|Barked: Mon Feb 25, '13 11:35am PST |
|I think I've made a post like this before, but something of a breaking point has been reached and I'm starting to feel very weighed down by it.
I've tried very hard to keep things even between the dogs- Ridley has OB and Tracking, Mulder has Agility and Protection. For a while this was working out fine, and there was a sort of harmony to everything.
But due to miserable luck, literally all of Mulder's activities have been canceled (every agility meet since the beginning of the year almost has been rained out, and the ones that haven't I've had something else going on... and his PP trainer has taken on a lofty contract with a kennel that eats up most of his time). At first I figured Mulder was just bored, so I started working with him more on my own, more one on one hikes, more personal time training. But I still get this feel from him... that he somehow knows I'm still working Ridley (OB is indoor and tracking is rain or shine), and resents me for it.
Mulder's obedience has deteriorated to pathetically bad levels. He doesn't even want to listen to me anymore. Things that usually are a no brainer for him, he blatantly disregards. I've tried to tighten the reigns on him more, go back to reinforcing EVERYTHING, not letting the little things slide like I used to... but that just seems to be driving him farther away. If he refuses a recall, and I physically walk over to go get him, he turns away from me and wont even look me in the eye. If I put him on a long line and do the same thing, I literally have to drag him to me, and the next time I call he doesn't even acknowledge I've said anything.
I know getting back to working him would make things better, but I'm not a magician... I can't make the rain stop, and I can't dissolve my PP's other contracts.
Ridley is doing so marvelously, from a training standpoint he is marvelous, his tracking instructor thinks he will be ready to trial and title by the fall, and my OB trainer is very impressed with him. He has become the golden child... but while I love Ridley immeasurably, he is not my Mulder... and I find it hard to live with myself knowing Mulder doesn't want anything to do with me right now.
I'm sure that's a stupid sentiment to be having this late in the game... Mulder will be 5 in the summer, we should be past this. But I walk in this dog's shadow, to have him sore at me hurts in a way I'm almost embarrassed to admit.
Its more a personal vent of my own sadness over this issue. I don't know if there is a "fix" to any of this besides getting him back to work, but maybe someone has other ideas of how to at least cope with the feeling.
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