*I decided to put this here because Bentley will be mentioned periodically too.*
So, today was the big day. I left Bentley home (broken hearted) and I took Ky to visit the nursing home this AM.
If you're lost and didn't see my other threads, I'm going to work on Ky getting her TDI. If you don't know Ky's background you can read that here. http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com/...ackground.html (Ky's Background)
Ky has only been to the NH once before, soon after my Ma moved there she asked me to bring Ky. That didn't go well because nobody knew me back then and nobody trusted an Akita. As we walked down the halls people disappeared into rooms.
Ky visited with Ma that day but then I explained that Ky couldn't come back because people were afraid of her. I'm very protective of her feelings and I don't like to see people act that way around her.
Since I go to the NH every morning with Bentley and they are all my friends now I decided to take Ky so I can see what areas we need to work on for the TDI.
Ky did great. She was calm and relaxed, greeted people nicely. Sat calmly beside me while I visited. After about 10 minutes she started doing some visiting too. She would stand next to someone and just wait to see if they would pet her, they did
. They were disappointed because they always save an apple from the night before to treat Bentley with but Ky hates apples
So, I found two problem areas. One I think can be fixed, the other might be a deal breaker.
She was fine with wheelchairs, walkers, lifts ect. Didn't even bat an eye. But as we were walking in the hallway there was a man (Eddy) walking with two cane/crutches things. The kind that go up to mid arm but they hold like a cane.
Ky was terrified of him. I knew it wasn't the man because she was fine with him in the great room. I decided to get her used to the canes the same way I taught her everything else. We just kept walking back and forth near Eddy as I recited poetry to her. Yes, I do know how stupid that sounds but I was on my own when I got her and had to find a way to train her. When we do something scary I recite poetry to her as we walk by it (Keats is a favorite) this keeps my mind busy so that I don't appear to Ky to be uptight and she knows I'm talking to her and I'm calm. We've gotten over many issues like this.
At one point Eddy sat down with his canes in his lap and we approached him. Ky was shaking she was so scared. We backed off for today but I think if we work on it we can fix this problem.
I tried to leave her with a stranger for 3 minutes. Disaster! We are a team and if we're off my property she is always on lead and the lead is always in my hand. I never leave her side in public, ever. I think I've failed her in this dept.
Chris held the lead and I walked out, I went to the next room where I could peek through the window but she couldn't see me. I immediately knew she was stressed. Then she raised her head and began her pitiful howl. She didn't break the sit but it was pathetic to watch. After only one minute I gave up and went back to her. She acted like I had abandoned her and cried, tried to get on my lap, I felt horrible.
I'm not sure I can fix this problem. I don't even have any idea how I would go about trying.
They loved her at the NH so I'm going to alternate Bentley and Ky everyday. It will be a shame if Ky can't get her TDI because she would be good at it but I just don't see a way to get her to stay with a stranger for 3 minutes. We'll keep working on it. Even if she can't get certified at least she'll be able to go see her new friends so I call it a win.