Dex will be a FORMER reactive rover soon
We took Dex to the behaviorist monday and it went VERY well. We hit the jackpot as far as getting a good trainer. She was so insightful, she is 98.9% sure we can fix our problems, and I absolutely can not wait for our next lesson! A little background Dexter is 14 months high energy, prey driven and a barrier frustrated reactive rover. We have now have confirmed he is without a doubt European lines, which helps me understand him more, with his drives I always thought he had to have some working lines in him, but now I know for sure!
Its amazing how well you think you know your dog and how experienced eyes can really give you a better perspective. We always saw our dog as a hard dog somewhat dominant (at least trys to be with other dogs) Hes actually pretty insecure when it comes to other dogs. We found a connection with his reactions, he only dose it when hes safe ex. yard through fence, car, on leash with mom backing up.
After a long discussion she took Dexter and walked up to a fence where her boarding dogs were having group play, in this type of situation Dex would uselly go NUTS. It was amazing to watch her handle him, he only let out one little minor "woof" then calmed right now this was not my dog he sat nicely relaxed at her side as he watched the dogs play, then she let me handle him and he stayed clam and relaxed, It was pretty amazing, and made me very hopeful.
I am really glad she asked for Video so she could see how he really acts she said it was serious stuff and she would never gueese that Dexter would act like that, because he was so calm with her, but if he can be good with her then we can find a way to make him work calmly with us.
He did act nice and clam with her with just his front clip harness on, but we talked tools and both agreed to try with the prong I was a little concerned we may be masking his issue with a prong on so we addressed that and she took that into consideration, although she commented how she really liked how the prong worked on him. For the next three weeks we can only use that collar, for walks. We also have to at least twice a week take Pack walks with dogs he already knows. I Love it because it makes the prong a fun association and it gets him use to the little pinch if he trys to pull ahead and the association of the pinch is not relating to his dog friends,So im loving that.
She is teaching us the proper way to introduced a "correction collar" and is going to help us wean off, because wow is it working great, but boy is he already acting collar savy. Im so glad i waited to use any correction stuff with him, because now we can be taught the proper way. We are also more then likely going to have to use a remote for some of the prey drive issues, He ran into the road once already after a cat, next time we might not be so lucky, so because its a life or death im okay with using it as long as she shows us proper and wont put that tool into my hand until she is 100% confident I can use it proper.
Overall we had a great experience, really feel like we are finally on the right track with Dex, It is so worth it to find the right trainer, and im just so hopeful now, a few more months maybe i can be one of the many owners on here that now owns a FORMER Reactive dog!!!!
Also a fun fact She told us that as far as barrier frustration goes GSDs are the #1 breed to have this issue. I could prob share more but the clock is against me today