Service dog handlers, PLEASE don’t do this!
We went into therapy, Chopper did amazing on the way there in the car (which has been hard for him since the car accident) and he did great going in and up the elevator and then there was another service dog there. A program dog on a 6 foot leash completely out of command. Not being asked to stay close. Not being asked to focus on it’s handler. Not being asked to do anything. Just free to walk the length of the leash and it came up to Chopper. I am not excusing Chopper’s behavior of not listening to heel or focus and also walking (or trying to) up to that dog. Chopper only whined, he didn’t bark. But he was fixated on that other dog. That is my fault. I have not been able to physically train around other dogs. I should have done it in the beginning and focused on training around other dogs in the beginning and I take full responsiblity for that. But, that said, why was this program dog fully out of command? Not being asked to heel, or stay close, or focus? And why was he allowed to walk up to Chopper? I understand no corrections and that method of dog training. I do. And I am totally fine with that method of training. The balanced method and using corrections works best for Chopper. I am totally fine with a positive only style of training. But, if you are doing that, use treats or real meat to get your dog to focus on you. Use treats or real meat to ask your dog to heel or stay close to you. Don’t just take your service dog into a non-pet friendly location and allow it to run around freely on a 6 foot leash fully out of command never being asked to focus on you! That’s not ok. So, I am not excusing Chopper’s behavior at all and I did my best to correct it and to refocus him and I was successful after I walked to the other side of the waiting room and we were able to stand beside the other dog and Chopper covered and focused on me. But, I am just frustrated by the utter lack of handling by the other handler. That’s all.
Sorry I didn’t get footage of the encounter. The video was stopped right after Chopper came out of heel as I was soley focused on him at that point. And I don’t want to post that as I don’t feel like being beaten up on by the community. I am just simply asking that if you are a service dog handler, please ask your dog to at least focus on you and please, please, PLEASE don’t allow your dog to come up to another service dog!
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