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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Turning the tables

I've decided that I need to turn the tables on the dominance in my house.  At present Leloo is the leader of the pack when my husband is gone.  I've known this for a long time, but in the last few days I've been channeling the dog whisper and have been practicing calm, assertive presence.  I want to be the pack leader and I'm not going to quit until I am.  Today Leloo has thrown at least two fits, but I'm learning to stay calm and make her do what I want no matter what.  She has this thing about rolling on the floor like a crocodile if she doesn't want to do something.  The Dog Whisper says not to get frustrated, but to stay calm and stick with it.  No matter how much they fight in the end they will have to do as you say.  I shouldn't feel bad, because she will respect me in the end.  I have to watch an episode or two of the Dog Whisper to remind myself.
We've (I've) been doing great at making sure she gets her exercise everyday.  I think she's getting used to the mile, so I may have to increase the distance.  I can't fall back into the old patterns of just keeping her happy and placate her bad behavior to just get through.  I've always had issues with walking her, because of the pulling.  That hasn't changed, but the last few days as soon as she starts that I pull her back to me and hold her by the collar until she walks a straight line.  It's still a work in progress. 
The reason we've picked up the pace with walks everyday is because there are too many untrained and unruly dogs with clueless owners at the dog park.  It's sad, but I just can't take a chance.  Every once in awhile I may breakdown and take her, but for now we're going to take walks everyday.  I liked taking her to the park more so than walks because of how hard it is to walk her.  At the park she got socialization and she got to run.  Unfortunately because of at least one bad dog/bad owner we just can't have fun there.
The other issue we have is Leloo flipping out when she seeing birds or rabbits.  I don't know what she would do if she actually caught them, but I really don't want to find out.  I've been doing "No" with a small yank on the leash when I see her searching the tall grass.  I'm not sure yet what to do other than pull back when a bunny jumps out in front of us.  All I can do at this point hold onto the reigns.  Other husky owners know exactly what I'm talking about.
Wish me luck on my quest to be pack leader!!!!

3 comments:

  1. Is always beautiful reading your adventures.
    Have a nice day.
    Woof, woof,

    Chicco

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  2. I totally get the pulling with walking! Koda isn't able to go for runs or to the dog park since he still has his stitches from getting fixed. I've been told that a gentle lead leash helps to keep them from pulling, but i haven't tried it yet. If the dog parks aren't safe then you might want to try and look into doggie daycare. It does cost money but they are supervised and Koda always comes home exhausted :)

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  3. I think Suka is a bad influence then on Leloo! Suka does everything you are trying to get Leloo not to do! I would probably be one of the unruly ones at the dog park. :-> Suka was on an expandable leash, so he was able to go all over when we walked, and he loved meeting dogs and people, so I let him. But if I noticed an owner who did not want my dog near them, or their dog, then I would pull Suka close to me until we passed.

    My dog previous to Suka was part Malamute, so I learned early on that Malamutes have a natural dominance nature and are extremely independent. So, I lead the Pack when I can, but there are times when Suka's natural independence comes into play and no matter what I say or do, he will not budge. It was that way with my previous dog as well.

    Regarding little creatures, my previous dog went wild upon seeing bunnies and other furry critters, and would pull me so hard that I actually would fall to the ground. Suka is the same way, but has never made me fall as I learned how to hold the leash to prevent such an incident from happening again (keep it very close and very tight!).

    Good luck on training! I hope Leloo calms down for you and you are able to accomplish your training goals. You seem to have a good plan of action so I am sure you will achieve Pack Leader status with her. :->

    K and Suka

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