Friday, February 5, 2010

Challenges

This morning, I took my new boy--now Fozzie Bear, which I think conveys a much better message about pit bulls than his shelter name Bullet--for a walk, and we went to the park and did fine until I was leaving the park and walking down some icy stairs. I guess he was frustrated at leaving, or excited to be out, or just wanted to communicate something, because he grabbed his leash in his mouth and started tugging away. Really intense, complete with growling, shaking, etc. I ended up sitting on the ground in the snow, holding on to the leash for dear life, unable to hold his collar because his collar had slipped off his head. When I did get close enough to take the leash, he redirected his excitement (aggression? Reactivity? Hyperactivity?) onto my arm. It was a awhile before I could get the leash away from him and I'm still not sure how I did it.



Then this afternoon, I was in the yard trying to get him some exercise, and he chased sticks nicely but when I turned my back he went after my pants legs, then coat, then mittens. I don't know whether to call it aggression or overexcited playing, but it is hard to stop him once he starts. In all these cases I was eventually able to get the leash or the mitten away from him, then hold his collar and stroke him as I asked for a sit and treated him, and he did calm down.

Eegad. I have my work cut out for me!









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