Hi! I am in training. Please give me space.

I went to visit Marcel’s home for a private lesson to help his new family help him adjust to city living. He is very excited when he sees other dogs on his walks. He’s getting better but it’s going to take time.

As I approached their home and locked up my bike, I saw this illustration taped to their home’s front door.

Please think about it when you are out walking your dog. Dogs that are reactive and are in training are loved terribly by their families and they deserve our consideration. When people let their dogs rush up without permission (usually off-leash) and set off dogs like Marcel, I just don’t think they understand how it makes their owners feel. Keeping your dog on-leash and in-control in public spaces, and asking permission before allowing your dog to say hello – it is a small courtesy that goes a long way.

dog in training
Hi! I am in training. Please give me space.

2 Replies to “Hi! I am in training. Please give me space.”

  1. Hi Andre,

    I am so grateful your training facility exists! I wish I’d know about you when my dogs were pups.
    I think the “I am in training, please give me space”/”yellow ribbon” campaign are wonderful things.
    We’ve got a rottie who is occasionally reactive on leash. We thought that having the yellow ribbon or the vest with this slogan might make things worse for her. eg. It could make people nervous or fearful of her, especially if they have a preconceived notion about rottweilers. What are your thoughts on that? I’m a dog enthusiast, and I’m currently taking an ‘operant conditioning behaviour analysis’ course through Dalhousie University. My instructor is Heather Logan, she is amazing. http://www.cloverfieldbehaviour.com/about.html

  2. I think that has to be amongst the top complaints I hear from clients who are working on issues with their dogs in public. When ever possible set your environment up for success. That might mean choosing to walk or train your dog in places or at times where and when you are least likely to be bothered by random sniper attacks from people who think it’s ok to just barge into your dog’s space without first consulting you. Especially, and at least, until your dog is at a level of training where you can hit the pause button and deal with the situation without the disruption having a significant effect on your training flow and progress.
    I know many clients who have a hard time with being what they perceive is a rude response to a person who just wants to pet their dog. Unfortunately it is that person who is being rude, and some one has to be the dog’s advocate in these situations. It gets easier with practice to tell people to give you and your dog space. The yellow ribbon campaign is great for people who are familiar with it however it does nothing when the person you encounter is not a dog person and not only has no clue about the meaning of the ribbon but has no clue about proper etiquette when approaching a strange dog. Even guide dogs that wear clearly marked signs not to be petted have to deal with this issue. The best thing you can do as a handler is to recognize the signs of a person who is about to approach your dog uninvited and verbally stop them in their tracks at a safe distance.

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