Real Dogs - Real Solutions

Rocco

Date of Graduation: May 2, 2017

Rocco the German Short Haired Pointer came to Quinebaug Kennels at the young age of 4-5 months old for the two week puppy program. Rocco was a typical shorthair puppy with a wild mentality and unmeasurable amounts of bird drive, however he was also a bit of a space case with a running mind and tap dancing feet.

With bird work and a young puppy the most important objective for his two week stay was not so much training, but teaching to stand still and accept touch along with calmness. At a young age it was easy to work his obedience on lead with a well-developed point of contact for his next step and return for the finishing of the gun dog program.

At first Rocco had some difficulties with his training due to immaturity and being so busy minded but with steps towards quieting him down and keeping him still, Rocco quickly began adapting into a stable pup. Most of the time for pups like this one; bird drive is never a problem. With Rocco’s love of birds, good natural point and willing retrieve we knew it was time to introduce a blank 22. Pistol and shortly after a shotgun. Dogs such as Rocco always give myself and the other trainers a feeling of relief and accomplishment when we can manage to slow them down and put a handle on them while never impacting their prey drive. Rocco was a lot of fun to work with and teach, and of course we look forward to his next stay with us.

Millie

Date of Graduation: May 2, 2017

Millie (brown Labradoodle) came to us for puppy training when she was around 4 months old. Being a labradoodle, Millie will have to be groomed for her entire life so getting use to being handled all over and the sounds and smells of the grooming salon are necessary at a young age. As a typical puppy, Millie didn’t understand the grooming process. She would squirm and squeal to try and get out of it. We started bathing her every few days and working her with the dryer as well as brushing and handling her all over as part of her training program. This helped to get her calm and desensitize her to the grooming process.  Over her stay she learned to stay calm and relaxed while being groomed and handled.

Millie returned to us for more training as she got a little older and was able to be bathed and dried start to finish as well as dremeling her nails and cleaning her ears. She now loves her baths and trims and is polite and steady on the grooming table.

Odie

Date of Graduation: May 2, 2017

Odie came to Quinebaug while in a rescue and the coordinator of the rescue was having difficulty being able to place him.

When Odie first came in, he was out of control and unable to relax. We began teaching Odie, with the point-of-contact, to relax and learn to control his behavior with obedience work.  Odie made a lot of progress during his stay with us.  We worked with Odie patiently to modify his nervous and reactive behavior in certain situations. We socialized him extensively and gave him positive experiences in new situations to help him through his nervous behaviors.  At the end of his program here, he was able to relax and stay in high activity situations, respond reliably off-leash, and became a happy, relaxed dog.

We worked with the rescue to help them figure out the best fit and home for Odie when it was time for him to go home.

After being adopted and going home, we provided support to Odies new owner and helped her work through some situations so that she would know exactly what to do even after going home.

We received an update from Odies family a few months after adoption and continue to work with dogs from the same rescue.  We are so happy to see Odie thrive in his new home!

Penelope

Date of Graduation: May 2, 2017

Penny came to Quinebaug Kennels as a 4-5 month old golden retriever puppy for the 2 week Head Start Program. When Penny first arrived at QK, she was very nippy and jumpy, she would bite at our hands out of nervousness. It was clear she had very little trust in people and little confidence. Head Trainer Jordan instantly picked up on her trust issues and started off slow with her by “just going for a walk.” Penny reacted pretty aggressively by rearing up on the leash and biting at it. It was like having a little alligator on the end of the lead the way she was turning and snapping. It was clear to us that this little golden retriever puppy was going to be a larger challenge than originally thought. As the days went on and Jordan put multiple lessons on Penny they started working as a pack and she started to look to him for direction and leadership.

Penny made huge progress through the Head Start Program however, she was a very challenging puppy and it was clear she was going to be a lot for her owners after only 2 weeks. Because of this, we suggested she stay for the full 5 week retriever program. After Penny started looking for leadership she became one of the most intense working dogs we have seen at her age. We were able to put all the resistance in the past and she redirected all that fight and energy into working. She would do everything she was asked with effort and gave 100% during each lesson. She quickly excelled in the field as well and hunted hard to find game, working for her trainer. Penny was doing things as a 5-6 month old pup that usually you see out of a 1-2 year old seasoned hunting dog. Her athletic ability and drive were unmatched but she made you work for her respect as a trainer.

Penny is a great example of how challenging a young puppy can get and how quickly a dog can develop stress and anxiety if proper leadership is not given at a young age. Mother dogs provide structure, discipline, and leadership to their puppies, which humans quickly take away without even realizing it. Young puppies are forced into a very stressful leader position starting at 7-9 weeks old. Instead of growing up with guidance and leadership pups are faced with obstacles on their own, this is where almost all bad habits develop. As humans, we nurture and raise our children and try to set examples and be good leaders for them. Without meaning to, we do the complete opposite with a puppy.

Penny showed a lot of resistance young but through properly communicating to her we uncovered such and incredible animal that will live a successful life with her owners. If her owners did not get Penny to us at a young age, she would have become extremely powerful and resistant and would never have had a chance to show her true potential.

Bowie

Date of Graduation: February 9, 2016
Bowie first came to Quinebaug in April of 2015 because she was showing some aggressive behaviors at home in New York City. When she came to us, she was growling at anyone she saw and would put on a big scary act to try and intimidate whoever she met. Bowie came in for our 4 week E-collar program to help teach her that she was no longer the leader of her household and that her growling, snapping and jumping was not going to get her anywhere. During her 4 week stay we worked on her aggressive behaviors, which turned out to be fear based. She lacked a lot of confidence and needed to learn to trust people. She also showed she was very nervous of children at home, so our head obedience trainer, Sharon brought in her son (5 at the time) to work with her. She fell in love with him and was obeying his every command. By the end of Bowie’s 4 week’s here she had turned around completely. She was a happy girl who loved to play and wanted to work. With a job at home and being worked daily, she has been doing much better for her owner and he is enjoying her company so much more. Bowie continues to return as an avid QK Training dog to further improve her obedience and work on her socializing with people. She has been on many field trips while here at QK and everyone falls in love with her looks and happy personality.

Baxter

Date of Graduation: February 9, 2016

Baxter did well in our program. He came in with his brother Ranger. Often when people obtain two littermates at the same time and are raised together they will begin to bond too strongly to each other and display behavior issues. With Baxter and Ranger, these symptoms are mild. They do start to display some “pack” mentality when with other dogs, where they will play too rough or try to mount other dogs and “gang up” on other dogs (not aggressively, just a natural pack mentality). We worked with them daily on this when they were in groups with other dogs. We encourage you to work with the dogs separately as much as possible, as well as give them opportunities to play with other dogs separately.
Baxter learned the point-of-contact with the leash, which is our way of communication with the dogs. He knows light cues with the wonder lead as well as the verbal cues for Heel, Sit, Down, Kennel, Place, and Here/Come. Continue to work with him with the leash and practice calm, consistent leadership with him.

We enjoyed working with Baxter! We hope to see him again for further training.