I make hundreds of visits to people’s homes every year to help them with their dogs. There was one in particular that I will never forget.
Although I live in NYC, this time I was in LA, at the Pacific Palisades.
Her name was Rochelle and she had three dogs: a German Shepherd and two Vizlas. The main problem was stranger human aggression with the German Shepherd.
In other words, I can get bitten.
Rochelle explained that she’d worked with 3 other dog trainers already and they all literally gave up on Ellwood, the German Shepherd.
It took some guts to say “Yes, I can help!”
But I knew I could.
So, when I get there and I ring the bell the two Vizlas start barking and running towards me after she opens a glass sliding door. If you think that was the problem you are wrong.
Two seconds later she walks out the door with Ellwood, lounging, barking and pulling the leash full force towards me dragging the poor lady.
While I´m taking care of the Vizlas, and she is getting dragged by Ellwood which is clearly trying to eat me for breakfast, she starts shouting at me: “ As you can see I have a problem”.
I thought to myself: YEAH!, no kiddin´ you have a problem!
Anyways, I told her to walk back to her house with Elwood. And as soon as he relaxed a little bit, I didn´t wait one second, I got the leash and took him for a walk.
It literally took him 5 minutes to relax and trust me. And this is not me saying it, this is Rochelle´s comment:
I quote. “OMG! After 5 minutes with Gabriel, Ellwood was behaving and listening to Gabriel…”
That´s how important a simple walk can be.
After that, the training session went very smooth and we could work on Ellwood. Rochelle picked up pretty fast on the training and it was life changing for her and for her family:
Two weeks later I received an email from her:
“ … Gabriel you are truly a God send for Ellwood and my family. I no longer just write Ellwood off as the worst dog ever. He is the best dog ever! Thank you Gabriel! For everything. Ellwood, the girls and my husband thank you too. We have a quiet house with no more barking and shouting”
Get the important things right and the rest will sort itself out.
And that’s how powerful a simple walk can be. There is no magic here, but there is knowledge and deep understanding of how to bond with a dog. I use this technique over and over again with very problematic dogs and it always works.
Note: What you will learn here it´s way more than just dog training. You´d be amazed how much personal and spiritual growth you can gain by understanding the relationship with your dog by just knowing how to walk!!
I will be posting more blogs about how to walk your pup and the importance of doing it right!
I hope this brings you more dog wisdom and awareness in your relationship with FIDO.
© Gabriel Riesco, Fairfield CT, 2017