When You've Been Told There's No Hope For Your Dog
It is awful when another dog attacks your beloved pup. It is also distressing to see the growing anxiety and behavioural issues that your dog can develop out of that trauma. Imagine then being told your dog can't be helped. That's what happened to Armen's family, and their dog Ollie. They watched helplessly as another dog viciously attacked poor Ollie in a park, when he was just a puppy. They sought help from other trainers when he started showing worrisome behaviour, like aggression toward other dogs, and even some people.
My wife and I were really down as the two previous trainers did not offer any realistic advice and actually 'fired' us as clients.
They were told that Ollie should be medicated. Another trainer told them they should give Ollie away, as he was beyond help. Those trainers even refused to work with the family any further. However, the reality was that Ollie's aggression was only borne out of lingering fear which no one had yet addressed.
Aggressive behaviour never comes out of nowhere. Once our Montréal Rive-Nord trainer, Alex, had taught Ollie's humans how to communicate with Ollie in a way he readily understood, they could begin the work of letting him know he didn't have to be afraid. Convincing Ollie he could trust his humans to keep him safe meant he could begin to relax, and stop freaking out whenever they encountered another dog or a stranger. Armen just wanted to be able to take his dog for a walk without him pulling, and to feel confident he wouldn't attack anyone outside the household.
My family and I are relieved and thankful for Alex as he came in to our house open minded, mission oriented, receptive, understanding and accommodating.
Ollie deserved to get this help. There is still more work ahead, but his humans now feel like they have a handle on what to do to keep him calm, and assuage his fears. Too often, dogs that become aggressive are then written off. Or, if they do ultimately bite someone, they can even be destroyed. When you can identify the cause of the fears, and communicate in language the dog understands, you can keep them in their families, take away their stress, and ultimately even save their lives.
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