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Discussion Starter #1
I accepted River as an evaluation dog in December; she had agression issues. As I already have 3 dogs, my silly little mind never really seemed to grasp that I wasn't giving up on her.

River bonds to one person and becomes fearful agressive with everyone around that person. We worked hard; she attached to me and was agressive to DH. So I had him feed her and walk her; crate her at night and release her in the morning and after a week of that, she was no longer scaring him into S***ing his pants. He never did get bit though.

After her continued agression and reactiveness, I told the GSRSV that I didn't feel that she was adoptable unless it was to a strong GSD understanding family with no small kids. I felt that she would always be a liability and would have to be controlled in all new situations, more than most dogs. It was either release her back in to rescue where she would get no work or training, or keep her where she was assimilating into our pack. (Rescue Failure?)

I recently took her to visit a behaviorist/trainer named John Connor who lives not too far away. He talked extensively on what my expectations were ( I don't want her to tear the clothing off of my middle child of 23 who fears her more than she fears him) and I would like to have a few friends over without fearing that they may have some parts removed.

It was a Highly beneficial couple of hours ($$$) as well. While I have attended several training classes, none of them really went into the depth of control without threat that he did. I felt so much more secure in my handling after this. I am able to walk River around our neighborhood through the reactive Doberman obstacle successful, as well as past the straining pitbull test and the double reactive dogs going the other way challenge. The closest we came to a confrontation was the horrible chihuahua walking in front of us obstacle (I Think that she wanted to get closer to find out what the heck it was)



So here is a picture that I never expected to see; especially after I've only been working with her since December. River is the German Shepherd looking dog in the middle, the rest of them are Belgian Shepherds and a couple of wanna bees. This is the first time that River has been around and close to people without threatening clothes or body parts.

Yay!!! She's not hopeless!!

Next phase is Suszanne Clothiers Seminar in Oakland in a week or so. Don't know if she's a demo dog or not, but lots to learn.
 

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That's wonderful news!! Congrats to both you and River.
 

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I'm so happy for you and for her! I don't think it's nice for a dog to be so aggressive/fearful when other people are around. Can be very stressful for them and YOU of course!

There is nothing like a good trainer, I agree wholeheartedly! We took Blake out of the training school and now we drive 45 min to get him to a one on one lesson with a very experienced trainer and afterward he socializes with her dogs while we drink tea! The difference from just 2 classes is unbelievable.

Good luck with everything and keep looking for the GOOD trainers!
 

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this is wonderful news...we are working with our rescued GSD and just had a behaviorlist over for fear issues so I hope to soon be able to celebrate too
 

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Good girl River! I know first hand how hard and demanding is working with a fearful shepherd, but it is rewarding and surely makes us much better handlers and helps out to sort the priorities. Good behaviourists are a HUGE help!! I am so happy you kept River, she would never have a chance to find a better home and owners.
 

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Carol, you didn't tell me you had PICTURES!
That's so awesome!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Just got them up
Had the dog party then the Easter Dinner then Mom's Surgery...finally back to work to get some rest and some pix up
 

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You can't tell by looking at the picture, but I believe that there were at least 5 more dogs behind us...





No Carol, you CANNOT have a puppy



or two


 

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Great for you and your dog. Your topic "a good trainer is worth his weight is gold", is especially appropriate.

Hard to find, but well worth it.
 

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Quote: Next phase is Suszanne Clothiers Seminar in Oakland in a week or so
Lucky You! I really enjoyed reading her book "Bones Would Rain From The Sky". Please let us know how the Seminar goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I too, read that book. Again, and again. Wish I had read it again recently but I really like her perspectives on understanding our dogs.

I had an email earlier this week that River would not be a demo dog and I was partly relieved and partly disappointed. Relieved, because I really don't like to be the center of attention and don't take criticism well. Disappointed because I think this experience would be so totally awesome and beneficial for both River and myself.

Then, today I get an email that two demo dogs backed out and they would love to have me bring River


Now I'm all nervous and excited and I feel like Christmas is coming! Someone asked me if she will be okay away from home for that long for two full days. River's greatest pleasure is to be beside me! I have always felt loved by my dogs, but never quite as ...mm...totally devoted to? Velcroed to? GSD'd as I am with River. Can't really explain it well, but she just wants to be with me.

So, hopefully I will get a chance to check in tomorrow evening...this is going to be so great


Wish me luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Update of the seminar; I wasn't sure if I should keep it in the training section or not..mostly pictures and me bragging...


Suzanne Clothier Seminar
 
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