Canine Conundrums by Jane Goetsch
Nero had a sad ‘new beginning’ last year when one of his owners passed away suddenly. He was rattled and you could almost hear him asking where she was, as he sniffed all over the house. He came through the trauma and is, once again, his usual loving and demanding self. Even though he loves his house-sister, Bonnie, he will often push her out the way so he can have all the attention.
Nero was bred of Schutzhund parents and enjoys a variety of activities, some of which we two leggeds don’t approve of, such as redesigning our clothing! He has learned a huge amount in the last five years and has changed from being very difficult to being joy to work with.
One area in which Nero was difficult to handle was vet visits. As Nero had numerous skin problems, from red itchy or flaky skin to hair that didn’t fall out, he had to visit the vet often. On one of the vet visits early in his training, the veterinary staff noticed a great improvement in Nero’s behaviour, but we still needed to have him jump in the vehicle to go to the vet when asked. Today Nero, not only has a beautiful shiny black coat, thanks to a variety of supplements and the perseverance of Umgeni Vets, but also can’t wait to get in the bakkie. He walks into the vet like a gentleman and is a pleasure to take out, wherever it may be.
Nero has learned through Ttouch and clicker training to think about what is needed of him, to be quiet and calm so he can do what is being asked of him. He has learned to focus and listen. Despite life’s traumas, Nero is a well balanced dog who loves everybody he meets.