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Aandi's Achievements


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  1. What do you mean by "the debunked science of dominance theory"? I don't ask in sarcasm or anything. Just curious about what you're referring to. haven't heard of a theory or in turn of one being debunked.
  2. I'll check that book out. About watching that handler, I think that was what made the light bulb light up regarding all of this. He wasn't even "trying" he was just being, commanding, and that's it. Watching him with Brick was so infuriating. No joke. Brick listened better to this stranger within 5 minutes than he has with me in all of my efforts over 10 months. He wasn't mean or aggressive, but he definitely was"in charge". Brick knew it and "respected" it. I think the most frustrating part for me was that I used to "behave" more like that handler and had moved away from that from hearing "you're strict", "you're not 'loving'", etc. I'm like..so you're telling me, I was doing fine and left that in the dust because I listened to people who have unruly dogs, because I couldn't handle some criticism.......
  3. I had to look up NILIF. I didn't realize there was a "term" for that kind of training. Learn something new every day. I guess it wasn't so much seeking validation as it was sharing having had an experience that led to a desired result. I was excited. Still am. I think Maralyn hit it on the head with the change in my perspective of the situation having given me a new confidence and that playing into positive results and interactions. (still trying to figure out how to do all the individual quotes, etc) You're definitely right. I have been overwhelmed and I feel that's where i was falling short in handling Brick. I was constantly questioning myself. When I spoke to this trainer, I realized that I've let others' (not here. i pursued advice here) opinions of how to handle a dog sway me and had moved away from my natural way of doing things. He'd ask, "Why do you think you should do that?" and I'd say, "Well, I had a friend tell me they thought this.." All in all, I think that was the main problem. Brick was getting from me behavior that I had "implemented" not my behavior for who I am. I think it was definitely playing a part in all of our interactions. The trainer told me to do me. Be me. Handle him the way I saw fit. That if I was wrong, the results would show it for what it was. The dog would forgive me. I'd do better and life would go on. "Me" isn't jumping out of bed every 2 hours to let a dog outside. "Me" isn't afraid to be stern in telling a dog to shut up and go back to sleep for fear of ...i dunno... being "dominant" or "uncaring" etc. And you didn't come across rude
  4. I'm actually with you and wasn't (not sure am now) sure how to word that. Basically, the situation we were in was Brick would "act" as if he had to go potty, I'd stand there for the 5 minutes waiting in once place (as to not be going exploring, on a walk, etc) and wait every....... you name it. Some nights he'd wake me up 5 times a night to "go potty". I was allowing him to "dictate" what was happening when. Not because he was "dictating" but because he had learned that if he behaved a certain way it would get him a result he wanted. I guess that's it guys. That's all it is. The understanding that our relationship had come to just that. He had learned he could behave in this way or that to get results he wanted and I was clueless. Now I'm saying, "No, I know you're just dancing around to go potty because you want me to walk my happy butt outside while you sniff the air. I just took you. You're fine. Lay back down and go to sleep. I'll take you out in the morning." AND for him to know that it's my decision to do so and not his through his behavior. Still not sure I'm making sense. The dog isn't afraid of me. I don't feel like I have to dictate his every move. I do, however, realize how I was allowing my every move to be "dictated" (for lack of a better term) and am not going to allow that moving forward. I have a brain. He's a dog. I'm going to use it and he's going to be fine not having "his own way". (Ie. learning to lay back down and go to sleep instead of incessantly whining until he got let outside. )
  5. I love hearing the progress. Nice work. Looking forward to digging in.
  6. Hey Jack, thanks for sharing your thoughts with being "mean". I honestly thought I was in the "middle ground" as you mentioned. Truly. I've never been one to treat a dog as a child, but hadn't seen the situation as far as this either. I don't believe the dog is "manipulative" or "dictating" etc. I do, however, believe that the dog was in a mindset of "boss". I think there is a middle ground within this perspective, as well. I do believe a dog behaving that was is part of a dog's instinctive behaviors as a DOG. Honestly, it does feel extreme to me. I agree with that. However, the situation was already (and had started) in a place where I feel a bit of "extreme" is necessary to prevent this hairy situation from turning extremely bad. (more biting, etc). I hope you're wrong, too. I can see where you could be right, though. I am definitely moving forward in an "eyes open", analytical, loving way. Again..thanks for sharing your perspective in an honest, yet still kind, way.
  7. Thanks, moo. I was feeling bad about the hair brush incident. I've never been one to be "physical" with an animal. I think this is only a start but a good a good one. Looking forward to a much calmer, happier future. Wow, it really sounds like you made both of your lives considerably better. I'm very impressed that you were able to follow through and retrain Brick. And don't feel bad about the hair brush incident...We had a broom scenario that was very similar that I still feel pretty guilty about sometimes until I remember that my dog has absolutely no recollection of it because she was in beast mode and I was in panic mode and that's not our normal state or behavior.
  8. So, I know there are people all across the board here on "dominant/submissive" rights and wrongs, etc. I'm not looking to start a controversy. Just thought I'd share my experience in case it helps someone else. Was truly at my limits with the SA and looking at having to re-home Brick (bit hubby while I was gone. wouldn't leave front door and hubby was trying to bring dog back upstairs to within gated area - no skin breakage). He gets so wound up once in that state of panic, he's not "right". I reached out to a friend who has a lot of rescue/training connections. Explained that I'm limited financially (and due to others) for getting the dog "help". She connected me to someone willing to barter services (book keeping for training). Turns out the man lives 5 minutes up the road and is a stock dog trainer (who trains using "pressure and release"). Got to see Brick in a pen with sheep. He has some drive, but it's not "what he lives for". In the short time we were there, this man observed Brick and I and flat out said, "He's spoiled." I heard him, but didn't quite grasp the concept. I see my self as a strong personality, not easily told what to do. WRONG. This dog dictates my every move. I had humanized him and subjected myself to his whims, without knowing it. This trainer made it clear that so long as Brick is in charge, things would not change. He explained that "taking charge" is not about being aggressive or mean. It's simply about who's boss. Brick does not get to tell me what to do through barking, whining, jumping around, etc. He gets fed and let to bathroom when I allow, not when he demands. He warned that the transition may bring out some aggression from Brick. Transition from one leader to another tends to do that. I didn't believe this would happen for us. I truly thought Brick and I had made a lot of progress and were "bonded", "on the same page", etc. Brought brick home. Told him to "go to bed", which means to lay in his crate (pressure). He did. (release) Then he came out. Told him, again (pressure). Did not listen. Moved forward to give more "pressure" he "gave". (release) Came out again. Did not listen, did not "give" to body movement, so I held. Just when it looked like he was going to "give" he snapped. I bit back. I had a hair brush in my hand and met him before he caught my leg. (This was not thought out. I was going to be bit and reacted. There was no time to think. Just reflex) He instantly went in and laid down. (Here come the critics..."you asked for it" "you did this wrong" "you're abusive" yada yada. I said I knew there would be varying views. You keep yours. Read on. There's more) From that moment on, when I gave a verbal command, he obeyed. Now for the real kicker. Normally, Brick will not let me out of his sight. He whines and barks incessantly if I am. It turned out I needed to run outside to my car to look for something. Gave the verbal "lay", "stay" leaving him behind the gate upstairs. Ran downstairs, out the door and searched in the car for a minute. Walked back in to silence. Asked hubby if he had whined/barked. Hubby said he hadn't. Went back upstairs and he was in the same place, still lying down, completely calm and relaxed. This isn't separation anxiety. This is "You're too far away for me to tell you what to do" anxiety. Summary: There was a major problem. I've found a solution (whether everyone agrees it's right, wrong, anything in between or not, it's working). The dog gets to stay in a home where he is loved and cared for. He also gets to live and function in a relaxed and calm state rather than in a panic- This means the most to me. This is what he needs. Him not having THIS is what was abusive and mean. I was honestly afraid to share, because I'm sure there are some who will tear into me, but I really hope this can help someone else struggling to live life with a dog who has "SA". I also know that this is not the "cause" of SA for every other dog out there suffering from it. Hoping it can help those who are, though.
  9. Keeping the undercoat to a minimum helping, makes sense. I'll be sure to keep at his brushing. Thanks guys
  10. I love it. Definitely enjoying learning so much. Trooper is just "showing respect" as a half mast kinda boy lol I'm starting to appreciate Brick's tail. I found it awkward at first. Instead of being at a pretty "J" or nice "apostrophe" like zombie's here, he would let the tip hang off to his right. It was just kind of frumpy looking. It seems, as his confidence is building, he's not letting the tip slump so much. I guess that's why I was curious about tails..wondering if anyone else had experienced a dog going from insecure/frumpy to confident/shapely? That and how everyone else deals with the aspect of burrs....I can't take that dog anywhere without him finding them. Drives me bonkers.
  11. Love it. Good reminder to take into consideration all the facets. I turned into the babbling idiot on this one.
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