Sunday, January 23, 2011

Doggy Woes

Juneau

So we picked up Juneau from K-9 University on Friday afternoon.  We talked with the trainer for about 30 minutes about what they worked on with Juneau, what they still need to work on, and what we need to do with her at home.  Then he did a demonstration of what commands Juneau had learned, and let the both of us practice them with her.  She did really well and performed heel, sit, stay, and down, while on a leash.  She's not ready to do these things consistently off a leash, but we know it will come with more practice.  We felt really optimistic about her progress over the past two weeks.  We set up our first personal lesson for next weekend, and we'll have a few of those, then move on to group lessons.

Casey

If you recall, before we dropped her off, her and Casey had gotten into a vicious fight which left us unable to put the two of them in the same room together.  For the last four days of Juneau's training/boarding, we brought Casey up there for daycare so they could work on socialization.  They put them in runs next to each other and took them out on walks near each other each day, to try and get them on "speaking" terms again.  By Friday afternoon, they said they still weren't ready for them to be completely alone together, but they had seen improvement.  We brought them home in separate crates, and kept them segregated for the night.  On Saturday, we worked on reacquainting them.  Meezy took Juneau out on a walk, and I took Casey.  We walked near each other, passed by each other, etc, just trying to get them used to being in the same vicinity.  Things seemed to be going okay, but we could still sense some apprehension from the two of them.  On Sunday we tried again, this time inside the house.  We put the training leashes on both of them, but let them both be in the living room. We took turns walking them by the other, sitting near each other, giving them treats, etc.  They both did really well, but we're still too nervous to just take the leashes off and let them interact unrestricted.  Since I hate putting Juneau in a crate for too long, I had been taking turns making Casey do it so that Juneau could roam freely sometimes.  I was sitting at the table eating lunch, and Riley and Juneau were near me.  Riley got dominant and began thinking he owned me and the food, so he snapped at Juneau.  That set her off and they started fighting.  I had to separate the two while Meezy came running in from the other room to help.  My finger got bit in the process, but it wasn't enough to draw blood.  Alas, Juneau had to go back in the crate.

Sigh.

I don't know what to do with them.  It's obvious that Casey and Riley are the ones that are instigating the fights with Juneau, but she's the one who reacts aggressively.  The other two just want to snap and growl at her sometimes, which she doesn't know how to handle.  We can't do this segregation routine forever.  It's draining on Meezy and I, and it's not conducive for being able to leave the house for extended periods of time. I guess we'll just keep working on the socialization between Casey and Juneau, and continue with her obedience training.

   Riley

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