Burrito Wrangling #29

Burrito Wrangling Update # 29: I've started doing target training with Murph, and I can't even tell you how much he loves it! He's both food motivated and praise motivated, so he sits happily while I ask him to touch my hand to receive a treat with his tail wagging the whole time. His medication is now 50/50 Prozac/Paxil and I think it has been a good switch. It will take a few months of taking the new mix to know for sure, but he initiated play with Mila yesterday morning in the yard which is always really exciting and I think he's seemed a bit more upbeat. We've also been working on the "down" command (I could only ever got him to sit before), and he's getting quite good. Once he has mastered it, I'm going to work on a "down-go to your spot" command so that he can start associating a specific mat/rug (or location) with calmness and safety when "intense" things happen, like the door bell. Overall, the Burritos have been doing very well together with a few episodes of Murph giving Mila the stink-eye. One thing I noticed was that Murph is a lot more wary of her at night (all of the "events" occurred in the evenings). The Vet Behaviorist said that she has heard of other reactive dogs having similar issues and she suspects it has to do with natural hormone or neurotransmitter levels that change over the daily cycle. So, the evenings are when I bring out the big guns: a 12" jumbo bully stick for Murph which will occupy up to an hour of his time. They both tend to silently battle for the spot next to me on the couch in the evenings (a high value resource), so I resolved this issue by getting a really comfy dog bed for the floor on my other side. This appears to make whichever dog didn't get to the couch first, happier. #burritowrangling

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