Ten days ago I got dog number eight in my life. Number seven died six months ago and, like all those before him, broke my fucking heart.
Number eight is the first adult I’ve adopted (she’s approximately one year), and she’s only the second female. This one is a shelter rescue from the south, so very little is known about her previous life.
I’m in the very beginning stages of introducing and acclimating her to her new home and people, and while walking her today I had a bit of an epiphany.
There is no such thing as “dog” training, rather, it’s all training. Every moment you are with the animal you are training it to be the dog you want.
See, with each dog, if you’re paying attention and trying, you learn more about their needs and what makes them tick. You begin to understand what makes them happy and balanced. Of course, unsurprisingly, you often learn by making mistakes – but fortunately dogs can be very forgiving.
This one seems exceptionally bright and she watches my every move, you can almost see her trying to figure out what I want her to do. I’ve learned that training a dog is not so much about setting aside time for learning commands, it’s about leadership skills and consistency.
In other words, it’s about how you live your life and who you are all of the time.
Isn’t this how life works with other people as well?