Today we spent the morning with a local trainer. Cindy has a nice warm and dry facility, which was great since it sheltered us from the very stormy, windy, rainy Oregon weather. It also sheltered a frog and two other dogs, who, along with the storm outside, provided a sufficient amount of distraction.
(On a side note, she thought that Coop’s groomer had done a nice job. I’ve been doing the grooming, so I was amazed and pleased, but really, I’ve just been trying not to mess up the grooming Colleen R. did for me.)
Basically, she says we have a “teenager” who has frequent out-of-body experiences. We got some valuable hints about going back to some basics, like feeding him everything from the hand over the course of a day to reward all “rewardable” behaviors, shortening his leash so that he gets less traction for going into a lunge, trying a head halter, lots of other stuff.
What was most reassuring were her comments that we’ve been doing fine up to now, that Cooper’s behavior is normal, and that we can all get through this without losing our minds.
Cooper slept most of the 45 minute ride home.