I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!
May 11, 2016
This is Annie, a 2 year Old English Sheep Dog, and the first one of her breed I have walked. She has had a rough couple of months where she didn't know whether she was coming or going, but she is with a very lovely family who have got lots of patience and provide her with stability.
Annie is very nervous and anxious, and when I first met her she wouldn't come near me at all. She just stood out of my reach and watched my every move. I tried treats, encouraging words, just sitting and being patient not pushing myself onto her, and other usual ways of trying to gain a dogs trust, and eventually she gave a little of herself, but only a little.
I couldn't help myself, I immediately felt compassion and love for Annie.
My first few walks with her, Annie was very apprehensive. She was very nervous of many things such as cars passing by, strangers in particular men, other dogs that were over familiar or bark at her, and she would wee when she saw me. I applied lots of patience, when a car passed I would give her lots of praise through tone in my voice and stroking her, if a stranger came close I would talk to her as calmly as I could letting her know I wasn't frightened so she shouldn't be either. By the end of each hour I would see a little more trust in her eyes when she looked at me, and she would sit by me at her house , leaning against my legs and letting me tickle her tummy.
So today I had decided to take both Skylar the Ridgeback and Millie the Rottweiler with me on her walk. Both dogs are young like Annie but both are confident without being over familiar. Once Annie is used to the van she will start coming out on more regular walks with me, traveling to different places but in the mean time I thought I would start with getting her used to my regular doggies. I knew that if I was to introduce her to any of my dogs these were the ones I should start with. I carefully opened the van and let them sniff each other. I got them out one at a time and let them get to know each other.
I took these silly selfies today, she looks very different after her her groom.
Annie relaxed with both Skylar and Millie, appearing to gain confidence whilst walking. She liked Skylar in particular and wanted to walk by her side. And when a car passed instead of her being anxious she took it in her stride. Now she is probably learning so much with her family and becoming more relaxed, but she has to do all this with me too.
Seeing her like this today was just so lovely. Its great when I immediately click with a new dog, but when you meet a dog like Annie it gives you such a sense of achievement to gain their trust. I am really looking forward to many more walks with her.