Drastic actions needed to be taken with our dogs and we took them, sort of. First, everyone got collars. Fred and George Puppers were not happy but did ok with them. Puppy was so depressed with his collar that my husband took it off when he got home from work. We let the Puppers get used to the collars a few days before implementing any other changes. Puppy wouldn’t let us put the collar back on.
Then we got some leashes. My son started leash training individually. Fred did great. He went around the block without even a moan on the leash. George fussed at the leash but did get up and down the road a few times with some encouragement. Puppy, well, Puppy went into hysterics. Not only did my son have to put the collar back on, but Puppy was SURE he was being dragged to his death and acted accordingly.
Over the next few days, Fred, the star student and George, the C student, resigned themselves to leash walking. Puppy wouldn’t even try and threw a FIT every time we made the attempt to put the collar back on.
The next step was to hook the leashes up. I had ordered both a double leash for the Puppers and a separate leash for Puppy because I knew he wouldn’t want to share. The Puppers got a bit tangled the first time out, but overall enjoyed the experience. Puppy, collarless and leashless, went on the walk with us as well, as delighted as could be. He led the parade proudly, making sure each bush was safe for us to pass. He stayed with us the entire walk without any behavior incidents even when a motorcycle passed.
We also needed to deal with the Puppers behavior when they were outside. Every time some jerk came and threw rocks at them, there was a scandal. So we thought the best thing for all concerned would be to curtail their outside time. They could not stay on the animal side of the house however because they howled during my online classes.
So my son set up a doggy daycare system. Before he goes to work in the mornings, he takes everyone for a walk. After the walk, the Puppers are turned loose into his aunt’s backyard. There is some shade to relax under, bugs to chase, grass to chew on and cool water. There’s even some company when my husband is working inside the house. Right now he’s working on patching the walls and ceilings. Meanwhile, Puppy hangs out in the front of the house in the cool sand pile.
When my son gets home from work, he goes to “pick up” the Puppers and they go for another walk, get a snack and some fresh water. There are 2-3 more walks before the end of the day when everyone is herded into the animal side for the night.
Behavior issues have lessened, even with Puppy who is a free-range dog still. It seems he feels less threatened by everything with the Puppers leashed. His position as leader of the pack is firmly established by his collarless neck.
However, people who kick at Puppy from their motorcycles or chuck rocks at him continue to totally make him go ballistic, so not everything is fixed just yet.