Sunday, October 13, 2013

Pack Leader-ish

It has become more and more apparent that Ivy is going to require every ounce of the exercise-discipline-affection rule along with the rules-boundaries-limitations rule. Woooweee that girl is stubborn! I've been doing affection-affection-affection. And, while it's been fun, she is now pushing 4 months old and is really needing to learn the gosh darn rules. High-energy is just a mainstay of the boxer breed. Some are more high-energy than others but, if you have a boxer, your going to have to provide an outlet for all that energy. I think this is why so many of these babies end up in shelters. 

Let's face it, we live in a fairly lethargic culture and people don't want to take the time or effort required to raise and keep a pet that is going to obligate them to get up off their butts. 

Sorry for that side-rant

So far, our leash-training/walking exercises have been fairly short sessions. Just a stroll down the road a bit or a walk to the barn. So, today we did a real walk. She went two miles with me. 

When Aimee was here with Daisee...
(This is Daisee, isn't she cute?) 

Anyway, when they were here and went walking with us, Daisee was pulling on the leash and about choking herself, even having to throw up a couple times. I asked if I could have a try at walking her and, within a few minutes of calm-assertiveness and quick concise corrections, she was walking like a champ. I had claimed my victory a THE dog whisperer. 

Yeah, Ivy wasn't nearly as quick to be corrected.
I could feel my patience wearing out and that's bad. Dogs can sense your energy and, if you're not sure of yourself, you can forget about them trusting you with their discipline. 

We stopped a few times and adjusted the collar and leash situation. I would make her sit, catch my breath and compose myself with some calm assurance and we would continue on our journey. 

It wasn't until she started to physically wear out that she began complying and quit pulling and trying to run off with my arm. She is surprisingly strong. 

Even on our last leg home, she was still trying to get away with running ahead and/or sneaking behind me to be on Emma's side and grab HER leash. Oh how she wants to be the pack leader. 

It dawned on me that I had a couple of those prong collars in the barn that we had used on our show goats and that I had seen Cesar Milan (the actual dog whisperer) use them on exceptionally stubborn dogs.

We stopped by the barn and found them. After I took a couple links out of it to fit her tiny widdle head, I put it on her and we walked the last quarter mile home with much less struggling. 

Isn't that just the most horrible awful looking medieval torture device? I've been assured that it only pinches a bit and is actually less painful than a jerk on a nylon collar would be. And, that last bit of the walk was far less effort on my part. 

I do plan on reading more about leash training and those prong collars before our next walk, which will be tomorrow. And the next day, and the day after that and the day after that......

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