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Did you ever have one of those days....

1029 Views 14 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  CerbiesMom
....where all your training efforts suddenly seem worth the effort?

This past Sunday, being the holiday weekend, saw mobs of people around my neighborhood. The weather was positively stunning with temps in the upper '70s, sunny, and not humid. Almost unheard of for July. We live down by the beach, so there were lots and lots of people walking past my house. There were a lot of yard parties , so there were 3X the usual number of kids out and about.

I was finishing up some yard work and had Rusty outside with me much of the day. He was off leash and was just being golden--if you'll pardon the pun. He wasn't doing anything spectacular or heroic; he was just being obedient and well mannered. He is "the mayor", so everyone who came by was offered a greeting, but he was being totally respectful and not bothering people who didn't want to have a large dog slobbering on them. He ignored other people's ill mannered mutts, and attended to me very closely. It's as if he were a trained dog or something.

Of course, about half the people who spent time luvving him up thought that, because he's a Golden, he was born that way. They have no conception of the hundreds of hours that went into civilizing my psycho puppy.
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Training? Whats that? I thought behaved dogs just came out of a box that way.
I just love it when people tell me how Goldens are so sweet, gentle, and laid back. Rusty is typical Golden Retriever in that he LOVES everybody, and he doesn't have a "mean" bone in his body. And he's HAPPY! He's just the happiest damned critter you ever saw. However, "laid back" appears nowhere on his resume. I call him the "Red Rocket" because he's got a reddish coat and he moves very fast. And also because of....the other thing.
Most of them are yappy territorial nuisances because that's their nature. It couldn't possibly be the lack of training/socialization the poor hellions experience.
I held that anti-Chi bias for a long time. I worked in apartment houses, and also installing heating and A/C equipment in private homes. I've been "viciously" attacked by Chihuahuas, Lhasas, Shih Tzus, mini Poodles, and a bunch of others. I developed the "little dogs are neurotic" mindset. Then I worked with an elderly Dominican gent who carried a Chihuahua dog in his tool bag. The dog went everywhere with him, and was as steady as granite. That Chi had one of the largest vocabularies of any dog I've known. He'd fetch tools, by name, from the old man's bag and I don't think I ever saw him make a mistake. It's a real eye opener when you realize that any well bred dog will largely be what you teach him to be.
I frequently have those "this training is doing NOTHING" days. :p
There is lots of despair in my training log. My dog is 3 and still very much a puppyhead. I've never seen a dog who had such a need to make things happen. That's really the best way to describe it. If there was nothing going on, he'd get something going. If there was no mischief to be found, he'd manufacture his own. Even with training, he'd obey direct commands, but there's no taking my eyes off him. So on this very busy day, he allowed me to relax and enjoy his company. I might have to keep him now.
...and then I got home from work. For the first time EVER, Libby decided to investigate the kitchen garbage, and I got to clean up the filth that she spread all over the house.
A dog can resist anything but temptation.
Our past boxer was the "perfect" dog... so other family members started getting boxers, and theirs didn't turn out as well. So obviously we were just lucky that ours was good, right?
My ex brother in law has bred and shown Boxers for quite a few years now, and I've gotten to know a slew of his dogs. They are truly fine animals, and some are superb. However, I would say that getting a Boxer pup and hoping for the best is not a winning strategy.
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