My Yogi had a play date recently with our former foster and his protégé, Journey. Her name is now Charli – and it suits her, but I have a hard time re-training myself. She is forever Journey to me.
She has grown, but not too much.
She is loved (that can never be too much).
But in one way, she has returned to her old self.
It seems that our
Journey Charli has fallen back into her old habits: greeting her friends with tugs and pinches and take-downs.
We spent a good amount of time working that out of her, and I thought that her much larger visiting canine cousin would keep her in line.
But it seems that even he has given up delivering the kind of correction that Charli needs.
I suggested that she come back to class with her mom, and I hope she does. Her mom is completely smitten with Charli – I’m so glad for that. But her last dog was extremely reactive and she desperately wants to have a dog that can play with other pups. I could tell that she was a little embarrassed by Charli’s behavior. Not that Yogi is any angel. Set loose in the house, he immediately jumped up and helped himself to the human treats on the counter! Way to humiliate your mom, boy!
In school, Charli and her mom would be surrounded by people who know all about her play style and how to administer a time out when needed. Mom would get reassurance, as well. Everyone in class has been through something that made them shrink at some point.
What Charli needs is practice with dogs that are happy to issue corrections in a safe environment – and consistency until a more socially-acceptable play style truly becomes second nature to her.
I hope to see them in school. Charli has shown us that she has it in her.
“Believing takes practice.” ~ Madeleine L’Engle