photo by Jamie Rosier
Wilma had not been with us long before we knew she'd need help adjusting. She's lovely in the house; obedient, eager to learn, knows her sit and stay, never poos or pees indoors and only barfs if she gets too excited. (We try to keep things calm.) One of my friends even called her a "perfect hostess," and it's true. Wilma will love you as long as you're not a squirrel.
Outside, Wilma she still likes people but as far as John and I can tell, she was never socialized with dogs. She's afraid. Her fear sometimes looks like whining, pulling on the leash or prancing from side to side. Or it can look like growling and some nasty barking of the "I will kill you if you come over here" variety.
The Pasadena Humane Society has all kinds of classes. We got Wilma into their Reactive Rover class as soon as we could. There the head of training, Roberta MacPherson, and her associate, Jamie Rosier, taught our family the essentials of daily walks, avoiding stress and fights, and how to make it all fun for Wilma. (Hint: it has a lot to do with hot dog bits.)
Last Thursday, to the stirring strains of Edward Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1, Wilma graduated. As we all know, graduation doesn't mean you've learned everything. It means you're stepping out into the world, equipped with the tools you need to continue learning.
If you know of a big, wide, fenced in space where we can let Wilma run free a few times a week, we'd love to hear about it. Girlfriend needs to use up some energy.