Marion has had Bella since she was a puppy and loves her so much. However, Bella’s excitable nature makes it quite difficult for Marion to handle her. Marion is now on her own with Bella due to recently losing her husband of 62 years to COVID. He loved Bella and helped Marion a lot, but now Marion is finding herself struggling to control her alone. Her son, who also aided in helping, is now no longer able to help due to unforeseen circumstances. Money is tight due to relying on her husband’s salary and she needs all the help she can get!
Bella needs some work on leash manners and greeting people. She also gets quite nervous around noises or when she is exposed to new situations. She feels the comfort in her own home and needs to grow in confidence. Overall, we need Bella to be under control at all times, obedient, and generally calmer for her owner so she can live happily with Bella.
On session one, we worked on teaching Bella to walk nicely at our side. This was a little bit difficult for her since she hasn’t been able to walk calmly in a long time, she was a bit nervous but we had some success by the end of the lesson. We also worked on our correction process for unwanted behaviors that Marion is not a fan of! At the end of the session, we helped mom apply for our Gives Back program and spent a long time talking about how much Bella means to her.
On lesson 2, we prioritized starting obedience to help gain control of excitable Bella. We taught her sit and also our sit stay command! We also started working on front door manners to ensure that guests can be welcomed into their home without chaos! Bella is set off by the doorbell, so we were able to practice calming her down at the door and utilizing obedience so mom could answer the door and welcome a guest in. Bella definitely tested mom quite a bit because she loves people coming over!
Lesson 3 we spend the majority of our time outside walking Bella. We wanted Marion to be as comfortable as possible walking Bella, since walks are so important in a dog’s life! Bella definitely struggled with being calm and not nervous, but overall we were able to gain some ground in having mom be more comfortable walking her with a lot of encouragement and praise to build Bella’s confidence.
We were finally able to get Bella around the block! Bella grew confidence to go past 4 houses and mom hasn’t been able to do that in 2 years! We also worked on sit stay by the garage when family comes in, greetings inside the house and greetings out on leash. Overall, this was our most productive lesson yet and Bella made great strides!
On the fifth appointment, Marion’s granddaughter showed up and helped Bella with greetings in the house as well as outside. Her granddaughter also helped walking around the block with Mom and Bella because Mom was having a bit of a hard time handling Bella. Bella still is working on controlled and confident walks!
Her sixth appointment we worked on commands outside as well as walking around the block and greetings outside. Mom has still had some difficulty going around the block by herself, she’s determined though and I know she can do it! Bella still has a lot of fear of being outside and walking around the block, has been gaining confidence and it’s becoming easier each time that we work outside together!
On lesson 7, we acclimated Bella to e-collar to give her mom more control of her since she struggles to handle her at times. E-collar will be able to help bridge the gap in their communication and help them work better together. We also worked on correcting if she leans on someone when greeting or jumping and recall in the yard! Go Bella!
On lesson 8, we worked obedience outside in the front yard, back yard, and greetings from the garage door. Mom is unfortunately not able to walk Bella so we are focusing more time on working her obedience and greetings. Mom is happy with Bella’s progress and was able to have her out with family the whole visit and got compliments from family members!
Bella did great! She’s listening to all of Mom’s commands. She is becoming so much better at greetings. She gave me the biggest submissive smiles and tons of wags with no jumping! She is more focused on mom and they have grown a tight bond! She’s also behaving when mom’s at work.