Mr. Blue is coming along. Best class ever Sunday. You know what we did?
Nothing. Just walked around, up and down the street, and let him look at the dogs and people. Let him sniff the grass, wander and just relax.
Let him be a dog. No commands, very little attention on him and enjoyed the sunshine and fresh air.
We worked with 2 other dogs by just walking past them, over and over, while the foster parents helped them to stay calm and correct them when they became reactive. This was interesting to Blue. Of course, being Blue, he wanted to walk over and say hello.
Not once did he jump on me, or pull the leash or do anything but walk and smile.
Then the instructor came over. Blue was lying in the grass and chewing on a stick. She showed me how to be able to take it away and give it back to him. Blue can get a tad reactive when anything is taken away from him. It bothers him. You can see it. So he got a treat every time I took the stick and another one when I gave it back to him. Back and forth, quietly with very high praise.
Then she wanted to see how he was with another dog. This is a big thing and takes intelligence and being able to read a dog perfectly.
So nose-to-nose he went with Miss Betty Boop. Blue was ecstatic and immediately jumped and hugged her. She hugged back. I was trying to stay relaxed and trust. I held tight as he was pulling the leash with everything he had.
Betty was fine. She is used to work with other dogs. This is Miss Betty Boop:
So little steps based on tons of praise and fun when he's good and ignoring him completely when he misbehaves. He hates to be ignored, so it works well.
We will slowly have Blue be around Betty. She will not put up with any nonsense but Blue has no idea what that is.
That's OK. We'll get him there and my hope is he will soon have a friend to play with, to learn from and to just be a dog with.
That would make me the happiest person around.