Lara Meets New Shoes and Stuff!

We often talk about the importance of socializing dogs and why it is so important when dogs are young and in the ‘explore everything – no fear’ period. This becomes so obvious when you are faced with an older dog that has had limited exposure to almost everything. Even the smallest of things become a major emotional event to overcome. Think about shoes. I have noticed, since the weather has cooled down here in Florida that we are now shelving our flip-flops and summer shoes for the more hardy footwear, when I approach Lara with my new feet coverings it takes her several seconds to sniff, assess, bark and then accept socialization of shoes, too funny. I now go outside with a different style of shoe as often as possible.

 

Last week we began training Lara on the dog door we had installed in her room. Yes she lives in a 20 x 20 room that we have gradually added home items to so she has time to accept each new piece of furniture. If you have followed Lara’s blog you will know that it was a tremendous effort to even get her inside in a relaxed state. We have attempted to bring her into the main area of the house but the overwhelming number of stimuli, visual and sound, has her running for the hills. She now loves her chair and her dog bed is left to cool. She is comfortable with a radio on and does not shudder each time a door or window opens or closes. Anyway, part one of her dog door training was to remove the cover and expose the flap; it took two days for her to be comfortable with this. Once the cover was removed she would not go in or out of the room. Step 2 was to secure the flap up exposing the outside. Once in the room she would not approach the door. Step 3 – once comfortable with the flap fastened up was to encourage her through the dog door. This was actually the easiest step. I trained Rick’s 9 pound JC mix to jump back and forth through the door and Lara was so excited that she jumped after Gizmo and was astonished to find herself outside. Now getting her back in through the dog door, that will have to wait a while!

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Lara Showing How Happy She Is Playing Ball

The Lara Update – Meeting The Large Noisy Machine

Well today is Thursday and we commence our DogSmith Franchise training on Saturday, what that means is that we will have three new DogSmith business owners on site for 14 days learning all about how to open and operate a DogSmith business. During the 14 days they are responsible to get a puppy and a dog through a 14 day training curriculum and to also work on a dog behavioral problem using the DogSmith training methods and philosophy.

Lara our Little Adorable Rescue Aussie resides in our DogSmith in door training room. You can see her here wandering around. For the 14 days she is going to be exposed to three new people and lots of noise and activity. She will be allowed to wander and come and go as she is comfortable. This should be a massive boost to her socialization program, if we do it correctly and do not over expose her to anything too quickly.

In preparation for the training we have mowed all the training pastures, this was the first mow of the year and I was interested to see how Lara would respond to the mower. She was great, she did not hightail it inside but stayed well back from the noise hiding in a bush. For Lara this was a huge improvement, she used to shake and run from a door closing.  When the mower was parked in the yard she was brave enough to approach it. If you look carefully here you can spot the brave girl approaching the huge black monster. I am very excited about the next two weeks; I am hoping Lara will leap ahead. She has already made such great progress