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Discussion Starter · #1,021 ·
Ah, I see, that's how you've been doing LAT, you just haven't been doing it in the hallway of a lively downtown apartment building in one of the most beautiful cities in North America. Good learning lesson for anyone following along: dogs do not generalize well. You can practice on a dozen umbrellas, and then someone shows up with a golf umbrella and the dog reacts. C'est la vie avec des caniches. (I muddled my languages for a moment and wrote: c'est la vie con des caniches, lol.)
C’est vrai!

As I was typing that, a dog gave a loud, sharp bark right at our door. While Peggy’s been rolling with the more distant hall barks reasonably well, this was a whole new level of provocation.

While I can’t stay ahead of all these triggers, I can reward bounce-back. And Peggy just got a big piece of juicy chicken breast for immediately shaking it off. (Literally. I rewarded her for shaking her body and doing a bow stretch.)
 

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Reading the posts about Peggy's "vacation" experiences makes me grateful that most of my dogs have been show dogs who are accustomed to having strange new things happen. I took Zoe to a dog show when she was about 8 months old that was in a building that had stairs with open metal treads. She was concerned at first, but after 2 or 3 steps she realized it was OK that she could see through the treads to the floor far below.

So the more your dog has a wide variety of experiences in a variety of places the more self-reliant that dog will be. So take your dog places when you are able to do so. Let him/her walk on unusual surfaces and see unusual things. That way when you have to take your dog to someplace new s/he will take it in stride.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,023 ·
Reading the posts about Peggy's "vacation" experiences makes me grateful that most of my dogs have been show dogs who are accustomed to having strange new things happen. I took Zoe to a dog show when she was about 8 months old that was in a building that had stairs with open metal treads. She was concerned at first, but after 2 or 3 steps she realized it was OK that she could see through the treads to the floor far below.

So the more your dog has a wide variety of experiences in a variety of places the more self-reliant that dog will be. So take your dog places when you are able to do so. Let him/her walk on unusual surfaces and see unusual things. That way when you have to take your dog to someplace new s/he will take it in stride.
I wish I knew how to prepare her for this specific situation. She did fabulously on the big ferry, thanks to the two mini trial runs my husband did with her. And we’ve intentionally introduced her to new sights, sounds, and surfaces over the years, beginning with her fabulous puppy class. She will, for example, step onto an open grate or floating dock without batting an eye.

But taking her from a rural environment to an urban high-rise environment has been a massive leap. She is coping beautifully with strange new things like balconies, but is stressed by all the dogs and strange humans lurking in the hall outside “her” door.

In retrospect, I wish we’d not let covid keep us from travelling when she was younger. I wonder if that might have helped. Or maybe her temperament actually benefited from the stability... So hard to know.

How does Zoe do in hotels in big cities? Did you do anything special to prepare her for this? I don’t want to give up on the possibility of future urban travels.
 

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I wish I knew how to prepare her for this specific situation. She did fabulously on the big ferry, thanks to the two mini trial runs my husband did with her. And we’ve intentionally introduced her to new sights, sounds, and surfaces over the years, beginning with her fabulous puppy class. She will, for example, step onto an open grate or floating dock without batting an eye.

But taking her from a rural environment to an urban high-rise environment has been a massive leap. She is coping beautifully with strange new things like balconies, but is stressed by all the dogs and strange humans lurking in the hall outside “her” door.

In retrospect, I wish we’d not let covid keep us from travelling when she was younger. I wonder if that might have helped. Or maybe her temperament actually benefited from the stability... So hard to know.

How does Zoe do in hotels in big cities? Did you do anything special to prepare her for this? I don’t want to give up on the possibility of future urban travels.
I would have to ask her handler about hotels. I can tell you that she absolutely loved the trips we took with the travel trailer because she got to sleep in the bed with me!

What is true is that show dogs are usually started out as early as 4 months of age and certainly by six months. Those of us who show realize how important it is to expose potential show dogs to a wide variety of stuff. It's very difficult to take an older dog who has never been anywhere and make a calm, confident show dog out of him/her. It can be done, but it's ever so much easier to accustom a puppy to new sights/sounds/smells.

I think you are doing a great job with Peggy. She is certainly learning to relax!
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,025 ·
I would have to ask her handler about hotels. I can tell you that she absolutely loved the trips we took with the travel trailer because she got to sleep in the bed with me!

What is true is that show dogs are usually started out as early as 4 months of age and certainly by six months. Those of us who show realize how important it is to expose potential show dogs to a wide variety of stuff. It's very difficult to take an older dog who has never been anywhere and make a calm, confident show dog out of him/her. It can be done, but it's ever so much easier to accustom a puppy to new sights/sounds/smells.

I think you are doing a great job with Peggy. She is certainly learning to relax!
I think a travel trailer might be in our future!

And thank you. I appreciate the encouragement. :) Socializing a dog with a stable temperament and no early social deficits is so different from socializing a dog who has been reactive from day 1. I try to keep my expectations in check, but I’m not always successful.

Thankfully she does have an excellent off-switch, so at least we get a break. Last night she slept for about 12 hours, and only got up because we told her to. Lol. Thankful every day that she’s a couch potato at heart.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,026 ·
So this was a surprise:

Property Building Window Window blind Wood


We brought Peggy’s bed up from the car when we first arrived, but she’s not used it at all. We tossed it in the corner and kind of forgot about it.

Then my husband sat down to catch up on a little work today, and she walked right over to it, circled a few times, and flopped down.

Back home, she frequently snoozes in her bed while he works. I guess seeing his laptop come out sparked that memory and she was like, “I know what I’m supposed to do now!”

Good reminder how much of her routine has been missing this past week. I bet she was relieved to see him doing something so familiar.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,027 ·
Good morning from Peggy and her dryer ball:

Photograph Comfort Wood Fur clothing Toy


Yesterday was pretty close to perfect. She got to stretch her legs in an empty field, and had no trouble with the people and dogs she encountered after that. Then lots of sleeping before and after a harbour stroll.

This morning my husband said she had her nose to the ground for most of the second half of their potty walk. She was loose and relaxed and happy to be a poodle. Hello, Green Zone!

Font Line Poster Happy Advertising
 

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I hate that we can’t protect her from all the unpredictability around here. I think that’s the fuel on the reactivity fire—not being able to show her that we’ve got her back.

Like yesterday before dinner, when she was peeing and an unleashed dog came running out of nowhere and started barking in her face. (The owner was on his phone, totally oblivious.) Or last night, my husband opened the door to the lobby and they came face-to-face with two huge barking dogs being held back by a single person.

Peggy did fine after both encounters, but this morning she’s on high alert, even barking and lunging at a dog who was across the street.

I don’t remember it being like this in Toronto, but maybe that’s because I could just pick Gracie up?

Dog Vertebrate Couch Comfort Dog breed
 

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I don’t remember it being like this in Toronto, but maybe that’s because I could just pick Gracie up.

To me, it seems like there are a lot of dog owners these days who are not learning anything about their dogs and aren't even bothering to train the basics. They take the dogs out in public and they are being pulled by them, if they meet someone along the way the dogs jump all over people. There is a man where we live that lets his pitbull off-leash daily. It almost knocked my six-foot-tall son down when it ran up and jumped on him. And it has already attacked more than one other dog. I just think common sense ain't so common anymore.
 

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I don’t remember it being like this in Toronto, but maybe that’s because I could just pick Gracie up.

To me, it seems like there are a lot of dog owners these days who are not learning anything about their dogs and aren't even bothering to train the basics. They take the dogs out in public and they are being pulled by them, if they meet someone along the way the dogs jump all over people. There is a man where we live that lets his pitbull off-leash daily. It almost knocked my six-foot-tall son down when it ran up and jumped on him. And it has already attacked more than one other dog. I just think common sense ain't so common anymore.
We did have some unfortunate instances in Toronto, all involving big off-leash dogs. She was chased by a Rhodesian Ridgeback and literally picked up by a Husky. But that was spread out over years. Peggy’s having half a dozen encounters a day. And Gracie was so much easier to comfort and protect.

Sigh.

We’ll just keep controlling the things we can and coping as best we can with the things we can’t.
 
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