Challenge… Accepted

Happy Saturday!  Today, I am getting ready for an overnight visit from Oliver.  I saw him a couple of months ago, and what I saw left me feeling rather dismayed.  He is wearing a shock collar all the time, and his manners leave a lot to be desired.  There are so many things going on with this pup that I don’t even know where to begin.  And I will only have the evening and a few hours in the morning to at least get him started on the right track to being more polite and respectful, before I have to return him to my sister.  Thank goodness I have Glimmer; she will help me teach Oliver the right way to be.

Tomorrow afternoon, I meet with my friend about using her pool.  While I am there, I will be meeting with her friend about her friend’s dog, Boomer.  Boomer is a 10-year-old Schnauzer, and from what I’ve been told, he is undisciplined and unruly. Off leash, his recall is zero, and not only does he completely ignore his owner, he is also a very disrespectful guest when he visits other people’s homes.  His owner tried to get him in the pool for a swim…. and instead of using his feet to tread the water, he sank.  Every dog knows how to swim; it’s instinctual. Boomer needs to remember that he, too, knows how to swim.


Tomorrow evening, I am doing an assessment on a dog currently being fostered for DINO Rescue.  Ben is approximately 3 years old, and is one of several dogs DINO rescued from Mexico and brought to Calgary. While his exact breed is unknown, the coordinator and the foster family think he may have some bully-breed in him, as well as hound – and maybe even some Chihuahua. He is a medium-sized dog weighing in at about 40 pounds, and the foster family describes him as being “extremely strong.”

According to the foster family, Ben pulls so hard on the walk that the wife is physically unable to walk him. He is reactive towards people and other dogs, barking and lunging in an effort to attack, not to meet or play.  When the family has visitors come over, Ben sometimes growls, barks, and lunges at those visitors.  During the walk, if he sees moving things, he targets and then zones in on them – not out of curiosity, but rather, a desire to attack. The family also says the dog appears to have some issues with people of any color other than white.

We don’t know this dog’s past – and we never will – but the family, the coordinator, and I wonder if he may have been used as a bait dog at some point while he was in Mexico.

Based solely on what the foster family has told me about the dog’s behavior, I am treating this as a possible red-zone case.

Working with red-zone dogs is a challenge for even the most seasoned trainers – I just want to be clear about that.  It is not the kind of situation that just anyone can deal with.  Red-zone dogs are extremely dangerous; if you don’t know what you’re doing and you so much as blink the wrong way at the wrong time, you can find yourself on the wrong end of the dog’s teeth, being shredded like you’re paper.  While I am hoping that the dog’s behavior is merely over-excitement and territorial, I am, none the less, prepared to work with him if it turns out that he is a red-zone case.

After I meet the dog, finish the assessment, and give the coordinator my recommendations, I will provide an update about this situation at the first opportunity.

Thanks for visiting and commenting. Have a great weekend! 🙂


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