Cody is a very fearful Labrador Retriever that started In-Home Dog Training last month when his coping mechanisms were making him hard to live with. Overcoming fear is a long term goal for Cody, and in the month that we worked together, he gained the tools necessary to reach that goal and took steps towards that goal too.
He learned how to focus on his job in the face of distractions. Commands like ‘Stay’ gave him an opportunity to slow down, take a look around and realize that the whole world wasn’t trying to eat him. He has gained self-control enough to hold a sit/stay in Baltimore city while pedestrians walked by (while I tortured him by making him wear a scarf and gloves) and to take successful trips to pet stores, hardware stores and through busy parking lots without loosing his cool. He became confident enough to play in new environments and in front of strangers too.
At the same time, his owners learned how to use the training to prevent him from getting overwhelmed and how to help him the times when he does get overwhelmed. With practice and steady, slow exposure to scary situations he will be able to respond in more appropriate ways, without having to rely on training commands so heavily. For now, the training is providing a path to a less stressful life for this big yellow dog.