Rehabilitating an older dog with aggression problems

We are always excited when we hear from former dog training and board and train students. I want to share a note that was sent from one of our Chicago, Il clients.

This was a very serious case of dog aggression. Tyler had a long history of being extremely territorial, would not let people in the house and guarded space in the home even with his owners. He had a bite history which included his owner needing stitches (thus prompting the call for help)
On top of it all, he was 11 years old at the time we started his training.

Tyler is one of those cases that a dog trainer never forgets. The odds were definitely stacked against him. When we agreed to take on his case it was with the understanding that there were no guarantees for rehabilitation. My first day with him was one to remember! It took me a bit to get him out of his crate safely. He was 25 pounds of charging teeth.

His time in our board and train program was an interesting mix of electronic collar training for obedience work to redirect his misplaced intentions. Lots of handling and desensitization exercises, plus building new and positive associations with strangers.

We were holding our breath and crossing our fingers that all would go well when he went home.

So as proud as we are of the work we did here…..the real credit goes to Tyler’s mom and family for their follow through with the new rules and structure set up for him. Without that dedication and consistency things would not have turned out as well.

Kudos to all!

An old dog can indeed learn new tricks. If you are having problems with your dog, please contact us before you make any permanent decisions. Tyler has proven it is never too late to turn over a new leaf.

Here is the letter from Tyler’s mom:

Hi Robin,

I hope all is well with you and you are keeping busy with training. I wanted to drop you a quick note and let you know that we celebrated Tyler’s 13th birthday this past Sunday, he continues to do really well. As you can see from the attached picture he is well integrated back with the entire family. There is no worry about him being around the kids at all, he adores them.

We have brought another new puppy into the house – this time a male dog. Tyler isn’t thrilled but what 13 year old dog would be? He does well with the puppy – with an occasional reminder to the puppy that he is the alpha male dog. It is truly amazing to see the difference the training had made for Tyler and his overall disposition. He will now let strangers pet him and doesn’t even bark when we have new people enter the house. In fact, I took all 3 dogs and both kids to get their pictures done at a doggie photo studio yesterday and even though he was a little stressed he let the photographer pet him and sat beautifully off leash for his pictures.

I cannot thank you and your trainers enough for working with Tyler and giving him a second change – which he has proved over the last 2 years that he deserves.

Thank you and Happy Holidays!!