Hero was a six month old pup when he came to me; I was excited and nervous, as I had never before rescued a dog whose story was so hard, and he was already half my weight in size. Now I know we were both feeling anxious and insecure.
Kasey Herrera and Gabrielle Johnson each worked with me individually, showing me how to establish calm, build respect, and work through some of Hero’s fears. We signed up for classes and workshops soon after and have been training ever since.
I can’t find adequate words to describe the experience we’ve had. Yes, we’ve acquired valuable skills – from loose leash walking to recall and etiquette for meet and greets, focused attention in distracting environments, and respect for space. But, more importantly, Hero and I are developing a relationship based upon a bond of trust. I am learning, quite literally, to speak dog; and he is learning that he can rely on me to be his safe place.
We’ve had our moments. I have felt frustrated and discouraged. But Kasey and Gabrielle have held me up. They’ve believed in me, supported me, and given me the guidance I’ve needed to keep at it. Now, people regularly praise Hero’s calm, polite nature and his good manners in public. They are amazed that he is so well-behaved at just a year old. I tell them about 2SpeakDog. I will never be able to sing their praises enough.
- Meg H.