Brody and Baby-L – The bond builds and the reports come in
Jessica’s first reports come in:
JDP October 22, 2018, 9:03 am
Things are going well.
This weekend was sweet – I was on the couch giving Logan a bottle when Brody asked to snuggle. He burrowed right in with us, but I had a pillow in between the two just for an extra buffer. Logan was also sleepy and not grabby at that particular moment. Since they were both calm, it was a nice 10 minutes! Then Brody got hot under the blanket and crawled out for some air 🙂
When our dog is calmly snuggled next to us with our body (and even an extra pillow) between dog and baby, we can insure all stays calm and safe as we continue to build their bond.
Trouble passing other dogs…
Because Brody also had some trouble passing other dogs when out walking, we worked on a desensitization and counterconditioning protocol. Taking baby and dog out for a family stroll is a great way to build a positive association – almost like a date night.
JDP October 24, 2018, 8:01 am
One more thing that happened last night that made me explode with pride!
I was walking with Baby-L in the stroller and Brody beside us. A woman with two big, lunging dogs was approaching us. I crossed to the other side of the street to give everyone more space. As I crossed the street, another big dog was in his front yard – he is on an invisible fence and he started barking and running up and down the front yard. We were in the middle of these two.
I did “LOOK AT THAT!!! LOOK AT THAT!!! Those are silly dogs! Hooray!!!” and marched us all right in between all those crazy dogs, and Brody just trotted alongside the stroller – no reaction at all. I heard the lady with the dogs on leash say “Look, you guys – THAT is a good dog.”
Wait a minute. Someone used MY dog as an example of a GOOD DOG!? Once we got past the madness, I had a little party for Brody right in the street. I was so proud of him!
In January of 2020 I first wrote about Emma’s attacks on dogs of the Upper West Side.
In the time since, Emma has attacked other dogs, chasing one out of the park and across Central Park West. And again, Emma’s owner did nothing to stop her. Many participating in dog play groups have requested Emma not be allowed to assault their dogs. Because Emma’s owner refused to control her dog, a number of owners began to avoid these groups.
Pax’e and I have tried to avoid Emma’s aggression:
By altering our walking schedule
By going to different areas of Central Park and as a result we have missed seeing our friends in our usual locations
If I’ve seen Emma in the park, we have quickly turned and headed in the opposite direction
I choose high or open ground to let Pax’e play so I can see if Emma is coming – but…
Even with all these avoidance strategies in place, last week as Pax’e and I were getting ready for a ball toss west of the tennis courts at Ninety Sixth Street, I heard a growl coming at us from out of nowhere then saw Emma trying to grab Pax’e’s back end.
I had not seen Emma coming before she was biting Pax’e.
Emma was relentless. All I could do was keep twirling between Emma and Pax’e as Emma continued with multiple aggressive charges.
Emma finally backed down from me and my yelling at her with straight-on direct eye contact (not an advisable thing to do with an aggressing dog but there was nothing else).
Emma’s owner did not call Emma off of Pax’e and me. She did not try to intervene. She simply continued along the path without her dog.
Many of you don’t know that I walk with a cane and have had a number of falls this winter. Attacks like this not only put Pax’e at risk, but me as well.
Emma’s attacks put dogs and people at risk of physical harm and a kind of Dog-walking stress disorder where dog-walkers cannot have a peaceful walk in the park because they are in a heightened state of stress and arousal hoping they don’t run into Emma.
New York City dogs and their handlers have rights to be safe. They should be able to walk through parks without the threat of an unleashed aggressive dog attacking them because the dog’s handler does not care. No dog walker should leave their apartment wondering if the off-leash bully of the neighborhood is going to attack them.
More of us need to say something to Emma’s Cruell de Vil-ian mistress or Emma will continue to prevent those of us who have been attacked by Emma from having a simple peaceful walk in the park – or worse.
is a uniquely qualified clinician with expertise in evaluating, managing and modifying a wide range of challenging canine behaviors. They build and strengthen relationships between the human and canine members of a household by minimizing stress in training and creating an atmosphere where all members of the household learn positive training techniques.
Dog Behavior Consultants emphasize preventing behavior problems and when issues already exist, working protocols in the LIMA principal (Least Invasive, Minimally Aversive) to fix and/or manage behavioral obstacles getting in the way of a happy human-dog household.