Postings by Rain

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Choosing the Right Dog > Scared to ever adopt rescue dogs again

Rain

The Biggest Wag

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Barked: Mon Dec 30, '13 11:06pm PST 
wave Scruffy my suggestion to you is, if you can at all find the time, **volunteer** at the shelter closest to you or one that you like! This way you get first dibs on dogs that come in. Plus, you'll meet so many dogs, and after getting to know them in that setting, maybe one will prove him/herself to be just the dog for you. (I know there's still the health risks, though...but the temperament questions would be better answered.)

Anyway though, about the "dibs." It's true! Even at the smallest rural shelter, GREAT dogs come in sometimes - and often don't ever end up on Petfinder or such, because they get snapped up immediately by, you guessed it, volunteers at the shelter.

There might be some need, though, to be flexible about timing, if you're going this route. In other words, you have to be ready even if you're "not" - when the right dog comes along! For example, I have Rain. I consider myself a 2-dog person (although of course always with a varying number of fosters), and I already had my 2-dog quota when I met Rain (who was supposed to be a foster). She is a one in a million though. There was no way I was letting her go. So now I'm a 3-dog person....
» There has since been 7 posts. Last posting by Scruffy (R.I.P.), Jan 15 11:17 am

Choosing the Right Dog > Too Much Dog for Me?
Rain

The Biggest Wag

moderator
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 8:57pm PST 
I feel compelled to re-post since I'm the one that brought up the Gentle Leader. I don't want to sound like a salesperson for this thing. It's not like I think everyone and their dog should have it and use it. Just that it's really good for certain owners and situations and seems like it'd be tremendously helpful for you & Stella.

I was introduced to the GL while working in Dogtown at Best Friends Sanctuary in southern Utah. Don't know if you're familiar with the place, but it's the largest no-kill sanctuary in the country. The National Geographic show "Dogtown" is about it. Anyway, they have hundreds of dogs in their care there on any given day, and decades of experience.

Volunteers are a hugely important part of the work of Best Friends. They come from all over the country, every day of the year, and after a brief orientation, they get sent into animal areas to help with every aspect of the daily care routines. One of these, very importantly indeed, is exercising and walking the dogs.

The dogs that were on a Gentle Leader, were on it specifically BECAUSE it was safer for both the dogs and the people. Including the volunteers; many of whom were not very familiar or experienced with dogs at all!!! During my time there, I'm not aware of any injuries to either dogs or people that occurred while a dog was being walked with a GL.

I'm not saying it's impossible for a dog to get injured while being walked on a GL. Of course it's not impossible for a dog to get injured in a flat buckle collar, or any other device. My impression, though, is that the GL is quite safe generally. It's probably a lot less likely for a human to get injured while walking a dog on a GL - since they won't get pulled down, arm-yanked, or what have you. It's very easy on a GL for even a small, lightweight human to have control of a large, strong dog.

Incidentally, another reason that we used Gentle Leaders on some dogs at Best Friends is in the case of dogs who were dog-reactive or -aggressive, or who had extreme prey drive. There are some dogs who roam the property freely during the day as a matter of trust (one of their nicknames is "Trustees"), and there are also so many volunteers walking dogs all over the place. So in the case of dog-aggressive dogs, they couldn't lunge at other dogs if they were being walked on Gentle Leaders. It eliminates lunging and lurching and that sort of behavior.

About losing control of Stella while using the Gentle Leader; that would definitely not happen if you were using the collar correctly (which, like I've said, is not difficult). Just have a knowledgeable salesperson at the store show you exactly how to fit it and put it on her.

I am very careful, too, about trying new tools, and understand your reticence. I might suggest you make sure that the retailer will take back the product and refund your money if you feel uncomfortable after trying it. If they can't do that, maybe the manufacturer themselves (yes, Premier) has a good guarantee. (I don't know if they do...haven't looked into it.) This way you could try it for a few days and see if it is something that works well for you & Stella.


wishes
» There has since been 19 posts. Last posting by Shiver Me Timbers "Charlie", Jan 14 7:05 pm


Choosing the Right Dog > Too Much Dog for Me?

Rain

The Biggest Wag

moderator
 
 
Barked: Fri Jan 4, '13 9:21am PST 
@ Happy - "I'm not a fan of having to train my dog to tolerate a device to make them walk better when I could just spend that energy making my dog walk better on a leash." ...I've strapped a Gentle Leader onto several dogs for the first time they were exposed to it. There really is no "training" involved. If there were, I probably wouldn't be able to use one. I have little training skill. laugh out loud
» There has since been 43 posts. Last posting by Shiver Me Timbers "Charlie", Jan 14 7:05 pm


Choosing the Right Dog > Too Much Dog for Me?

Rain

The Biggest Wag

moderator
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 3, '13 8:45pm PST 
Ok, here goes. My friends may well disagree with me, and I totally respect them, but from my personal POV this is something I needed to say...

I would recommend you go right now and get a Gentle Leader collar for Stella. They're available online or at any big chain pet supply store. I'm only recommending that brand because I have extensive experience with it -- ie. I cannot recommend any other kind of headcollar or device.

I'm posting this as my dog Rain because she wears one. She's incredibly strong for her size and was such the puller on walks. She'd do fine for walking itself, but once she saw something interesting, - a cat running past, a person who might (!) be willing to pet her (!), - forget about it, she just wouldn't quit.

I want to recommend it for you because it will give you immediate relief of your problems with pulling, yanking, lunging, everything during her walks. Walking Stella will become so much more of a pleasure and you will probably find yourself giving her longer and more frequent walks. I think it might do a world of good for your relationship with her.

I know headcollars have their detractors, but the GL works great for me and Rain. And as regards this particular collar being humane, ...I learned about them while working at Best Friends sanctuary in Utah, an organization well known for their high humane standards. (www.bestfriends.org). There, we used GL's on many of the dogs who tended to pull on leash, or otherwise needed additional control on walks.

ETA: I think the cost of a GL is less than $20. So worth it for having peaceful, stress-free walks with the dog!

ETA2: OMD Stella is so cute. She could be Rain's salt and pepper cousin. Rain is also super food motivated. Breed-wise, we believe Rain is Scottish Terrier x Basset Hound.
» There has since been 53 posts. Last posting by Shiver Me Timbers "Charlie", Jan 14 7:05 pm


Behavior & Training > Is it okay to tell your dog "no?"

Rain

The Biggest Wag

moderator
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 18, '12 7:42pm PST 
Rain apparently thinks that "no" is her recall word. I yell it at her when she is about to eat some poo in the yard. And she stops in her tracks and comes charging over to me then. laugh out loud
» There has since been 84 posts. Last posting by , Jun 27 10:07 pm

Rescue, Adoption & Happy Endings > Rain, My Foster Failure
Rain

The Biggest Wag

moderator
 
 
Barked: Mon Aug 1, '11 5:25pm PST 
blue dog

Just wanted to "officially" introduce Rain, the newest member of my personal pack!

You can read her story on her page...basically she's my "foster failure" through Southpaws...thought I was totally immune at this point, but there's an exception to every rule I guess!! red face

Rain is just groovy. Her motto says it all, she has the biggest tail wag, it's so wide and full. She's a remarkably non-issue-y dog. Is a friend to everyone she meets, humans and dogs alike. She's my speed. On the mellow side, even though she's less than a year old, just a puppy. When we're in the backyard, she spends time exploring, but mostly likes to hang out with me, sitting right by my side with my arm around her.

She's a great addition to my "mixed pack" which makes me laugh. Now I have: one short coat, one long fluffy, one curly, and one wire coat dog. The range of colors being white, platinum silver, bicolor, and black. Fun!!


dog
» There has since been 9 posts. Last posting by Murphy, Aug 2 9:33 am

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