WEIMERANER & RODESIAN RIDGEBACK – AXEL & ODIN
PROBLEM – RECALL, LEAD PULLING & DOG ISSUES
I was delighted to receive a call for help with her two dogs from Wendy Houvenaghel, former World Champion pursuit cyclist and Olympic silver medallist.
Wendy was having trouble with her day to day walks with them, as they pulled terribly on the lead and their recall wasn’t too great, particularly when off-lead together.
The Ridgeback Odin was also developing a little defensive behaviour around approaching strange dogs, which needed nipping in the bud.
As one would expect from a totally focused and dedicated former international athlete, Wendy was totally committed to the work we did together and here are her comments, following our successful training sessions with her lovely dogs:-
“The reason why I decided on having two dogs was initially for companionship and as I lead a very active lifestyle, I wanted an outgoing-type breed who could withstand lots of outward bound activities with walks, runs and lots of exploring of new places.
As they got a little older my young, outgoing, well socialised dogs enjoyed playfully jumping up to greet me or bounding up to other people and their dogs, which occasionally was not welcomed! Since most of my walks / runs are in public places, I decided I’d better instill more discipline.
Lead walking with my headstrong Weimaraner was difficult for me.
He just wants to live life at 100mph (which I enjoy) and lead walking was no fun as he pulled like a train. My Ridgeback walks very well on his lead by himself, but when I tried to walk both together, it was practically impossible.
The Ridgeback tends to be quite shy and had developed a habit of sometimes growling at passing dogs when he was on his lead which I wanted to eliminate straight away. These few issues had to be sorted out so that dog walking could be less tedious, less stressful and much more enjoyable.
I found Peter’s website when I searched online for dog behaviour training or courses to learn about dog behaviour. There were lots of positive testimonials from happy dog owners which were reassuring to read. I gave him a call and we arranged for him to visit my house.
He brought along Rudi his 5 year old very well disciplined Rottweiler to set up a scenario to assess the behaviour of my two dogs when they met Rudi. Thankfully this went well and we had an effective lesson to address the Ridgie’s growling tendency which worked straight away and he hasn’t growled at another dog since!
After spending around three hours, Peter went home and wrote a report on both dogs. He gave me instruction on how to make quite a few changes to their general routine which would address their current behaviour issues that I’d highlighted.
Peter showed me how to get both dogs walking correctly on the lead together and what a miraculous turn around in a very short space of time. I can now walk both on one hand with no pulling whatsoever! This took a few weeks for the dogs to become used to, but it was well worth spending time training them. Lead walking is very much an enjoyable experience now and the dogs also enjoy it.
The dogs had received only basic training before I contacted Peter. They are becoming more mature now and have become much more obedient especially with Peter’s influence. They don’t jump up any more and they no longer run up to other people or dogs. I’ve also worked on the dogs individually which has helped a lot, they now listen to me more and recall is much better as well.
People even come up to me to congratulate me on my well behaved dogs and even apologise for their own dogs overly boisterous behaviour. Without Peter’s help this would not have been possible! I’m very grateful to him for all his help and tuition, owning well behaved dogs is rewarding and they are a great pleasure to have around. Thank you Peter!
WENDY HOUVENAGHEL, CORNWALL.