Meg and Bev

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  • #62491
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Ok, not sure what to write or where to start so sorry if I ramble!
    We have had Meg since she was 4 months old. She came from the RSPCA and her story was a strange one. Basically farm bred and the farmer sold her and her litter sister to a woman who had special needs (not sure what special needs) needless to say she couldnt cope with both bitches so gave Meg to a friend. That friend didnt want her either so gave her back so the lady then contacted the RSPCA. I used to foster for them so I found out about her that way! However, Meg was due to go to a woman who used to train sheepdogs and had recently lost her older collie and she had terminal cancer and wanted a companion. We agreed, that when the inevitable time came, we would take Meg. So we were due to get her in March 2008, going to be fully trained etc as this lady had had collies all her life. To get to know Meg and to give the lady with cancer some respite we had Meg for a couple of weekends in November 2007! (hope you are all keeping up) This went on for a while and when I picked her up one Friday night they asked if we would consider taking her now as the lady wasn’t coping. This was now December 2007 and we took her in. She had had very little training and we started from scratch. She went to obedience classes and came and watched agility, all of which she took in her stride. She was very bolshy and bouncy around other dogs and some she would growl at (normal puppy behaviour we were told!)
    Anyway, I would love to know what happened to her and in a way I feel guilty that it must have been something we did as she changed. One day when I was walking both ollie and Meg we met a friend of mine walking her new puppy. They all played nicely until I put Meg on her lead and then she snapped at it, taking me by surprise I told her “no” and my friend put her dog on lead too.

    My parents got a new rescue dog in February and she is a Flat coat retriever. Meg met her and they had a bitch fight, neither of them did any damage (physically anyhow). This happened everytime they met and it made it really hard to go for dinner or pop over for a cuppa!

    Meg was also bad with dogs out on walks. if I wanted to stop and chat to the owners of other dogs then Meg would fly at the dog. So…..I stopped being able to chat to people we met on walks, would walk the other way when a dog came towards us, would put meg on lead etc etc.

    I am a primary teacher so over the summer I was at my wits end, spending 24/7 with Meg and having to plan when I went for walks and where. Previous years ollie and I would just get up, get the map out and walk! If we met dogs, great! if we didnt, oh well! I resented Meg for preventing me and Ollie from enjoying our walks. I trawled the internet looking for behaviourists in my area and I found Bark Busters!  they quoted an awful lot of money and we decided that as they were a franchise we would try and find a private one. Finally I found a lady who said “yes I can help, we’ll have her sorted” so I travelled to her. Her methods were not what I wanted and I felt awful after the session, but still paid the £150. I was desperate!

    This had absolutely no affect on Meg other than to scare her into not doing the wrong thing so we didn’t do any if the exercises. I emailled to say how unhappy I was and have heard nowt! She left me by saying “she is a tough cookie that just needs dominating”

    On the advice of “friends” we were told that she would grow up and out of her ways and she just needed shouting at! Again, bad advice and all from people who are supposed to know dogs. Meg is a very frustrating dog, but nothing is more frustrating than people saying “you shouldnt do that” and not giving you alternatives, or saying “havent you got her sorted yet? If she were mine, i’d have her sorted” etc etc.

    doG this post is long, well done if you still reading!

    Anyway…after Meg had taken on a dog doing nothing at agility I was once again at my wits end. Literally wanted to tie her to a fence and drive off, anything for my old life back.

    Wags then put me in touch with Bev.

    bev came to assess Meg and showed us what we were doing wrong with management etc! and taught us how to clicker train. I have had a very intensive week (half term) and I’m shattered. Have seen some really good moments in Meg and Bev is fantastic. Very, very wobbly today and can’t see the woods for the trees. Bev can explain more about what we have been doing and no doubt tell me off for wobbling!

    Bev is brill and I really enjoy the sessions (as do Ollie and Meg!) I get very nervous when it is back to me to do everything, especially now as we are doing dog greetings!

    Anyway, sorry for rambling! I will keep you all updated with progress if you want me to!

    Hils

    #77925

    Awww bless you sounds like you been through a lot with her – will be so worth it though promise. Think anyone whos had bevs help will agree that shes wonderful- and everyone wobbles sometimes  :ok:  :-*

    And you better keep us updated  😉

    #77926
    GSPmad
    Member

    You’re doing better than me – I don’t just wobble, I fall off.  ;D

    Stick with it.  :ok: You’ll get her right.  🙂

    #77927
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Hi,

    you’re right – everyone wobbles but Meg and you will get there 🙂

    Now I have something to tell you and I hope you’ll take it the right way and it will give you hope.

    Bev has told me to let you know that my Bonnie was worse than Meg is, she had literally NO social skills with any dog and would just lunge at them barking like crazy right in their face.  Every time I went out the house with her it was a mini “mission” to avoid all dogs and all people because I felt so frightened that she’d actually attack someones dog.  She would snap and bite at any part she could get to – she was rude, bossy, ignorant and a right c*w!!  I couldnt let her off lead or even on a long line for a good while plus she was making my first and absolutely deeply loved dog bl**dy miserable – he got ill as a result was withdrawn and just so unhappy it was just awful.

    Fast forward less than a year and I have an appeal come in for a slight little collie girl, i knew her name – was told she was good with other dogs and needed a place to go.  Her name is Misty and she was 18mths old, about as dog friendly as an alligator and well … in just 8 weeks Bonnie (and Bev) turned her round from a dog who was actually physically fighting (and getting hurt / doing damage) to a girl who would lay down on my bed grooming bonnie while she was grooming her.  I cant put across really in words just how far Bonnie came and how fast she turned Misty round and now she’s helping again with Sammy.

    [img width=384 height=468]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/bonnie/bonniebark.jpg[/img]
    look at this – weight forward, **** off  (and the dog she’s warning off is behind a fence !!!!)

    [img width=468 height=382]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/bonnie/th_MOV01350MPG.jpg[/img]

    this …..
    and this …..

    [img width=468 height=382]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/bonnie/th_MOV01383.jpg[/img]

    were shot on the same day – just look at the difference in William ……. why ?  because i had better management and more confidence in the 2nd one after a 30 sec convo with Bev !!

    She was so resource aggressive I sat in a chair while Bev did “mine yours” with a bone and she was barking and snapping and making a right bleedin scarey racket.  She couldnt walk on a lead, she didnt have any manners, she’d get up / in / over etc … everything you didnt want her to she was totally defiant and ate anything vaguely organic (including cut flower food and lilly flower heads and 1/2 a bag of granary bread making flour)

    #77928
    Anonymous
    Guest

    looking at those video’s can you imagine how far this dog has come to remain calm in this one ….

    [img width=468 height=382]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/th_MOV00342.jpg[/img]

    and then for misty to go from that … to this ……..

    [img width=468 height=382]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/th_MOV00438.jpg[/img]

    in 8 weeks ….

    #77929
    Anonymous
    Guest

    this is bonnie after alot of her re-mod with a resource-aggressive, dog-aggressive dog who was in kennels still on the way back from playing “fetch” together.

    #77930
    Anonymous
    Guest

    here she is again – her and misty infact … in among loads of doggies – playing ball like nice girls

    [img width=468 height=327]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/park1.jpg[/img]

    #77931
    Anonymous
    Guest

    here she is again – helping with a “typical terrier” boy (very gratefully re-homed by rescue remedies)

    [img width=323 height=468]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/Bertie/BonnieandBertie.jpg[/img]

    here she is again sharing nice her ball with my “pup for a night” (on his way to rescue remedies)

    [img width=468 height=428]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/Jack%20Jack/caughtintheact.jpg[/img]

    #77932
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Wow Claire that is soo good to see! I know Bonnie was worse than Meg and I’m probably wanting too much too soon! Just can’t see meg ever being that relaxed around other dogs!

    Both of mine are shattered after Bev’s session today and i’m enjoying the peace and quiet that that brings!

    I love Meg to bits and will never give up on her-would just prefer not to spend the next 15 years or more avoiding situations!

    #77933
    Anonymous
    Guest

    about 2 weeks after i got her

    she was getting good with wills
    [img width=468 height=300]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/swanage/6d5456bd.jpg[/img]

    but still iiirrrkkkkkkkkk with other dogs – look at her body language tense, tail up, weight forward, right in the other dogs face (who is clearly saying calm down, too much)  :-*

    #77934
    Anonymous
    Guest

    sooo …

    Meg sounds to me like a typical border collie girl who hasn’t had proper puppy socialisation, has been with her sibling for far too long (and thus cued off her and not listened to a word humans have said!), and lacks any real adult training / socialisation.  She’s been allowed to get the better of her humans in her previous homes by the sounds of it had started walking all over you aswell.

    Now, when you agreed to take her on – you were expecting a fully trained sheepdog, what you have is a very typical young female border collie rescue i could show you a hundred just like her and much much worse.  So – yes lower your expectations – she’s actually more work than taking on an 8 week puppy would be, take each day as it comes and remember tomorrow is a new day!

    Put your trust in Bev’s methods – these pictures are proof that it works for dogs just like your Meg and worse and when I started with Bonnie I didnt have any real dog skills at all, infact i didnt even have the confidence to talk to my own dog in public !!

    Bev – you have my permission to release any of my notes onto this thread 🙂 

    Claire x

    #77935
    Anonymous
    Guest

    I can second what a cowbag she was  :ok: thats my poor Jazzie who only wanted a new friend and a swim  :scared:
    Keep going I want to read her progress and also to hear you say we met a dog and they played ball in the park off lead
    Val

    [quote author=piglet link=topic=12936.msg248936#msg248936 date=1225657738]
    about 2 weeks after i got her

    she was getting good with wills
    [img width=468 height=300]http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b19/clairewarden/swanage/6d5456bd.jpg[/img]

    but still iiirrrkkkkkkkkk with other dogs – look at her body language tense, tail up, weight forward, right in the other dogs face (who is clearly saying calm down, too much)  :-*

    [/quote]

    #77936
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Thanks for your support everyone, it really helps knowing that you have all been through similar situations. Posting that last night was really hard as it makes me feel like I have failed her. She is a very special dog and Ollie adores her. She is definately pack manager and we are now promoting that which should make her life easier!
    Today was our first day back to reality (I went back to school so early mornings started again) I took Ollie out for his walk and my husband took Meg. i got to the field and played frisbee. bearing in mind all the factors (its dark, first morning in reality without Bev, never walked further than the end of our street in a heal close) I wasn’t expecting ash to get too far before having to abandon the walk and free shape in the house instead! – if she can;t walk nice then she doesnt get the walk!

    However! On my way home I saw Ash and Meg walking towards me with meg in a heal close!!! I wanted to cry, I was so proud of them both! We did the whole “leave it” so not to have an unsolicited greet and when both dogs were listening we let them greet! Ash then took the frisbee from me and continued his walk!

    He said she was a wee shite on the way home but only cos she saw another dog in the distance (who we think she thought was ollie playing in the field), and kept trying to to go back that way!

    Anyway, cos it was my first day back at school I filled Kongs (why has no one told me about these magic things before!!!) and left them at home (normally Meg finds ways of entertaining herself). But when I got home the knogs were empty (and hidden!) and the house was in one piece!!

    We then did some door practice and Meg had a lightbulb moment!!! She realised that if she budged then the door shut so ended up just staring at me rather than the door!!! With Meg obviously ready to learn I did loads of C2 work in the garden and she even left the ball I was kicking when in a heel close!!! (Thought i’d test her boundries!)

    She has just done some freeshaping and chaining with ash and is now sleeping like a baby!

    After yesterday I am so much happier and can see the progress!! We took Meg to a park with Ollie and a friends dog yesterday and she was all over the shop! got a bit of good stuff out of her but I really felt like i’d let her down and not put enough into her training. Realise now that the criteria was probably a bit high and she did as well as I could expect!

    I will keep you all updated and hope you don’t mind my long posts!  It is great just being able to write all this down. I owe a lot to Bev for her time and patience (esp with me) and am looking forward to the road ahead!

    Hils

    #77937
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Always enjoy lightbulb moments  :ok:

    #77938

    really good well done  :yes:

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