My Dog Molly: The Paradox

A girl's discovery about her dog and herself.

choices

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Every day we face choices. Tough choices, easy choices, risky choices, good choices, bad choices…so many choices. Knowing you’re making the right choice is the tricky part as often we don’t know if it’s the right one until it’s too late. But you learn each time you make one, be it right or wrong.

I guess I never thought that dogs need to learn to make choices but it makes sense. Sadly, Molly has made a series of bad choices over the last couple of years but she can’t help herself as she hasn’t learned how to make the right ones. But we’re working on that.

Last weekend we met with a new behaviorist and she helped me see what I need to start doing to help M learn to do the right thing. The session started out a little rough. Again, I guess I hoped Molly would miraculously be great and love everyone like she does me but sadly, with any attention given to her, she would get aggressive. If she’s ignored all is okay. So strange. I wish I knew when/why she stopped trusting people but all I can do is help build that trust back up so she can make the right choices.

After about 15 minutes of seeing what triggers M she calmed down and relaxed to the point that she started to explore the training facility. That was when her behaviorist, S., got to see my playful, loving puppy.

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She would really only play with me and essentially ignore anyone else there but that was kind of to be expected. What was nice though was that she was comfortable there and ready to play. I hope that means she’ll learn this is a safe place where she can romp and make friends…one day.

In the meantime we have a lot of work to do. S. is sending me a cheat sheet and videos to work off of to help Molly make better choices. I’m hoping to set up a session with S. about once a month to gauge her progress and see how things are going. What’s going to be difficult for me is engaging others to help me expose her to new people. I need to ensure these people are ones I trust who will remain calm and won’t get scared. Given how much I hate to ask for help from anyone this is going to be a learning opportunity for me too.

It was a long day for both of us. Lots to think about, lots to consider. But it’s a beginning and what’s really important is that I continue to choose to find a way to help M. I love her too much not to.

 

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