~ The Ups and Downs–We are Finally Trained!
–As with ever Weimaraner, it is a work in progress.
I wanted to send an update on Henry. It’s been a while. The last I emailed I was asking for help regarding Henry growling when he was in a cozy spot on the couch or our bed. We ultimately decided that we did not know how to manage the behavior and sought out professional help.
We learned that he was resource guarding. He had always done this with a full bowl or food and we just left him alone while he ate. Along the way Henry had also developed other bad habits, like counter surfing, barking incessantly, and greeting company way to enthusiastically.
You know better than most that weims are very hard headed, and Henry is no exception. Henry boarded with a trainer for one month, and during that time worked on better leash manners, recall, and ways to stop resource guarding. We knew that we he came home it would be like having a puppy in training all over again, but it has been so worth it. He is a new man!! One of the things we are doing is hand feeding him, we use feeding time to practice skills like going and staying on his rug, here, and heal. We also have a leash on him at all times while out of his crate, that way if he growls, or doesn’t listen, we have a way to control him. We don’t expect to have to use the leash for long, but it has been a great tool to reestablish the hierarchy in our home. Prior to training, Henry would stay for as long as you wanted him to only when incentivized by food, otherwise he would get up two seconds later. Now he will stay for long periods of time without food rewards. If I am in the kitchen, he goes to his rug and stays. Another improvement is leash walking. We used to either take Henry leashless on his training collar or with a gentle leader (we called it his soul crusher because he hated it), now we take him on his regular collar , and sometime with a training collar–with a leash around my waist.
He is still a work in progress, but the fact that I can take him on his regular collar and his doesn’t pull is amazing. He does need occasional reminders to heel, sometimes he listens without any correction, other times he needs a reminder. Henry is chomping at the bit when he knows we are going for a walk. Since we always have him on a leash, he is unable to counter surf. Barking is very minimal now, not sure how or why, but he gives us a few warning barks, then stops, thank God!!
He has not had to wear his bark collar since he came home. We will continue to work on greeting guests, but as you can imagine during such times, we don’t have many. The few times we have, we have let the company know ahead of time that Henry is in training, and to bear with us as we slowly let them in. This is a work in progress, but all has drastically improved.
The moral to my update, it took 4.5 years for Henry to develop bad habits, and years of us not dealing with it correctly. He is smart, and did everything in his power to outsmart us, so now we are in training together!!
Weims are not an easy breed, as you know, but Henry is so worth the time investment. He is the sweetest guy ever, and the best snuggle buddy.
Thank you for all you do and are doing with Henry. Each Weimaraner presents with challenges (much like various human siblings)–and somehow, they know how to find our weaknesses and how to push our buttons, too. The conundrum of the relationship should never be discounted–and this is where we say, better now than later to have managed the issues. The Weimaraner tends to wrap their paw around a person, manipulate the situation to their liking–and it is hardly in their best interest. Ah, and Cliff is thrilled you have moved to the flat color and are doing well. Keep up the excellent work.
Posted on December 30, 2020, in Behavior & Training, Collars and Slip Leads, Information and Education, Mousse X Stackhouse, Previous Pup Update, Training and tagged Family Companion, Family Weimaraner. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.
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