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Old 10-17-2009, 12:46 AM
cricketsmygirl's Avatar
cricketsmygirl cricketsmygirl is offline
Angels in waiting....
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 286
Default How far he's come.

While doing some free-shaping with Diesel tonight it occurred to me just how far we'd come since the day I got him. I have to say that I am quite proud of my little boy, he's done well and in turn I believe that I have too although I also know we have a lot of leaps and bounds ahead of us. Training is life long and me and Diesel have a lot to learn. When I first got Diesel he was 8 weeks old, Brought to me by a friend who rescued him from a mean and cruel home. I had recently lost my baby Trouble to Parvo and was very reluctant but everything had been bleached and Diesel had, had at least two shots from what I was told.

Diesel was scared, of everything and barked more then any dog I'd seen, even barked at me. I found out that night he had leash reactivity and I began the journey into something I had NEVER ventured into before. He had a lot of issues, issues with people, dogs, everyone, everything seemed to set him off. At one point he even attacked a tree when leaves fell from it in the wind.

At this point I had no intentions on keeping this pup but instead was going to work with him and rehome him with someone knowledgeable with pit bulls. I had been heartbroken about Trouble, she was young, she was my baby and I missed her. Needless to say I was right to be reluctant to take this pup into my home as he too caught the parvo virus however with help from our vet and a lot of prayer, time and patience he pulled through it closer to me then any other dog I'd ever had. He still had kinks that needed worked out but now there was no saying he wasn't mine. I couldn't rehome him after that.

It took me to month of intense positive reinforcement to get him to stop lunging, barking and snarling when a dog or person came into view while he was on leash (This was ONLY when he was on leash, from what I was told before I received him he was confined to a chain in a backyard and taunted and beaten.) I finally made a breakthrough, his confidence coming through and his love for people and playing with other dogs started to outweigh his fear that someone was going to hurt him. He still has some barking issues however now a quick snap and "Diesel HUSH" is working to silence him in most situations.

I had a hard time training Diesel to do anything those first few months, Recall forget it. Sit? Okay when he wanted to...Down..PFFt Fat chance. This dog, still young was set in his ways and I wondered if I would ever be able to pull him completely out of his shell. Today Diesel is learning easier, not the fastest but learning easier. He loves people, dogs, cats, and FOOD. We can take walks more easily and he knows a series of commands and working on others.

I have talked to a few people here on Chazhound and have decided to enroll him in Obedience classes and then continue into Rally O'. I really believe with some help, support and courage we can do this. Diesel is my heart dog, my big crazy ball of energy. We've worked past most of his issues, we'll work past future ones. I hope you all made it through my crazy little post here. I just thought I would share. Perhaps some other time I will go into a bit more detail on how we made it through but for now just know that we've come a very long way.

Diesel at 2 months first time in our yard:

Diesel Last Month at 7 mo.:

I will have current pictures most likely on Monday...Again thanks for reading and happy trails. For those of you out there having trouble with a dog with issues, know it can be worked through and hopefully you to will find the great dog under the shell.
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