Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Hi, we're back!

It's spring(-ish), and we're coming out of hibernation! We actually did do some cool things over the winter (pun not intended), so we'll spend this week catching up.

Mushroom in her adventuring gear

Mushroom and I met up with fellow reactive dog Lilee and her owner Viv. We went for a walk around the park, where we passed several other dogs with varying degrees of success. At the lower end of the spectrum, we did meet one large off-leash dog, which we all but ran away from. Luckily, it didn't come too close, and the incident was probably scarier for the humans than for the dogs. Still, it would be nice if people respected leash laws more or at least had the foresight to leash their dogs when approaching another dog.

Mushroom's worst moment came when a woman walked by with a little dog on a flexi-lead. She barked, jumped, did the whole reactive dog dance. In retrospect, Viv and I could have picked a better stakeout location because I'm not sure Mushroom and Lilee, from their low vantage point, could see the other dog approaching until it was about 15 feet away.

Other than those two experiences, we had a good walk. The dogs they did not react to included: a big black Lab that passed by twice (Mushroom responded to clicks and treats the 2nd time around), a yellow or white dog that we followed around the park (they probably thought we were weirdos), a beagle that stared at our dogs from across a narrow street, and a German Shepherd that didn't even bother to look at us. Mushroom and Lilee also sat calmly while a man walked by with a roller suitcase that looked vaguely dog-like from a distance.

After the walk, we went back to Viv's house to relax. I kept Mushroom on-leash because Lilee didn't like her getting too close (she would scurry away). Lilee wasn't as interested in treats as she was in not letting Mushroom sniff her, so it was difficult to get them both in the same frame. Mushroom, on the other hand, was pretty good about giving Lilee her space, so long as we kept the treats coming. In the future, we plan on taking Mushroom and Lilee for more walks together and possibly using clicker training to convince Lilee that being near Mushroom is a good thing.

Mushroom: What other dog? I just want my treat!
Lilee: Let's just be long-distance friends

Want more pictures and stories about Lilee? Check out Viv's new blog: Life with Viv and Lilee!

1 comment:

  1. What a pretty girl Lilee is!
    I am totally with you on the leash issue! Grrr...