So we tried out Wolfe's Pond Park yesterday. I was impressed! It's a really diverse place. One end of the park is woods, another is a beach, another is open fields and the far side borders on a lake (pond?). Marge had a great time.
Sunday, March 8, 2009
Here's Marge with one of the many friends she's made lately. She's never seen a dog like this before, and quite frankly found it immensely interesting.
Marge's social skills are really starting to blossom. She met her dog park friend, Rowan, on the beach, and allowed his (male) owner to pet her. She also met a couple of other people, both men and women, and allowed to be pet. It's really one of the best feelings in the world to see that. Sometimes she even gives a tail wag.
She's also been socializing more with people in the neighborhood, including my neighbors and their children (some of which she doesn't see very often). She briefly got to see her dog-friend Stewie today too.
Marge has been a busy girl - as have I, and I haven't been good about updating this blog. We've been walking in the afternoon to simulate a crowd situation when the high school kids come trickling down the Lane. We went up to the shopping plaza, too, but she's still iffy about it.
'Bedience tonight. I know we're going to be working more on the petting and separation, so I'm hoping tonight really goes well. This week has been great so far. I've slacked a bit on the formal training sessions and I've really tried to create as many social situations as I can.
MargeBlog started in early 2009 as a training journal for my newly adopted, skittish Lab mix, Marge. Marge's world was small back then; her fears really limited the things I could do with her. Aside from trips to the park and attending beginner training classes, Marge was mostly a stay at home gal - not because either of us wanted her to be, just because the demons from her unsuitable upbringing continued to haunt her.
Slowly, the fear diminished, her world grew. Now, Marge is a fun-loving, squirrel-chasing, winning Agility and Rally dog who accompanies me to a wide variety of places. Here, you will frequently find detailed training updates, snippets from Marge's every day life at home, and photo-filled posts detailing our many outdoor adventures.
This is more than just a dog blog - it is an actual look in to what one shelter dog's life ultimately became when she found her first and forever home and began to blossom.
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A rescue from Georgia bounced around from shelter to shelter and state to state with her siblings, Marge did not have the luxury of living in a home - my home - until just past her first birthday. A life behind bars had taken its toll on Marge, whose obvious fear of people, noise, and city life in general left a lot for her to learn about how to get by in New York.
Marge is a different dog now than she was back then. It took years of new, positive life experiences, but her fears, which used to consume everything we did, are now only one theme in a great big book of adventures.
These days, Marge enjoys going to training classes, taking trips to agility trials, having play dates with friends, and eating anything that's even remotely edible - not bad for a dog who spent her puppy days in cages.
My time with Marge has been a learning experience for which I am ever grateful. As my first dog, she has taught me and continues to teach me so much more than I ever imagined about dogs, training, and behavioral/fear issues. She's a fun dog with a sense of humor who loves life and learning.
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