You Have My Permission
Pam Dennison © June 2015
I give you my permission to protect your dog. I give you my unconditional permission to be “mama bear” and defend your dog against any and all comers, using whatever it takes to get the job done. And in doing so, I give you my whole hearted permission to gain your dog’s trust.
So much of working with an aggressive, reactive or shy dog is behind the scenes – with how strong your relationship is and how much trust you’ve developed.
A student has a rescue dog who was horribly abused. In spite of that abuse, this dog’s own nature turned her into an extremely shy dog, rather than an aggressive one. The owner is very sweet, gentle and kind, and of a generation that proclaimed that women should always be nice to everyone, come heck or high water, no matter what.
The team was making nice progress, but there was still a reticence from the dog to fully join into and enjoy “life.” Then one day, they were out and about and a very rude person let his not-so-nice dog approach her dog. Well! My student turned into Mama Bear with a capital “M,” and protected her dog. She yelled at the man with the rude dog. She didn’t stop to think what he might think of her – she took care of her own dog to make sure she was safe. And she stuck to her guns when he started to yell back.
From that moment on, her dog has become a brand new dog. She actively seeks out more people and isn’t afraid of the “good” dogs she comes across. Her entire face and body posture has changed for the better and she’s on her way to becoming the dog she was meant to be. I truly believe the change came about because she can now trust her owner to take care of and protect her.
Perhaps you don’t know that you can take a more active, pro-active role in working with your dog. Maybe you’re afraid that people will think you’re rude when asking them to keep their distance. You might think because other’s dogs seem to be so friendly, your dog should automatically be that way as well. You might think, “my last dog wasn’t this way.” Possibly, you don’t like conflict or are so overwhelmed or intimidated by social pressure, that you freeze.
But guess what? No matter the reason, you have my permission to be an advocate for your dog. Go ahead, try it! ☺