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When we took Lottie from the Dog Rescue Centre, she was terrified of everyone and everything. For the first week, we hardly saw her as she hid in the hedges around the garden. Slowly, we gained her trust and, as her confidence grew, her personality began to emerge. Lottie had been living on the streets of Romania. It soon became apparent that she was very streetwise. I could swear she was also very cynical (if dog’s are capable of that). Although she was very obedient at close quarters, she did exactly as she pleased if more than 4 feet away and her recall was very poor. As she had spent years avoiding eye contact, it was almost impossible to get her attention and hold it. We had heard of Essex Dog Academy and enrolled Lottie on a course, one hour a week for six weeks. Under Sue’s guidance, Lottie learned how to walk to heel, sit on command, stay, wait, lie down etc. But, off lead she was still very unpredictable and would happily ignore us until she was ready to return. We tried everything we could think of. After a week’s holiday where Lottie had happily chased rabbits, squirrels, bikes and on one particularly bad occasion, cows – we decided that we could no longer risk letting her off the lead. This was a massive blow to us as watching your dog explore and run unhindered is one of life’s great pleasures. We learned that Sue was running a 2 day recall course and enrolled Lottie as a last resort. It was very enlightening. Sue knows exactly what she is doing and is a mine of useful and practical information. She taught us simple and common sense techniques which we had never thought of and put us through several exercises which we continued to work on whenever we took Lottie out. Today, Lottie is a different dog. Our rapport with her is better than we ever hoped for. The best thing of all is watching her come running to us when we call her. Full of life and enthusiasm and wanting to be with us. Of course she isn’t perfect, and can still be tempted by a fleeing rabbit – but the improvement is brilliant. We can’t recommend Sue and Essex Dog Academy highly enough. Sue doesn’t always tell you what you want to hear, but she tells you what you need to know. We used to think that loving Lottie would be enough. Believe me it isn’t. Dogs need to understand their place in the pack – and it is always below you. So thank you so much Sue, you really have made such a difference and increased our fun and enjoyment with our lovely Lottie.
Tash brought Bruno, a Cockerpoo, to puppy school at the age of 18 weeks, following a Puppy Induction Home Visit where she was taught how to handle Bruno safely and teach him manners, that are so essential especially when there are children in the home. He had been re-homed on no less than four occasions, so was a handful with no manners. However, he has made remarkable progress in a very short time, thanks to Tash, husband Nathan and their two children putting in a lot of time and effort to reform Bruno into a well-behaved, responsive member of the family. Here’s what Tash has to say: The boys have enjoyed coming and have learnt a lot, especially Elliott our eldest, who does training with Bruno every morning before he goes to school. We will come to the evening class next week and then will look at the Thursday daytime class. Thank you so much for your help, support and advice, as a family we truly appreciate it and have recommended you to lots of people.
We are very glad that we have come along (to your classes) and feel that, under your expert eye, Oscar has made brilliant progress. Everyone is lovely and we think you're super! Thank you and see you tomorrow!
Having some success already with the pulling – outward bound I stopped & turned round when she pulled, but on the way back all I had to do was stand still and she stopped pulling. Noticeable improvement already.* Going to concentrate on the Stay command in the garden this week – she’s ok with the Sit hand command now, but when I tell her to stay she either jumps up at me or rolls over on her belly. Will persevere.......