Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Trainer Called

The trainer called tonight to ask how Behr was doing. I was happy to report I've been walking both him and Jade at the same time without any problems.

The trainer was very nice, but in short he said Behr will fail the Canine Good Citizen Test tonight, so you don't have to come. I told him I wanted to. I talked to Will and then I called the trainer back to tell him thanks for saving me the gas across town and that we won't come.

I'm bummed. Even though I knew he couldn't accept a stranger or another dog. I was still hopeful and looking forward to going, even just to see him pass a few items.

I think it just kinda hurt my pride, or my hope for Behr. We have grown so much closer just from taking this class, which makes me very happy just getting that from the class, no CGC is okay.
I didn't want to lose this, so I'm adding it here.
A great internet friend, that I've also met IRL wrote this to me about this post:

I know I don't know Behr like you and Tommy do, but from an outsider's perspective, he really is a good dog. You guys just have very high expectations (which is awesome, because you are working towards getting him where you want him to be) but you should know that when I look at Behr I see a good, intelligent, very well behaved typical young GSD with energy to burn. He knows more commands than my Maggie who I've had for almost 7 years now- he's just very clear letting other dogs and people know that he sees them when he's on leash!

I've walked Behr and Buddy with you before and I remember being shocked because I thought they both behaved so well! Sure, they tugged at the leash and barked sometimes, but that's no worse than Maggie constantly getting underfoot and coming close to killing me except that she doesn't frighten people when she does it. And you and DH are awesome for spending the fortune you're spending on getting him to the level you want him to be at. Other people might be afraid of him but honestly I think that has to do as much with his breed and size as his behavior- when I've seen him bark at things, it's not in an "I'm-going-to-eat-you" way, it's just an alert bark. We took Maddie to Ben and Jerry's free cone day yesterday and people moved away from us downtown and gave us the side eye, and she's not even close to as big as your boys! People associate GSDs with police dogs and they can look imposing, especially when they bark at things.

So anyway, Behr isn't ready to take his CGC. He will be someday, though, and in the meantime, I'm sending a virtual Pet Owner of the Year award for spending thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours training your dogs to be well behaved citizens, even though you guys are totally diligent enough that I really don't think you ever have to worry about someone getting bitten. You could just have the attitude "meh, my dogs scare you but they're on leash and not hurting anyone, so I'll let them be free to be who they are." And I really wouldn't condemn you for it. But you have gone above and beyond to try and make your dogs as non-threatening as possible even though they likely will never hurt anyone in their lifetimes even with no training! So you guys are awesome. And Behr will get there eventually.



  1. Aww, you RPed it here!

    Every word of it is true. You guys are doing everything right- don't despair!

    PS- I think I should be elevated to just plain RL friend because you've been to my unsightly, smelly house so much.

  2. I agree with your friend. Behr is still young and will get there one day. I enjoy seeing "my dog nephew" as much as I can. I will still love him no matter what.