Thursday, August 2, 2012

Thankful Thursday - For Bella

I wasn't planning to post today but, in light of the seriousness of recent posts here on Bringing up Bella, I thought you'd all like to see a short video of Bella in her reactive dogs agility class last night. We were all very, very proud of her.


We've been working a long time to get Bella comfortable with some of these obstacles. Today she even showed some excitement about the opportunity to run a course.

Willie, Bella's "Agility for Reactive Dogs" classmate, is on the other side of the gate visible in the doorway behind the tunnel. He was a very good boy while she ran the course and Bella wasn't even remotely distracted by him being there. This was a HUGE accomplishment for both of them.

So we are thankful for Bella's resilience, enthusiasm and curiosity, our trainers' patience and wisdom and all the good people out there researching and advocating for better ways to help fearful dogs, not only cope, but actually thrive.



25 comments:

  1. Good girl!  She looks great and looks like she's really enjoying it!

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  2. This is so impressive!! Way to go, Bella!

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  3. Prudence & TheresaAugust 2, 2012 at 2:20 PM

    Yay Bella! We love watching agility dogs!

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  4. Georgia Little PeaAugust 2, 2012 at 4:58 PM

    This is the same dog that's scared of flies? (if I remember correctly.) Well done both of you! :)

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  5. Wow! Great job!

    I remember the first time you posted video of getting her to go through a tunnel and chute. It was only a few feet long. I can't believe how far she's come.

    I wonder if I can get Honey to watch it for inspiration?

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  6. She really seems happy to be working with you, and that's doubly awesome, since you said there was another dog within site. Nice job!

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  7. Dachshund Nola and her MomAugust 2, 2012 at 9:36 PM

    YAY Bella!!
    Nola

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  8. Yay! That was so exciting! It's so great that you have found such a wonderful trainer ;) Go Bella!

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  9. she did such a good job!!! I sure wish we had something like that for Dakota....he needs it terribly. Shelties are naturally reticent, we aren't big "dog park" people so he doesn't care for other dogs much (and doesn't react to them in a nice way sometimes)...I know it is our fault that we don't socialize him more but he just doesn't like it!

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  10. This video is so much fun to watch! It's easy to tell that Bella is really enjoying herself. It made me smile to see how far she has come. Agility is so wonderful for building confidence. It's fantastic there are classes in your area that specialize in dogs who need that extra time and space. Congratulations!

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  11. Amazing, Bella! She looked so confident! What a great video, thank you so much for sharing your victory. Congratulations to you, to Bella, and to everyone else who helped her get there. :)

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  12. Love how Bella wags her way through the course, even through the tunnel! It's amazing to see how well all the prep work paid off. You all did an awesome job!

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  13. Hey Bella, Jet here.  Hi Miss Leslie.

    OMD! Congrats Bella, you rock... thanks for sharing your video.  You must feel so proud of such a major accomplishment.  :)  You could certainly teach me a thing or two or three... I'm a bit fearful myself.  (noises predominantly)...

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  14. Hey Jet, we sure are proud of her. And I don't think I show it in this video but she was obviously proud of herself as well. :)

    Bella's biggest hurdle was noise-phobia as well. To be honest, we finally had to put her on a very, very low-dose med to give her some peace.  (She would flee a room in panic if an acorn dropped on the roof.)  I'll be talking about meds over the next few Mondays here.  But this class she is taking has done so much for her confidence in general that we're hopeful we'll be able to take her off the meds at some point in the future.

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  15. I didn't even notice the tail until you mentioned it.  Hee.  Her tail always wags - but yeah, she was definitely having fun this night.

    Oh and if you think the tunnel took work, she only started going over the dog walk a month or two ago.  It took us MONTHS to get her all the way over it - a couple inches at a time.  :o  Now look at her. :)

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  16. This has been the best confidence-building experience for her that we could ever have imagined.  We do a lot of the work at home though, so you could possibly do it with D.  (Pamela at Something Wagging built her own equipment to work with Honey - not sure if that's a possibility for you but it might be worth looking at her blog for ideas....)

    I don't go out of our way to 'socialize' Bella any more.  That's just not going to be her thing.  All I need her to be able to do is survive the vet's office so we're working on keeping her comfortable when she sees other dogs for a limited amount of time in a controlled setting. Having a social dog is wonderful but I'm not sure every dog has to be.  If D is comfortable in your home and you don't have a million dogs traipsing through, then what's the harm, right? Confidence, yes. Social? Only if necessary, I think.  Just some thoughts...

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  17. LOL - yes, the very same. :)  (FTR, she is still afraid of flies.  That's one we're just going to have to live with. ;)  But yeah, she's come a long way.

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  18. Go Bella! You guys are so inspiring. :)

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  19. Ahem... looks like someone is trying to keep up with Bella rather than the other way around. We are truly happy that Bella is doing well. I may not know how awful her owner-aggressive tendencies became but this is quite a breath of fresh air.

    I'm sorry I haven't had time to email you Leslie... we'd gone to the vet today because Chooey has growths on her mouth (the vet thinks it's Canine Herpes). While Buchi has redness on his little boy area ( the vet says we are lucky to have noticed it before it became infected). Now, he is wearing the cone of shame. But I'd rather have him that way than have him suffer the pain of an infected...thingy.

    I might get back to you about his aggressive tendencies as correcting him will probably proceed once he gets better.

    Huggies and Cheese,

    Haopee

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  20. Wow wow wow! Bella, you're doing great! What a show! You're so lucky to have a human that wants to work with you and help you overcome your fears, and in such a fun way! WHOOP WHOOP! You'll be winning prizes soon! *wag wag wag*

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  21. Bella looks amazing!  Is she a shy dog?  Here she looks pawsome and so brave.

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  22. Wow! Bella did GREAT! She really looked like she was having a good ol' time! Congrats to all of you! :D

    Waggin at ya,
    Roo

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  23. LOL - yeah, mom was definitely falling behind that night.  :]

    No worries about emailing.  You may find you get all the information you need from Buchi himself - if he's been uncomfortable or even just a little sore, that could certainly contribute to his grouchiness.  

    Glad both dogs have had their issues identified and are being treated.  That's usually the hardest part. 

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  24. Honestly, I don't think I'd call Bella shy.  Fearful, cautious, wary - absolutely.  And that's actually part of what made treating/training her difficult for us.  There's lots of info online on how to work with fearful dogs. Or how to work with shy dogs.  There's not a lot of info on how to work with fearful curious dogs.  :]  It's been a steep learning curve and we're thankful to have a behaviorist and a trainer who are experienced with such.

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