I recently met a rescue dog who had only been with his new family, an elderly couple, for about 10 days. And I was the second trainer there.
The previous trainer did not approve of the dog being in the house (he needed house training), did not want the dog to be on the lap, wanted to feed a different diet (caused diarrhea) and worst of all, recommended to ‘baw’ at the dog if he did something wrong.
Guess what, this ‘baw’ caused the dog to be scared of the male owner, he was the only one doing it, and the dog would not approach or interact with him any more. The dog also did not learn anything, well except being scared and confused.
This is very sad! A rescue dog in a new home. At least give the dog and the owner a chance. They need to build up a trusting relationship, they need help with house training and they need advice on how to teach the dog to behave in their home.
We do not need to bully the dog and tell these poor people the dog cannot live in the house or be on their lap.
As trainers we need to give our clients tools to deal with their situation and their dog! We are not there to ‘tell them how it is done’. Every situation is different and requires a personalized approach.
Oh yes and by the end the dog interacted with the male owner, did sit and lie down, came when called and was sitting happily on the lap. House training will take a little while but he will make a great companion for this couple! And that is exactly why they got him!
One of the comments about this on the Facebook page was: Is this a time travelling trainer from the 70ies? And that is spot on!