Lacey: Day 20

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Lacey has been with me 3 weeks as of tomorrow. During her stay with me, she has beenpracticing her basic manners, learning to wait for permission at meal times, working on learning trust and building confidence, and more.  She is still learning to clearly alert when she needs to potty, but her in-house accidents have stopped.  She is still having trouble practicing patience and self-control, but she is trying to think first rather than react.  Her barking is still problematic, but she’s responding better to the combination of verbal silence and the clicker.

Lacey is reactive. Her barking problem clearly reveals that. So, today, we’re going to be doing a lot of trust- and confidence-building exercises. We’re going to be doing mat exercises and door conditioning, as well as agility work that encourages trust and builds confidence. The goal is to get Lacey to think first instead of react; when she learns to trust, she will look to her handler for guidance and instruction, and the reactive barking will stop.

It’s been quite the journey with this little girl. She has learned a lot, but so have I. She has challenged me, but I have challenged her, too. It’s going to be quite the day when I take her home, because not only is she going to be meeting a brand new member of the family, but she and I are going to be teaching her people how to carry on, in the same way, the work I’ve been doing with her for the past three weeks.

Have a great day, everyone, and remember to stay calm and lead on.

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