Have you ever worked so hard for something then when you finally get it you have to take a moment step back and say "Am I sure this is right?" That's how we felt about the dog. We have fund raised and been waiting to get the dog for right at a year (some families wait 3 years!) so as we pulled into the parking lot the first day of class, I was thinking "Uh, I hope we were right." Right away when Dalton started taking up with her I knew we were.
Then the first day of tracking I was yet again reassured that I was right. This was one of the best ideas I have ever had!
Then today was the first day we have tried tethering and behavior disruption. It is definitely confirmed, I'm a genius!
For the first time we walked through the mall without anyone having a death grip on Dalton or him being on a harness or being in a stroller or buggy! He had his freedom to walk around and look at stuff but not so much freedom that he could take off running. I had a little peace of mind about him not running away!
Then we did a few tracks in the mall which really reaffirmed my genius. I now have a little bit of a security blanket that if he were to get away Arizona could find him in a matter of minutes.
The dog is also trained for behavior disruption. For us that means when Dalton gets overwhelmed and starts jumping and hand flapping the dog has been trained to come over and paw at him to distract him and to draw his attention to her. The dog is also trained to provide some deep pressure by laying over Dalton's lap to help calm him down, we can use the touch command for the dog to paw at Dalton when he jumps and flaps his arms to distract him, or nuzzle him when he bites his shirt or fingers (we are still working on this one). As you can tell Arizona's abilities are priceless! Plus Dalton and I taught her how to fist bump tonight.
The fist bump is his new thing along with high five. Of course Arizona fist bumps the same way she gives high five it's just Dalton doing something different but he doesn't care about the details! :)
However, dog supplies are not! I don't know if you guys have been to a Pet Smart or a like store lately but it's crazy!!
Needless to say now I KNOW without a shadow of a doubt I was right to pursue getting this dog and if I ever had to I would do it all over again I totally would and wait longer if necessary!!
We can't wait to get back so that everyone can meet the newest member of our family!
Below is the link to Chris Tomlin's - Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone). This is a favorite for me. Amazing Grace is a song I have sung almost everyday since my kids were born as a lullaby. God's grace is simply amazing, it's never ending.
Chris Tomlin--Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone)