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  #61  
Old 17.10.2019, 19:53
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Not an easy situation. But there are 100s of 1000s of pets kept in conditions which are totally unsuitable for them, and it is really not helping. Why oh why?
And shelters are full of them - good on you for trying to find a way....
My dogs are not in totally unsuitable conditions, nor at risk of going to a shelter. Dog reactivity is a common problem, and can occur in any breed of dog. Both dogs are low to moderate energy. And of course I will find a way. Pets are a lifetime commitment.

RSC

ETA, I am going to ask that the insinuations about my living conditions stop. They are beyond adequate according to vet authorities, my breeder, and my trainer. Please don't derail my thread with comments about my living conditions. Or insinuating that my dogs have been abused. Thank you
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Old 17.10.2019, 20:02
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

What do you mean by a much stronger hand? What do you do differently with the Malinois?

Yes, I am considering it. I think I also need group classes, to be able to practice the behavior over and over again as solo training isn't really doing nothing to proof the commands she already knows.

She is a soft dog, but stubborn at the same time..

Thanks for your well wishes and advice.

RSC

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It is actually just a training issue. Dogs are different. So they also need different trainings. Stronger dogs need also sometimes correction. I have Malinois and White Shepherds. White Shepherds are quite easy to be corrected and they listen very well. On the other hand, with Malinois I have to have much stronger hand. But I have already 20 years experience and was also competing with my dogs. Not probably so easy for normal people with not such a background.

My advice to you is to change your trainer. Find a trainer who knows how to rehabilitate dogs. Some deal also with very difficult cases. Yours seems something in between.

I always send all my puppy owners to their suitable trainers and when the match is good never any problems. When not....

I wish you patience and try to find suitable training methods for this dog.
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Old 17.10.2019, 20:14
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

I also want to say a big thank you to how many people have reached out to me in PMs to offer advice and support. And thank you to those, in general who responded here in a helpful and respectful manner. A bit of kindness goes a long way and I am grateful for that.

RSC
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Old 17.10.2019, 20:20
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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I got it from Fressnapf and the brand is More4. I just checked on their online page and it isn't there so cannot share a link. I will try and get a photo of him in it and post it tomorrow. It comes with a special lead so you can connect one end to the D ring on the chest and the other end to the normal connector on the back and its like walking him with a set of reins. Its got quite a bit of padding on the chest which is nice
Thank you!
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Old 17.10.2019, 20:31
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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What do you mean by a much stronger hand? What do you do differently with the Malinois?

Yes, I am considering it. I think I also need group classes, to be able to practice the behavior over and over again as solo training isn't really doing nothing to proof the commands she already knows.

She is a soft dog, but stubborn at the same time..

Thanks for your well wishes and advice.

RSC
Some dogs DO need corrections and Cesar Milan is not a dog trainer.

If you were my puppy owner I would advice first to find correct trainer, second try to get dog listen in individual classes also without treats and with distractions and only after then into group.

If you need to practice one behaviour over and over again, it means you are doing something not correctly. But a good trainer will help you out. Forums don't help.

I think your dog is a very nice dog just find the correct way
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Old 17.10.2019, 20:36
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

I tend to fall out with the sort of people who think that Milan fellow is the bee's knees. Quite a few of his methods are against Swiss law, soooo...
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Old 17.10.2019, 20:45
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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ETA, I am going to ask that the insinuations about my living conditions stop. They are beyond adequate according to vet authorities, my breeder, and my trainer. Please don't derail my thread with comments about my living conditions. Or insinuating that my dogs have been abused. Thank you
I know it's hard for you to accept, but the best thing you can do is simply ignore any such responses. It's a public forum (no, you don't have any rights or ownership of the thread) so you can't dictate what sort of replies you get.

You have received many helpful comments as well, so just focus on those, ignore the haters. Haters gonna hate.
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Old 17.10.2019, 20:59
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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I know it's hard for you to accept, but the best thing you can do is simply ignore any such responses. It's a public forum (no, you don't have any rights or ownership of the thread) so you can't dictate what sort of replies you get.

You have received many helpful comments as well, so just focus on those, ignore the haters. Haters gonna hate.
I asked voluntarily and respectfully, lol I know I am not the lord of EF. In any case you are right. Haters gonna hate.. I'll stop replying to unhelpful statements.

RSC
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Old 17.10.2019, 22:32
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

RSC, are you really convinced that the issue is your Great Dane pup?
She sounds more like the drop that made the glass overflow.

New country, newlywed, new language, very very different culture, loads of rules and regulations, a lack of communication, a reserved community that expected you to get it from the word «go», your resistance, sometimes your panic when facing what must have felt overwhelming etc etc.

A holiday, perhaps a romantic get away with adequate puppy-sitting for a few days? A good dose of happiness and some fun perhaps?

Let the world take care of itself....
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Old 17.10.2019, 22:52
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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White Shepherds are quite easy to be corrected and they listen very well.
Ha, tell mine that!! He takes great pleasure in listening then doing what ever the hell he wants!!
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Old 17.10.2019, 22:56
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Some dogs DO need corrections and Cesar Milan is not a dog trainer.

If you were my puppy owner I would advice first to find correct trainer, second try to get dog listen in individual classes also without treats and with distractions and only after then into group.

If you need to practice one behaviour over and over again, it means you are doing something not correctly. But a good trainer will help you out. Forums don't help.

I think your dog is a very nice dog just find the correct way
Thank you. What corrections can be offered to a dog that are humane? I am not team Cesar at all. Is it a correction, for example if I remove her from the situation?

I need to research training without treats, as I would love that to work out. Currently I have treats on me at all times and I want her to be reliable without them.

First step the behaviorist, then from there I will adjust our training methods. I have given them to the Hundehort for a week, maybe more if there is space, so we have the space needed to design a plan of action.

Thanks again, RSC
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Old 17.10.2019, 23:04
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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RSC, are you really convinced that the issue is your Great Dane pup?
She sounds more like the drop that made the glass overflow.

New country, newlywed, new language, very very different culture, loads of rules and regulations, a lack of communication, a reserved community that expected you to get it from the word «go», your resistance, sometimes your panic when facing what must have felt overwhelming etc etc.

A holiday, perhaps a romantic get away with adequate puppy-sitting for a few days? A good dose of happiness and some fun perhaps?

Let the world take care of itself....
Not to make light of everything, but you're right. It was the straw that broke the camel's back. Like of alll things and at this time, I really didn't need it.. but trouble comes at inconvenient times it seems.

Yes, we put them in the Hundehort for a week. So we will go to Austria and just hash everything out without the dogs being there. We need to reconnect and speak seriously about upcoming decisions. Next month I will take the dane and go somewhere alone, to center myself.. it is high time for some respite.

My neighbor has even told me not to be so hard on myself, and it is their dog that is in the cone, not ours! So you're right, the world will keep turning.. but I don't practice self care of both myself and the relationship I won't be much good for anything else, my dogs included.

RSC
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Old 18.10.2019, 00:29
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Ha, tell mine that!! He takes great pleasure in listening then doing what ever the hell he wants!!
Ha ha haa

Probably I have just more experience
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Old 18.10.2019, 06:25
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

I believe that treats are vital part of training especially when you are trying to stop negative behaviour. Sometimes we are not clear and concise in what we are telling our dog to do and treats are given to not only motivate a dog but to redirect their behaviour into something more positive and to let them know when they have done something right. Anyone who believes in positive training will agree that treats should be used. It doesn't always have to be food, especially if the dog is not highly motivated by food, but with toys and praise.


The word "correction" and "no treats" would be a huge red flag for me in a search for a trainer. Ask the trainer a lot of in depth questions, ask how they would handle a particular situation and if their solution includes any type of force or dominance walk away. Ask how long they have been training dogs, ask for references and to speak to other clients who have dogs of similar sizes. Sometimes a trainer might have one technique for small dogs but a completely different one for large breeds. If you feel in anyway uncomfortable in what a trainer is doing with your dog, end the session immediately and walk away. There are some excellent trainers and some exceedingly bad ones and the trainer does not always know best.



If giving food treats, check carefully the ingredients as some are the equivalent of giving a kid a ton of sugar and colouring. Much like in humans, diet can make a big difference to dogs emotion and behaviour. Mine has a lot of allergies so I boil chicken breast and give tiny bits at a time when out training. He doesn't get them in the house just for sitting/lying down. He earns it



Your dog is still very young and will grow out of some of it. Work out why your dog is so reactive. Is it actually fear and her way of saying back off or does she just want to play. Really study her body language. Dogs don't always wag their tail out of happiness. When mine yawns it is not always tiredness but a stress coping mechanism



It is a matter of timing and trying to spot another dog before your dog does. Best to avoid where possible, but it isn't always possible. It works better for me if I have distracted and made myself as exciting as possible well before he spots the other dog and is already at the end of the lead in full pull mode,



Hope that helps

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Old 18.10.2019, 07:30
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Thank you. What corrections can be offered to a dog that are humane? I am not team Cesar at all. Is it a correction, for example if I remove her from the situation?

I need to research training without treats, as I would love that to work out. Currently I have treats on me at all times and I want her to be reliable without them.

First step the behaviorist, then from there I will adjust our training methods. I have given them to the Hundehort for a week, maybe more if there is space, so we have the space needed to design a plan of action.

Thanks again, RSC
Removing from a situation is some kind of correction, but it just stops the behaviour for a moment as it clears the head. But the problem still remains and comes back again. There are several technics, but these are all based on one - No means No.

You should just find a trainer who trains the way, that suits to you and to your dog and gives expected results. Maybe the ones that comment here know to suggest you someone.

It's not "training without treats" - all trainings are reward based, however, if the dog is so old with such serious problems, something must have gone already wrong. Dog must obey also without treats.

Obedience means that dog want's to please the owner. You need to get into your dogs head.

Forums are not place to get help in these situations. You need to find someone in real life that takes a look at the dog and helps you. But I would choose someone that knows how to handle problematic dogs.

All I can help you, is to make you think and give ideas how to get on the path to find a solution. I also tell to my puppy owners: "if that would be your child behaving like that, what would you do". It is easier for humans to understand the situation when they draw parallels to people. If my child would start acting like this, what would I do. We are all living creatures, we are not so different the basics is the same.

There are also tools that you can use which make your life easier. For example against pulling I like most the Halti head collar.

Just be patient with your dog snd find the most suitable solution for you and your dog
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  #76  
Old 18.10.2019, 09:48
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

Yes, with treats I have had great success with conditioning her not to jump on people. I can tell when she is about to and throw a bunch of kibble or dried meat on the floor and she will forget about jumping. Now, she typically doesn't jump to greet anymore.

My trainer told me the treats are a form of payment for the dog, and a way to imprint a nice association with the redirection given in to the dog. Eventually the dog should choose this behavior as it as a more positive net gain.

Right now I am super comfortable with my trainer. She was referred to me by someone who has a 55kg Rottweiler mixed breed living in my same complex. Her treats are a type of dog food kibble, and after reading the ingredients I will switch her to boiled meat. Beyond this training kibble she is eating raw, it is worth a try eliminating any processed food from her diet.

Both my dogs do well in the Hundehort. My Dane's issue is that she has barrier frustration while on leash. She wants to be able to greet a dog, but is too excited. The screaming, braying, and so on.. if you watch the Victoria Stilwell episode with Dylan the Great Dane.. she is like that, but much worse. She has not pulled me down or dragged me down the road, the scene with the Golden Retriever and the other small dog passing in the field is a lesser version of my struggle.


Before, when she was a puppy, she would sit to greet and do the whole ritual of curving around to butt sniff and letting the other dog do the same. She was shy in puppy class, but she was leashed and so we were able to walk away when she returned to my side. This all stopped around 8 months, but she did not have her first heat until after 12 months.

I have never let her say hello on leash after this because her behavior is unacceptable. Frustration can turn into aggression very easily because it is a heightened emotional state. Not only that, but she can't possibly be able to read another dog's calming body signals because she is too busy flipping out with excitement and annoyance at not being able to get to the other dogg. Maybe the other dog will also flip out and be afraid because she isn't sending calming signals when she is frustrated.

With enough distance her reactivity is manageable, but we have to go out into the world. For example to the vet, I always have to call ahead of time and go case the area before I bring her in, sometimes going through the basement or back entry way if there is another dog present or a cat in a carrying case.

I have also been playing games with her, for at least 8 or so months that help her with impulse control.. things like watch me and leave it and so on.. I have seen some marginal progress doing what my trainer has instructed.

On occasion she is fear reactive. She does not like to be startled by anything, be it a plastic bag blowing in the wind, leaves, an animal she didn't see running by. She is HYPER aware of everything, even a breeze.. she will bark if she doesn't like it. She has extremely bad anxiety and reactivity to the point she has broken the window out of our van once because she saw another dog barking at her from the sidewalk. I have kept a journal of her behavior and after reading Meloncollie's post, and rereading my journal entries and posts here I do think she is at the extreme end of normal dog behavior. I will follow through with the suggestion to have a behaviorist assess her and show me all of my options.

For any training or rehabilitation to be successful, my pup needs to be able to focus and I think the anxiety gets in the way. She can't possibly be happy always on high alert like that, and until something more is done I don't think I can expect her to be the best she can be. You can tell she wants to be a good girl, she will often sit for me or lie down if I ask but her body is shaking. I always try to look to see what she is reacting to, but sometimes it is nothing at all.. to my perception and I can't hear what she hears so maybe there is something out there that sounds really scary!

Thank you for the advice.

RSC


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I believe that treats are vital part of training especially when you are trying to stop negative behaviour. Sometimes we are not clear and concise in what we are telling our dog to do and treats are given to not only motivate a dog but to redirect their behaviour into something more positive and to let them know when they have done something right. Anyone who believes in positive training will agree that treats should be used. It doesn't always have to be food, especially if the dog is not highly motivated by food, but with toys and praise.


The word "correction" and "no treats" would be a huge red flag for me in a search for a trainer. Ask the trainer a lot of in depth questions, ask how they would handle a particular situation and if their solution includes any type of force or dominance walk away. Ask how long they have been training dogs, ask for references and to speak to other clients who have dogs of similar sizes. Sometimes a trainer might have one technique for small dogs but a completely different one for large breeds. If you feel in anyway uncomfortable in what a trainer is doing with your dog, end the session immediately and walk away. There are some excellent trainers and some exceedingly bad ones and the trainer does not always know best.



If giving food treats, check carefully the ingredients as some are the equivalent of giving a kid a ton of sugar and colouring. Much like in humans, diet can make a big difference to dogs emotion and behaviour. Mine has a lot of allergies so I boil chicken breast and give tiny bits at a time when out training. He doesn't get them in the house just for sitting/lying down. He earns it



Your dog is still very young and will grow out of some of it. Work out why your dog is so reactive. Is it actually fear and her way of saying back off or does she just want to play. Really study her body language. Dogs don't always wag their tail out of happiness. When mine yawns it is not always tiredness but a stress coping mechanism



It is a matter of timing and trying to spot another dog before your dog does. Best to avoid where possible, but it isn't always possible. It works better for me if I have distracted and made myself as exciting as possible well before he spots the other dog and is already at the end of the lead in full pull mode,



Hope that helps
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Old 18.10.2019, 09:59
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

What you've mentioned about "if this were my child," has stood out to me. If my child was acting out in school, bullying, having anxiety, and frustration issues my first step would be a discussion with them, then a full medical physical, therapy, and if it escalated beyond a certain point and my child was not thriving, I would introduce a combination of medicine and therapy. I would not be so black and white in thinking I failed my child because my methods didn't work, I would humble myself and make us both available to learn from professionals as this is what would be in the best interests of my child..

So it is also true for my Dane. Thank you for giving me this food for thought. She wants to be a good girl, but what triggers her stops her sometimes. If I can raise her threshold and reduce her reactivity via medication or other homeopathic measures, I could have an easier time to reach her and the lessons she learns can more easily imprint.

I don't want to dominate my dog at all--while not being equal I do consider us partners. I want her to make the good choices. As her owner I am here to guide her.. the small successes we have had, where she has chosen to look away from something enticing without prompting from me have been very rewarding to watch. My goal is to give her the tools she needs to self soothe, to choose calm signaling behavior versus flying off the handle all the time. Or even if she is over threshold, I would love for us both if the intensity could somehow diminish.

RSC

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Removing from a situation is some kind of correction, but it just stops the behaviour for a moment as it clears the head. But the problem still remains and comes back again. There are several technics, but these are all based on one - No means No.

You should just find a trainer who trains the way, that suits to you and to your dog and gives expected results. Maybe the ones that comment here know to suggest you someone.

It's not "training without treats" - all trainings are reward based, however, if the dog is so old with such serious problems, something must have gone already wrong. Dog must obey also without treats.

Obedience means that dog want's to please the owner. You need to get into your dogs head.

Forums are not place to get help in these situations. You need to find someone in real life that takes a look at the dog and helps you. But I would choose someone that knows how to handle problematic dogs.

All I can help you, is to make you think and give ideas how to get on the path to find a solution. I also tell to my puppy owners: "if that would be your child behaving like that, what would you do". It is easier for humans to understand the situation when they draw parallels to people. If my child would start acting like this, what would I do. We are all living creatures, we are not so different the basics is the same.

There are also tools that you can use which make your life easier. For example against pulling I like most the Halti head collar.

Just be patient with your dog snd find the most suitable solution for you and your dog
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Old 18.10.2019, 11:32
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

Hi RSC,

Like I wrote in my PM, I love Danes and it's always been my dream to have a Dane & and a Chihuahua together. This is an old pic of my beloved previous 2.4kg Chihuahua with a friend's Dane (I don't know how many kg!). People on the street laughed seeing them walk together!

Thought I'd post something "light" and cheer you up a bit. Truly hope for you your Dane will get to this point too, someday. Stay positive!
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Old 18.10.2019, 11:44
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

I wouldn't throw treats on the ground as the distraction because you want them focused and looking at you. Does your trainer believe in clicker training as if done properly that is a good method of communicating with your dog and reinforcing "marking" good behaviour and for turning their attention to you.

Treats need not always be food but something that the dog enjoys, which could be a toy, playing, being allowed off the lead, praise etc.

"No means no", doesn't teach your dog anything and I try not to use the word "No" in training. It could be used in a hundred different situations and communicates absolutely nothing. Don't just tell the dog not to do something, tell them what behaviour they should do instead. For example, they jump up and you tell them to sit. If your dog tries to pick something up from the ground you tell them leave. You are guiding them towards the behaviour you want from them.

It is a lot easier to teach a dog a trick than it is to get them to change negative behaviour. It needs a lot of time and patience and it is not something that will come instantly. Training sessions in short bursts only and after training they should be able to relax and sleep as it is taxing on their brains. Aside from training sessions there are many little things you can do during the day to reinforce.


You said you are happy with your trainer. How long has he/she been working with your dog. Without knowing your trainer and your methods my initial thought is that they cannot be fully giving you the help and support you need. I know a marvellous trainer in Luzern who fully believes and only uses the Victoria Stilwell type of positive training methods. She also speaks very good English.
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Old 18.10.2019, 11:45
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Hi RSC,

Like I wrote in my PM, I love Danes and it's always been my dream to have a Dane & and a Chihuahua together. This is an old pic of my beloved previous 2.4kg Chihuahua with a friend's Dane (I don't know how many kg!). People on the street laughed seeing them walk together!

Thought I'd post something "light" and cheer you up a bit. Truly hope for you your Dane will get to this point too, someday. Stay positive!
Thanks so much for the photo! Made me smile. Both pups are very photogenic. I have a soft spot for long-haired Chi's

I have my fingers cross that with the appropriate help and action plan my girl will calm down. She is a good girl, despite her issues. I've never bonded as closely to any other dog and as stressful as things are now I am optimistic that we will find a working solution.

RSC
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