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Gunther | German Shepherd | Anaheim, CA | In - Training

Meet Gunther! An energetic 6 month old pup from Anaheim, CA who has joined us for our Three Week Board and Train Program. Gunther is a candidate to be a service dog in the near future, so we will be working on his foundational obedience training over these next three weeks! He is familiar with commands like Heel, Sit and Place, however his training tends to go out the window as soon as he comes across a reactive pup. Gunther will bark and pull to interact with a new pup he hasn't met before. He also loves to counter surf and jumps when greeting someone new. We will be exposing Gunther to new environments to teach him proper socialization with the ultimate goal of being Off Leash! Stay tuned for his three week transformation!

 

Pupdate 11/27/2022

Gunther and I went on a stroll around the neighborhood to expose him to his new temporary home. After he sniffed around and explored we worked on some crate training which he did well with. I used high value rewards to mark it with a Yes as he slowly followed leash pressure towards the crate. We will be hanging out together for the rest of the day and get him familiar with me before we work on introducing him to new commands tomorrow! 

 

Pupdate 11/28/2022

Gunther and I took a trip to the park where we worked on introducing him to the e collar and prong collar. These collars and communication tools that we use to reinforce commands. I guided Gunther with directional changes of the leash, cuing Heel as I made frequent turns. He was very engaged during the Heel, staying by my left hand side and checking in frequently. I also guided him to Come around me and Sit on my left hand side utilizing leash pressure and visual cues. He did not resist the pressure at all and followed it with ease. We passed by a few reactive dogs today while walking around the neighborhood in the evening. I provided a lot of communication and redirecting with frequent 180 turns which helped keep Gunther more engaged with me and less with his environment. He did not react, good work Gunther! 

 

Pupdate 11/29/2022

Gunther and I went on a trip to The Outlets today where we exposed him to a new environment and worked on our Heel command. At times he pulled, especially upon arriving. I gave him time to sniff and explore a little to go potty before we Heeled around the outlets. Whenever Gunther tried to take the lead, I popped the leash utilizing a Herm Sprenger prong collar and paired each leash pop with stimulation of the e collar. Making frequent turns helped him stay engaged as I marked and rewarded his eye contact. Gunther gradually became more attentive and did well with jumping onto Place with a little guidance from me and the leash. Place is great to use to help create a calm state of mind for Gunther and build confidence. It can be used inside the house or outside the house on any surface. Gunther jumped onto the benches and offered a Down when I guided him with the visual cue of my palms facing the floor. Good work Gunther !

 

Pupdate 11/30/2022

Gunther and I went on a trip to The Block where we worked on his Come to Sit, Heel, and Place command near other pups, crowds of people, and new smells for him to take in. After we Heeled around the outlets, he showed improvements in his Come to Sit not needing as much guidance from me as before. We then Heeled past other dogs which can be a challenge for him. He wants to engage with these dogs and tried to fixate. I cue Off and if he does not respond, I stimulate him with the e collar. The second he offers me his attention for atleast 3 seconds, I mark it with a Yes and reward him. This teaches him to remain engaged with me not his surroundings. We have some work to do on engagement but he is off to a good start, especially near his triggers which is what we will keep exposing him to.

I then introduced him to Place which helps create a calm state of mind for Gunther. He can be a bit anxious when in a new environment.  He pants excessively and has a hard time staying still. As he was in Place he held it for a minute and a half which was great! 

 

Pupdate 12/1/2022


Gunther and I ventured out the park where we worked on exposing him to a new environment. He was fluent with his Come to Sit, Heel, and Extended Place with Down for up to two minutes already which is our goal! He did struggle with remaining engaged while a dog passed by. His hackles raised and he began to fixate on him. I turned and cued Off to help him follow my lead again. It took him some laps to begin to check in with me again. This was the first time I see a dog her his attention that much, so we will be focusing our work near other dogs to help him work through this each time.


 

Pupdate 12/2/2022

Gunther and I emphasized our work on his reactivity towards other dogs and working him through his separation anxiety. As I was working another dog Odin, away from Gunther I noticed him whining and crying as I walked away from him. Fortunately I had another trainer with me that was able to work him through his anxiety while I gradually increased distance between us. At first Gunther was struggling, pulling and crying while I walked away. I then gave the other trainer treats to build value with Gunther away from me. The trainer was able to keep Gunther more engaged with him after a while. He was then able to perform a Down while I passed by him slowly at first then increased speed to see if it would trigger his reactivity. After repeatedly doing this, he became more desensitized to me being apart from him. We then had a pack walk where he had to ignore the other dog next to him. This was difficult for him but he began to check in with me which is what I am looking for. We will keep focusing on practicing our work near other pups! 

 

Pupdate 12/3/2022


Gunther and I began to work on all of his commands with the leash dragging, utilizing minimal leash pressure. In the beginning of our session I helped him out when needed with leash pressure. After he demonstrated consistency, I dropped the leash letting him figure everything out with guidance of visual and verbal cues. I then introduced him to my other pup Gucci. Gunther is very energetic, and does not know how to read social cues from other dogs. I helped him learn when to give Gucci space by cuing off when he was invading his space, putting his paw on Gucci’s back which most dogs do not like and will correct. He began to respond to Off frequently, as I paired it with Sit. We will keep working on his impulse control and proper socialization. 

 

Pupdate 12/4/2022

Gunther and I spent the day working on proper socialization, Manners, and Off Leash work. He is improving with his recall without needing much guidance from me. We practiced his Come to Sit as he was initiating play with Gucci. Gunther did much better while socializing with Gucci as well, not being as invasive of his space, and reading social cues. Towards the end of the video, you can see Gucci warming up to hun and reciprocating the energy. Great job Gunther! 

 

Pupdate 12/5/2022

Gunther and I spent the day Heeling together around the neighborhood with the leash dragging , as we passed by plenty of reactive dogs. Since Gunther is reactive towards other pups, I don’t let him look at dogs that are reactive. I cue Off whenever he looks in their direction, and call his name to look at me. If he looks back at the dog  I stimulate him and cue Off again. After a few repetitions, he became more engaged with me. We worked on cleaning up his Come to Sit by utilizing a wall to help him face forward and close the gap between us. He picked up on this quickly, now we will see how he generalizes without using the wall next. 

 

Pupdate 12/6/2022

Gunther and I spent the day working on all of his commands utilizing a 15ft leash to create distance between us for all of his commands. He did great with added distance between us and stayed by my side during the Heel. We passed by a few reactive dogs. Gunther was curious but remained in the Heel position as I made 180 turns with him to keep him engaged with me instead of his surroundings. Whenever Gunther checks in, I reward him for offering me his attention, especially around big distractions! 

 

Pupdate 12/7/2022


Today Gunther and I worked on all of his commands with added distance and duration. I also introduced him to a new command, Under. Under is great to use while out in public with Gunther. He is expected to hold a Down underneath a surface for a minimum of 45 seconds or until he is released with the cue Break. He did great with following the leash underneath the bench, and only needed help the first time to perform. After the first try he was a natural and didn’t need much guidance from me. We then worked on his Come to Heel. He did need a little leash pressure to help stay closer to my side, as he often stayed behind me. After some guidance from the leash, he kept up with Heeling by my left side. 

 

Pupdate 12/8/2022

Gunther and I worked on proofing all of his commands with more distance and duration while at the Outlets. There were plenty of distractions present, especially other pups which is definitely what captures Gunther’s attention most! Constant exposure near other dog’s will help desensitize Gunther and help him control his impulses as well. We emphasized our work on Under and Come to Sit utilizing a 15 ft leash which he did well with! 

 

Pupdate 12/9/2022


Gunther and I worked on proper socialization today as he interacted with the rest of the pack. He needs a lot of direction and cues to redirect him while interacting with other dogs, as he often tries to invade their space. He is learning how to read social cues and no longer puts his paws on other dog’s backs which is something that can easily cause fights. We worked on his recall away from playtime which he did well with. I played the name game with him as well, marking and rewarding whenever he checked in with me. He is more attentive now, even while other pups are around! 

 

Pupdate 12/10/2022

Gunther and I started our day with working on his Food Manners. He is expected to hold his Sit or Down while being fed. After the food bowl is placed on the floor, that is not his cue to get up. His cue to eat is when I release him with the Cue Break. Although tempted, Gunther was able to hold his sit while I eventually went out of sight. This is great practice for impulse control! 

 

Pupdate 12/11/2022


Gunther and I had a fun day of training as we Heeled to the local park together. We worked on his Come to Heel and pace variations with the leash dragging. He is expected to check in frequently, turn when I turn, and sit when I stop walking. Gunther is much more engaged now while walking, and is improving with staying close to my side. I utilized a wall when walking to help keep him close to me with the leash dragging. He no longer passes by my side when he Comes to Heel and can hold his commands for 2 minutes and 15 seconds. Good work Gunther!

 

Pupdate 12/12/2022


Gunther and I took a trip to The South Coast Plaza where we Heleed together, exploring the large mall. We had the chance to climb flights of stairs, go up and down elevators, and walk through confined spaces which Gunther was not a fan of. At first he was very nervous, bringing his head down with a tucked in tail. After taking a few laps he acclimated to his new environment and was more fluent with his Heel. 

Gunther suffers from severe separation anxiety whenever he needs to walk away from me or vice versa. We worked through this today by having him work with another trainer. As you can see he did not want to leave my side initially but we gradually were able to increase distance between us. When he was released from a stationary position, he immediately came to me instead of his handler. We will emphasize our work on his fluency with commands while away from me. 

 

Pupdate 12/13/2022


Gunther and I took a trip to the shopping mall where we began to prepare him for his Final video. We worked on everything he has learned so far, especially Greeting Manners! I don’t recommend letting Gunther say hi to everyone that asks as it can often make him overstimulated or weary of new people. Every now and then it is good to get him practice with a familiar face, so he can hold a Sit while being pet. At times he is unsure of people petting him with their hand over his head which is natural. When they do that and he Sits, I keep the interaction very short and reward him after each successful interaction to build a positive association. We emphasized our work near elevators since Gunther is not a fan. He pulls away from them and does not want to enter or take treats when nearby.  We will work on desensitization each day. 


 

Pupdate 12/14/2022


Gunther has learned boundaries, not jumping on the door to open it anymore. He has learned that when he sits and wait patiently, the door will open. If he gets up, the door closes on him. The door is an important threshold to remain consistent with so Gunther won’t have a habit of being the first one out. 

After Heeling together around the neighborhood and working on his Manners, we played tug of war and fetch together in the backyard. Playtime is a great outlet for Gunther to release energy and is recommended. 

 

Pupdate 12/15/2022

Gunther and I ventured out to Hollywood today where we had the opportunity to proof his commands with plenty of distractions present such as loud bus noises, music with strong bass, crowds of people, and reactive dogs lunging towards him. Whenever we initially arrive somewhere new, Gunther becomes very timid and at times wants to stop walking. He is not a fan of tile floor and at first refuses to walk on that specific surface. I work him through this each time and apply leash pressure along with taps of stimulation then quickly release the pressure as soon as he follows the direction of the leash. After about 15 to 20 minutes of warming him up I take the leash off and practice Off Leash Heels, recalls, Send Away to Place and Extended Sits. Gunther needs constant exposure to continue to build confidence in new environments. With leadership and guidance, he begins to display calmer body language. His favorite command is Under, not needing much guidance from me to perform a solid Under until released!

 

Pupdate 12/16/2022


Gunther and I went on a trip to The Del Amo Mall where we filmed for his Final Video. When we first arrived, he did not want to enter as he was fixated on the tile floor. It is imperative to work him through this each and every time he resists. If he resists and we don’t ever work him through this, he will not overcome his fear. I began by Heeling with him utilizing calming circles at a distance first. After a few laps I gradually got closer and closer to the tile. Every time he resisted leash pressure, I kept the pressure there with stimulation of the e collar at a level that he would respond to, not shut down to. Once he took a step in the right direction I released pressure and stimulation, and marked it with a Yes to encourage him to keep walking. After about 5 minutes of working on this, he was able to Heel through the entire mall. 

We then exited the mall and practiced all of his commands outside where we filmed for his Final Video Off Leash. I attached a preview of his Final above!

 

Pupdate 12/17/2022


Gunther and I spent the day working on all of his Manners such as Greeting Manners, Door Manners, and Food Manners. He practiced his manners while greeting my family that visited today. Gunther’s impulse control has improved, yet needs a lot of structure to be consistent. He will test the waters as often as possible to see what he can get away with, which at his age can be common. A great amount of exercise is recommended for Gunther as he is an

Extremely energetic pup that needs a healthy outlet. It is important to remain consistent with his Door Manners so he can continue to automatically Sit when exiting the house. Place will help provide Gunther a calm state of mind as well and can be used when visitors come by to say hi. It is important to communicate to whoever is petting him to only offer him attention if all four paws are on the floor. 

Constant exposure to new environments is recommended for Gunther as well, since he is quite a nervous boy it will help him to continue taking him to public areas, especially different surfaces to walk on. 

He has gained confidence and is no longer reactive towards other dogs. With consistency, structure and leadership Gunther will continue to progress in new environments. We can’t wait to show you what he has learned, thank you for trusting me with your pup! 



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