Thursday, January 26, 2012

Puppy Training - Class #2

To read about Class #1...go here!

So Monday of this week rolled around, and the closer it got to 6:00pm the more anxiety I was feeling.  I had debated not going back EVER, but I couldn't give up after just one class, considering there were no refunds for "drop-outs".

I put Lainey in the car and off we went.  We arrived to class and parked the car.  Before I even opened the door to let her out, I took a deep breath and tried to find a way to send positive vibes through the leash.  Lainey and I got out of the car and quickly noticed that everyone was standing outside waiting for the door to be unlocked. I quickly had flashbacks of last week and I nearly turned right around to get back in the car.  Of course, I decided against leaving and slowly worked my way up to the door to stand around amongst the other dogs and their owners.  Lainey did fairly well in the group, but as soon as we walked through the door it was a disaster.

Immediately she started pulling me towards the toy corner.  She was already draining me of every ounch of strenth I had.  We made it to our designated spot in the circle and she WOULD.NOT.STOP.PULLING!  Class hadn't officially started yet and I was already mere seconds away from tears.  Just as I had made the decision that this class wasn't going to work for us and we needed to leave immediately, one of the trainers approached me.  She asked me if I was okay and I broke down.  I explained that this class wan't going to work for me...I was too physically and mentally exhausted to put myself through another hour of torture.  She pulled me aside to discuss what was going on and I explained how Lainey becomes a totally different dog when we enter this room than what she is at home.....and that's when EVERYTHING CHANGED!!

The trainer asked me about my feelings toward a choke/pinch collar and if I would be willing to try one out for that night.  I desparately agreed to try one since nothing else seemed to be working.  IT WAS A MIRACLE!  One of the trainers held her while the other trainer slipped the collar on her.  As soon as her leash was snapped onto the new collar she became a whole new dog.  She immediately stopped pulling and sat there all prim and proper.  You could feel the tension and the stress release from her body (and mine).

Lainey was so well-behaved with her new pinch collar that the trainers were using her as the "example dog" for all of their lessons, and.oh.my.god.she.was.a.perfect.dog!!!!  I was able to successfully complete every task that was given to us for the remainder of the evening.  She never barked again and not once tried to pull on the leash.  I truly witnessed a miracle!

Even the gentleman who stands beside us (who has a perfect puppy) leaned over to me and whispered, "had I not seen it with my own eyes, I wouldn't have believed it".  Yes!  This is the vision I had all along and it was finally coming true.

The next evening after arriving home from work, I put on the pinch collar and took her for a walk.  It was amazing.  I was able to hold the leash with only one finger and it was drooping loose beside us.  I was now in tears because I was so happy.

I know some people may have strong feelings towards the use of choke/pinch collars, but for me and my puppy, it is a MIRACLE collar.

1 comment:

KT said...

I'm so glad that your second class went great! We had to put Buster into a harness instead of a regular collar/leash combo b/c otherwise he would pull too much and could damage his throat. Trainers can work wonders! :-)