SA brag!

Since I have started work at the assistance dog organization full time full time earlier this month the dog's schedules have been flipped upside down.  They are allowed to come to work with me but since 90% of my job is away from my desk and getting each service dog ready for their client, my dogs don't really get to hang out with me unlike other employee dogs who can just chill with mom.  Previously I had baby gated Lance in my cubicle while I worked and came to check on him every 30min or so.  Lance didn't like it but was ok with the situation.  Except for the cats that like to hang out at my desk since I feed them; Lance is scared of cats.  But I knew that I couldn't leave Vito in my cubicle all day, not with his anxiety.  I have even brought him in for really short times over the past couple of months hoping that he would relax and settle in with his bones but he really didn't.  On the positive side Vito didn't do full out hollering, but he would still do light whining and stand at the gate with eyes peeled out for me, bones untouched. 

Anyway, now for the brag!  The last two weeks, when Vito started to come on a more frequent basis, I assembled a crate and stuck it in the training room with me.  Vito is in the crate when I'm training each dog, and gets out of the crate to hang with me for the 5minutes of downtime I have between each dog while I write notes.  In and out, repeated a billion times with the occasional break to hang out at the cubicle with me.  And he is doing AWESOME!!!  No whining, even when I completely leave the room to walk the dogs to and from their suites.  I can even be gone for 30minutes and nothing!!!!  He may not be completely comfortable, but he is lying down in his crate nicely and no screaming :)  Well there is the occasional whine but I think it's more from frustration then anxiety.  I am ecstatic!

We still have some work to do though.  Vito hasn't needed to come to work every day with me but that may change.  And when that day comes, Vito will need to be left in a crate for up to an hour with me gone as I take dogs out in public. 

The Thundering Herd  – ( June 26, 2010 at 11:35 AM )  

Way to go, Vito. We really like our crates.

Cinnamon  – ( June 26, 2010 at 3:53 PM )  

That is a big progress!! Congratulations!! Maybe I should do something like that with Cinnamon using a crate, although I am not working with other dogs except for Mint in my case. But, I think I can still imitate the tactic, putting Cinnamon in and out of her crate and having some time together in between.

Also, thank you for the link to your blog post about attention exercises!!

Cinnamon's mum

Muttsandaklutz  – ( June 26, 2010 at 7:35 PM )  

That's fabulous!! You are doing wonderful work with him. Must be awesome to see such progress.

Lance is afraid of cats? Oh geez, I love the little guy that much more! What a character.

achieve1dream  – ( July 6, 2010 at 7:35 PM )  

That is sooo fantastic! Congrats on your success! Working with a dog who has SA is a game of patience and dedication (probably more than I have lol) and you've done great!

D. Og  – ( July 9, 2010 at 5:20 AM )  

Rotties are intelligent, loyal family members. Despite being aloof with strangers, Rottweilers love their family. This dog is happiest with a job, and if the job involves his loved ones, so much the better! Possibly a holdout from their herding days, if your Rottie is not at your feet, you can be sure he knows exactly where you are at all times.

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