been really trying to work on how the dogs react when we come home or other people come in. I've failed too many times and just need to stay consistent. Always a work in progress.

Froggy said...

I am always impressed with your boundaries with Miss M. If I had the she would be a hot mess. She is far to cute for me to lay down the law.

Yes they are always a work in progress but so am I. This is going to sound SUPER cheesy but I feel like I have grown so much since I adopted Maize and we've gone through a lot with her issues that in the end we've both become better dog/person.

Pauley, the Mr. or the Mrs. said...

You have no idea how many times I have read your blog & wondered why my dogs are not more like yours. Of course I then followed that with, because I am not consistent & I am pretty lazy :) The dog walking club is a wonderful idea. I could really see that helping me & my gang out.

Two Pugs in a Pod said...

I want to hear Mr. B squeal like a piglet!!! :) Hahaha, sorry, I know this is an undesirable habit. Natty does it too--she literally SCREAMS if she sees a dog that she isn't going to be allowed to approach (i.e. they're going in the other direction). It's totally humiliating.

loveandaleash said...

thanks for posting this. we try to present an honest picture of our dogs, but definitely focus on the positive since it is after all a tool to get our fosters out there in the public sphere. luckily stevie has been a great dog so far. i am loving this trend of my pit bull blog friends writing more candidly about the issues they have with their dogs. it's so easy to put on a show about having perfect dogs, leaving others feeling kind of alone and inferior. in reality, we all have issues that we are working on, and it's nice to talk about them openly. hooray!

lindsay said...

Colt also squeals. He has Learned not to bark when he sees another dog so instea he yodels...our trainer has told us we need to walk backwards until he stops. Sometimes we don't get very far on our walks. Unfortunately he usually does it right in front of a nearby restaurant patio and everyone smiles at colt's antics and musical stylings...

riggsy74 said...

It's so funny when you mention the hungry gremline voice. My little girl does the same thing. And as you stated, a lot of people misinterpret it, but she is truely just playing. I try to work on that on a regular basis.

I have a question for you. For their dog tags, it appears that they are on a detachable piece. Can you tell me where you got it at? I would love to have that for mine. Sometimes the county license turns her fur colors.

Two Pitties in the City said...

Hi Riggsy:
We have our dog tags on "Rubits" which are so easy to take off/put on to switch out collars and just have a single tag in the home (all that jingling was driving us crazy). You can order one from Sirius here: http://www.siriusrepublic.com/rubitclip.html

And let us know if you figure out a way to stop that Gremlin voice, please share! We tried telling Miss M it wasn't attractive, but I guess that is just her voice.

Tucker The Crestie said...

Ah, no matter how wonderful our dogs are, they all have things that can be worked on, just like we do. Phoebe sounds like someone is skinning her alive when I come home at night ... so now I don't come in the house at all while she's carrying on like that, and when I finally do come in and she is quiet, she gets C/Td. (Sometimes I stand on my front porch for awhile. Not always fun when the weather is less than accomodating!) :)

A&A Friese said...

It's great to know that everyone has their issues! I completely agree with everyone about how it is easy to pretend your dog is perfect particularly in the blogosphere because you have complete control of what you divulge about your pooch, but it is so much more refreshing and realistic to talk openly about the day to day struggles along with the triumphs, thanks for the great post!

Kari in Vegas said...

Once you stop working with them they forget it all!

Kari
http://dogisgodinreverse.com

OG said...

Petey makes a Cujo/werewolf noise when he plays. His dog friends don't mind and their people think it's funny. But if anyone one else is around they give him a wide berth. He also gets hysterical when he sees people swimming. Maybe like Mr.B and dogs in cars he thinks has to save them. And he will grab his leash when he 1)thinks he can get away with it 2) someone else is holding it (see #1) 3) is having a happy fit

brooke said...

Awww Mr B the rescue doggy!
Darwin's similar. She's been getting better at not being reactive to other dogs on leash, but she's still a generally very vocal Dane. When she wants to play or is playing she likes to bark and other people who don't know her thinks she's being aggressive. She also thinks almost everyone needs to pet her (usually the people that don't want to) and ignores the people that do want to pet her. hahaha

Corbin said...

'hungry gremlin voice' I TOTALLY DO THAT TOO!!!! And people think I'm growling. Mom has been trying to find a way to make me stop... we'll let you know if we figure anything out!
-Corbin

Kate@TwentySixToLife said...

That's funny about Mr. B's gremlin voice, I think Mel has her own version of that. Like Ms. M, Nemo's pretty demanding of people's attention too.

houndstooth said...

I think people do themselves a great disservice when they think they and their dogs have no issues to work on. There are always things to work on. Still, it is hard to believe your two aren't perfect! lol

waldobungie said...

It's good to know that even you guys have some things your dogs needs to work on! :) Turk squeals like a pig when he sees dogs too!!!! Daniel gets super embarrassed when this happens, and I never know how to calm Turk down...I can't wait to hear how you guys are able to work on this!! Good stuff...

Felicity said...

Please, please, please record Miss M doing her Hungry Gremlin voice :)
I think Miss M's bossiness is part of who she is :)

Two Grad Students and a Pittie said...

too funny! "barking smack!" im glad you wrote that your pups still have issues, makes me feel better!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...