Day 14: Obedience
As of today, I’ve been with Jasmine for two weeks. She’s still obnoxious, but she’s…different…from when I first brought her home.
First of all, she hasn’t jumped on anyone for the last week, she hasn’t tried to eat my other dogs, and she knows her name, sort of! This is unbelievable progress. She still gnaws on human appendages, but it’s nowhere near as often as her first week home. We’re going to work on that next.
We’re starting to communicate better especially after sitting in on doggie training class this morning, which was absolutely phenomenal. Like, where do I pay for classes? I want the Dog Whisperer to take all my money n-o-o-o-w.
Speaking of the DW, he’s tall and pretty intimidating. I know he’s helpful and kind from our emails, but in person he’s…intense.
Like a whispering drill sergeant, he sang to these dogs. He sang his sweet tune and these dogs just did whatever he asked. He’s like the dog commander. I just sat in awe watching these dogs, Nash and Echo and Dryden, bite the bejesus out of him and some decoy. Like…what!
And here’s Jasmine yawning. Help. Me.
I worked pretty hard to give Jasmine the best first impression…and I don’t think the Dog Whisperer was impressed.
As he towered over me, he said, “Well, she has more drive than most.”
😭 JUST TELL ME SHE’S LAZY! JUST SAY IT!
I think at that moment he was *trying* to be kind, but I couldn’t read his brooding expression. It was just awful, friends. I was convinced he was going to order me to run laps because Jasmine sucked at life.
Today, the DW didn’t charge me a dime to sit in his class. He invited me to bring Jasmine and watch his protection course from 10-12. That caught me off guard because usually people want something. But nope. He expected nothing from me, which was really refreshing and what I had expected after talking to him for a few months.
Him practically shape-shifting into a wolf midday to communicate with these dogs was something I definitely wasn’t expecting, but it was cool. And when it comes down to it, the DW is knowledgeable about both sport and real-world applications. I do not want Jasmine to be one or the other because I strongly believe that both disciplines combined offer unique well-rounded skills.
The class met at a local park, and there were about seven dogs total (including Jasmine). Dog owners had tents set up, chairs, distractions—you name it! With the weather being nice, this location was a nice change from working in a warehouse with dozens of other people.
I watched, because I have actual manners.
She was totally bored during the obedience portion of the class. As all the dogs on the field pranced around like ballers, I’m pretty sure I heard Jazz snoring when she wasn’t trying to eat dirt. This didn’t surprise me at all since her obedience SUCKS.
After the obedience segment, the decoy came out ready to be bitten by these dogs. Jasmine was wide awake for this. I had never heard her bark until today.
I was astonished. I was honest to Gaawd certain she was mute and deaf.
I was pleasantly surprised with her today. Usually she just sunbathes on the balcony and eats tulips like a deer. I had never seen her like this before. She was…protective?
The dogs practiced on this bite sleeve one by one and the DW did a demo (pictured below). And Jasmine just sat next to me barking like a fiend. The Dog Whisperer kept saying things to me, but I was kind of in a state of delusion from being overwhelmed. I’m not sure if I was the one being trained or Jasmine…
After everyone had their shot, the DW asked me to bring Jasmine out on the field. Umm…you want me to WHAT? 😳 I was petrified she would be crazy or run off or something.
The Dog Whisperer basically played tug with her. He gave me some tips and showed me the basics of what I should do at home to build more strength in her tug…apparently, she was kinda lethargic…he he…my bad. Again, his nice way of calling her lazy. How considerate, DW!
After a few minutes, the DW discovered she understands German. I have been using both English and German commands with her lately, and she is familiar with both, but this…this was an entirely different level of focus. She’s rusty, but my girl did it! She freaking did it. I wanted to cry! I was so proud of her. I was particularly impressed that she let go of the tug toy on command. If only she’d let go of my arm…
It was reassuring knowing that the work I have been doing with her these last two weeks has helped. Now, she and I can communicate, and we are officially on the same page thanks to this doggie class.
I’m so grateful for that.