Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Long time since last posting....

I apologize for the huge gap in updating this blog...been so busy with other blog and Facebook, shame on me!
Thorne is approaching 3 years old in a few weeks and is our loveable sweetheart and comical brat all in one. He makes our daily grind bearable and happy for us. He is such a love!!
Here are a few pics....some recent and some when he was a of the pics is from Puppies USA 2012, in which he is published in....YAAAY Thorne :)

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Off Leash Snowy Winter Romp.....

We took Thorne back up to Tufts open field's been awhile. We tried to avoid other dogs but ended up meeting up with them anyhow and Thorne did great!! Very proud of him. Only a couple of times when he did the between the legs hide, but then went up to them and met with no hackles up, no growls, with just a little bit of unsure type of fear. He was just so happy to be running in the snow!! Seems to be that his confidence is growing as he ages.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

We just love our amazing sweet boy....

Here's two recent photos of our big "Baby Huey" boy, Thorne. He is a love!! He recently had his checkup and was so patient with his vet. He's a tolerant dog with people. He never grew up with kids nor had much socialization with them as a pup, but he did so good during the holiday parties with my husband's young nephew and niece.
He's such a good boy :)

Friday, October 09, 2009

Thorne voted in for 2010 Calendar!!!

Our boy's sweet pic I took when he was just a wee lad has won the monthly photo contest through Doberman Talk Forums!! Each month a theme is chosen (this one was "Dobermans and Their Toys" ) and members of the forum all around the world submit their photos. Then finalists are narrowed down and a voting poll is posted and the members choose their fave pic.

This is the first year this forum is doing this calendar (proceeds go to the website)... Thorne is going to be the photo for July 2010....pretty awesome!! :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Another private lesson....

We went back up to NH on July 28th for another lesson with Julia. This time, she had me do all of the handling of Thorne. I have to say the entire training that day couldn't have went better. She had faith in me which in turn gave me confidence when it came time for other Dobes to come into the room, one that Thorne has never met before and one in tact male. Both times, Thorne responded well to my handling, no aggressive reactions. I was proud of him and myself :)
It was a very good session.
Since then, Rob has taken Thorne to the park and his reactions to other dogs is improving greatly. Can't say the same for his own neighborhood though :( He seems much more reactive to other dogs when not far from his house or sees them from within our yard. I wonder if it's because he's so attached to our other dog Maggie that he feels need to protect her in this area.
Still, there is progress being made and we will continue to make progress. Rome wasn't built in a day :)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Training with Thorne continues at home

Training went very well with Julia at FK9. She brought him into the training room on homecoming day and it was amazing how he was so focused with her and looked happy to boot! He's been testing us big time since he's been home! We missed him a lot and have been a little soft with him but need to start getting back on track. He knows the obedience and we need to keep it up. We have only been soft as leaders, but still train with him daily. I am the biggest offender of being a weak leader. Too much affection from me. Shame on me!

We did go up to NH for another training session with Julia on the 13th and that went very well. She also showed us how to train Maggie up!! Julia is great to work with. She really listens, shows us how and understands. We as owners though, must be some tough customers for her. Hard to train us :( Thorne and Mags are ez, we are the prob.

We wanted to check out the CGC testing up there yesterday but never made it. We aren't ready for Thorne to take the test but wanted to observe. We would like to have him ready for when the next CGC testing comes around though.

Instead, yesterday we went down to the park area around Lake Ave and trained with Thorne a bit. He did very well, considering how aggressive from fear he can be and used to be on a leash. He used to pull a lot as well, but he walks much better now. This training in the video is not his best session to date.... He's not very focused and we have had much better days with his attention more on us. Considering his focus was not right on his handlers, he still did well. Check it out.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Two weeks at school so far and doing great !!!

For past two weeks we have been in touch with our trainer for Thorne, by email and telephone. She is taking such good care of our boy and everyone that comes in contact with Thorne seems to just love him. He's made quite an impression with them there :) A few of them there say he's a big Baby Huey !! She's sent photos of him training as well as him playing in the yard. He really looks relaxed and happy.

Julia said just of recent that he heels like a dream :) He's mostly choosing obedience over aggression when faced in an unsure situation which is good. We really need to step up to the plate as leaders now. He needs that extra boost of confidence from us on walks now, more than ever to keep him going in the right direction.
What is also very good news is that Julia thinks he should be ok when it comes time for his CGC testing!! Wow!!!

We have been missing him like crazy but almost feel guilty at the same time because we will be taking him away from all his new friends (canine and humans) when he comes home in another week. He really seems to have adjusted well and we are happy that he has a stable enough temperament where he adapted to new situations, routines and environments with ease. That's great. He's got some independence going for him now which he needed away from home. Sometimes, it really is good for a dog to learn away from his usual environment. We are going to change things up a bit at home as well , so he doesn't come back to same old routines.

Very excited for our big loveable goofball :) He is such an awesome boy!!! He's going to be a year old tomorrow... Wish we could be with him for his Bday but he is doing great at school and that's ok by us.... sometimes, you have to make sacrifices.

Anyways, HAPPY BIRTHDAY THORNE, We love you!!!
(UPDATE: Thorne will be staying a fourth week for more recall work...our boy comes home the Fourth of July!!)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Doberman Rescue Unlimited

We attended the Annual Summer Open House at DRU again this year and
took photos, donated some items and had the routine shelter tour.
We were in the area on the same day (brought Thorne to Boarding
School) so it worked out good for traveling.

PHOTOS can be seen Here:

" Dogs are our link to paradise. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a
glorious afternoon is pure paradise. Its when doing nothing is not
boring, its peaceful. "

Monday, May 04, 2009

Fortunate K9 future student!!

Thorne had his evaluation today with Julia at Fortunate K9. She was very knowledgeable and thorough in answering any questions we had about training Thorne as well as his behaviors. She gave us as much time as we needed for the evaluation. Thorne went up to her when we first brought him in the room and did the usual hand sniff. She is such an honest person to talk to and right away we felt comfortable with what she had to say. We showed her what we have taught him so far, basic sit, down and stay (though he only listens well and obeys these commands if he knows a treat is coming).
Julia then put her own leash on him and walked him around the large indoor training area. He protested a bit at first but then walked with her and even ended up in a down near her. She gave him ample opportunity in her testing, to see his reactions towards her and he did well. He has a high threshold/ tolerance level and didn't try to bite her, whew. He did have a disturbing, submissive pee and fearful reaction when brought into another room where a Shepherd happen to be waiting with his owner. Thorne wasn't expecting to see the dog and had a difficult time with the surprise. Julia took him back into the room with us and then took him back into the same room with the Shepherd to end the experience on a better note. Thorne fearfully walked in with her and she had him sit. He then watched her to see what to do next. He almost knew she was in charge of things at that moment. She did say his fear/shyness is deep within him :( She also said he is still young and impressionable and obedience training will help his confidence though he will still be the reserved dog that he his but more manageable. She did mention he is a bit overweight, which we had suspected but weren't sure. Her huge acreage yard will get him very toned she said, as there is a hill he will be able to run up and down for extra fitness.
We set up Boarding School to begin for Thorne with her at the end of our meeting. She didn't influence us to set this up right away, she even said we can call her if we want to think about it more. She was such a sincere trainer and everything we have researched on this school, made us ready to make the decision right then and there. June 7th will be the day he goes!! excited for him and at same time going to miss him like crazy!! This is really going to be good for him. He will learn focus so much better than at home, too. Going to start a training diary of his progress with them and then with us in the follow up classes.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Thorne enjoying warmer Spring weather....

Finally it's a real Spring day here in New England and Thorne is relaxing on the patio after running in the yard with Maggie. He looks like an adult but still very much a puppy (playful and happy puppy at that!)....
He is recovering well from his neuter and umbilical hernia surgery. Keeping his excersise to a minimum has been very difficult for this energetic boy. He seems to have calmed down slightly from the neuter so far (he used to pace in the house and pant a lot more) ....His hormones are slowly diminishing. I will update the progress of just how much his neuter will affect him in the next few weeks. Here's a pic of our happy boy :)
(click on photo to view larger)

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Thorne is getting neutered today....

I am writing this after midnight, can't sleep yet, worried about my boy :(   It's been a long journey with him thus far and he's such a sweet boy who has so much potential to be the most amazing carefree dog. 
 We decided not to wait any longer on neutering... he's been developing some escape/roaming habits right in front of us in our own yard (keep fixing the fence) and he's an inside dog, it's not like he's out in the yard all day or anything, just for playtime and potty breaks while we do yard work, etc. 
We have a few unspayed females doggies in our neighborhood as well, which is very distracting for Thorne ;)  On his last Tufts walk, he wanted to mount a dog and he's getting more hyper due to the Testosterone, we believe. His growth has been great up to this point and I think neutering at his age (9 1/2 months and 98 lbs) should be ok. We are not expecting behavior miracles with his neuter but maybe more focus on the continued training and desenstizing of his fear aggression with some dogs. 
He's reserved and a bit shy with people (he'd rather approach and sniff hands than be approached) but not to the point of aggression like he sometimes can be with other dogs. The Doberman standard is that they are reserved with people other than their owners.  There is a Dobie at Tufts and when we try to pet her, it's not happening either...she definately doesn't care for being pet by people. 
We have tried the "socializing" method since he was first brought home as a pup with us 'till now and we do train him at home to sit before he goes out, to sit before he eats, to lay down when we ask him, to stay...etc. He does very well and he's very loving with us and Maggie, our other dog. 
The ironic thing is that Maggie was supposed to get more confidence (she was very timid when we rescued her) with a new confident pup around that was going to be brought up properly. Well, we brought him up by the books, did everything that a new pup needs for social development and he's still struggling in many situations.  Maggie has come a long way since we first got her and she has MORE confidence than Thorne. This has been extra difficult for us due to the fact that we never had shy dogs like this before. Our dogs prior were friendly and outgoing and we had them for 12-13 years. 
I found a wonderful and hopeful trainer on the web that worked for years at Doberman Rescue Unlimited in NH. She rehabbed and trained many, many Dobes over the years and knows the breed very well. She still owns Dobermans as well and her and her colleage opened up a school called Fortunate K9 in NH. The articles she wrote on her website were eye opening and finally I feel like Thorne will get the proper help he needs from someone who understands the breed. She replied to my email about Thorne and explained how it's unfortunate, but that many Dobermans have a temperment deficit of shyness. I am not saying our breeder has bred shy puppies at all, in fact his brothers and sisters from the litter seemed very outgoing compared to submissive Thorne. He just happen to maybe get that one gene which could be from far back in his bloodline of relatives or his littermates bullied him too much. Julia's (of Fortunate K9) article called The Shy Dog Primer is excellent! I also have contacted a Doberman Talk Forum member who has gone to Fortunate K9 and she highly recommends them. 
My husband and I have made up our minds on this school being our next step to help Thorne live a much happier life. He's happy as a clam at home and on walks also, as you can tell by his expressions in his photos Off Leash but he has those very fearful moments that basically set him back from remaining relaxed and happy. He deserves the best and to be free to enjoy all that life has to offer without anxiety. 

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Some Patricia McConnell Books worth reading....

I found these books on Amazon while browsing and saw their fantastic reviews... I also listened to Patricia McConnell on a podcast recently and she seemed very interesting and honest. Of course I rushed right out to Borders to see if they were there, and only one was, THE OTHER END OF THE LEASH. I had to purchase it and am glad I did. Still reading it and really enjoying it. I also listen to podcasts on my iPod while working and decided to try my first audio book to listen to as well. FOR THE LOVE OF A DOG is in audio book format and an award winner and I see why. It's fantastic!! I am going to be so upset when I finish it because it's that good and I look forward to resuming the audio book daily while working. These books help you to really understand your dogs way of communicating. Highy recommended!! I just ordered the Fiesty Fido book by her as well. It's about helping dogs with leash dog aggression (usually caused by fear) issues.

Friday, March 06, 2009

One of the many fun days, playing with other dogs!

Thorne had a great day with my hubby today up at Tufts Field. He was happily playing with other dogs and fetching sticks with them, just having a great time. They all walked together (with their owners of course) for awhile.  
Thorne's hormones are going crazy though, got a little too friendly with a female doggie. Rob put a stop to that.!
I hope we can hold out on neutering him 'till around 12 months like we planned. I firmly believe it is beneficial, as far as his growth goes, to neuter when they are a bit older, rather than the 6 months mark that has been pushed for decades.  His hormones tell the body when to stop growing and when they are removed too soon, the growth plates do not close when they are supposed to which could later lead to ligament tears and other injuries, particularly in the legs.

Excellent Article on Fear Aggression from Best Friends' Website

 Article by Ann Allums ,Certified Pet Dog Trainer, Best Friends Animal Society

Fear aggression typically involves defensive behavior based in fear. For example, the dog growls, barks, and/or displays teeth to make the scary object (person, other dog, noise) go away. The defensive behavior continues because it usually works for the dog! Dog parents should understand the problem from the dog’s perspective rather than assume the dog is being irrational, because dogs are always true to themselves.

There is no one “recipe” for solving fear aggression, as each dog is unique. However, helping a dog with fear aggression generally involves dealing with the underlying issue of fear, using conditioning techniques to help change the association of the fear. The list below defines these conditioning techniques, and describes related suggestions for a total approach to looking at dog behavior:

  • Prevent situations that provoke the defensive behavior as much as possible. The more a dog engages in a particular behavior, the better he gets at it. Since the behavior is repeatedly rehearsed, it becomes more ingrained, and is completed (and thereby self-reinforcing).
  • Begin regular obedience training. Training increases the communication and understanding between a dog and handler. It also helps the dog learn and perform acceptable behaviors. Use reward-based training, which is giving your dog things she wants for doing what you want, to foster trust and to motivate your dog. Include relaxation exercises, come when called, and loose leash walking in your training regime. In addition, simply pay close attention to positively reinforce any desirable behaviors during the day. Dogs do what works for them, and they will also repeat what works for them. So, catch your dog in the act of doing something appropriate (chewing a bone, being quiet, watching you); aim for at least 25 times per day that you positively reinforce your dog. Some good books for novice dog trainers are Dog-Friendly Dog Training by Andrea Arden and The Power of Positive Dog Training by Pat Miller. For more in depth information, read The Culture Clash by Jean Donaldson, which explains many aspects of dog aggression.
  • Utilize classical conditioning with systematic desensitization and counter-conditioning. Desensitizing is gradual exposure to a fear provoking experience, starting at a point that does not provoke the fear--and only increasing the intensity of exposure if the dog is relaxed. Counter-conditioning is the process of associating a previously feared thing with something highly pleasant, like food. Take, for example, the dog who is fear aggressive toward other dogs. The handler would take the dog on a walk, and as soon as the dog sees another dog, the handler begins feeding high-value treats (like roast beef, chicken, cheese). The feeding continues as long as the other dog is in sight; as soon as the other dog leaves, the feeding stops. With repetition, the fearful dog learns that other dogs predict great treats. A good resource for these conditioning techniques is the booklet The Cautious Canine by Patricia McConnell. Or enlist the help of an experienced dog trainer or behaviorist to make sure the timing of the rewards and duration of sessions are accurate. You can search for certified trainers in your area at If the aggression is directed toward humans, a professional dog trainer should definitely be consulted. Changing a dog’s underlying emotional response takes lots of time and patience, but these methods work well on fear aggression.
  • Learn to watch your dog for signs of distress. These signs may include a subtle tensing of her muscles, lip licking, excessive panting, head turning away from a fearful situation, yawning, freezing, biting the leash, whining, or growling. (Growling, by the way, should never be punished, since that is an appropriate communication warning from the dog that she is uncomfortable and/or scared.) When you see any sign of fear or stress, protect your dog from the distressing situation. For example, increase the distance from the scary situation, step in between your dog and the object of your dog’s fear, or use a squirt bottle on an approaching dog to ward off further advances.
  • Make sure you are relaxed yourself, because your dog will mirror your emotional state. Diffuse a potentially tense situation by invoking Bill Campbell’s “Jolly Routine,” in which the handler becomes jolly (singing a happy song, talking happily to your dog, dancing, etc.) It really works!
  • To further increase the responsiveness of your dog to you, try having him earn everything in life (e.g. sitting for petting, getting treats, going outside, getting whatever he wants), and appropriately taking away the reward for any inappropriate behavior (e.g. giving time-outs, withholding treats or attention). This program is also known as “nothing in life is free.” Have your dog sit or down or any other known behavior before he gets his food bowl, go outside, get belly rubs, etc. Dogs seem to thrive when they have jobs. Having a dog earn what he wants also helps to reduce tensions and anxieties that may arise in some situations because of a dog's uncertainties of who is in charge.
  • Teach tricks and agility to your dog. As a dog learns new skills, his confidence grows, so he is not as fearful overall. In other words, the dog learns how to make good things happen.
  • Do not use punishment for a fear aggression issue. Punishment makes a fearful situation even more unpleasant for a dog, could create mistrust toward you and an increased dislike of the scary object, and increases stress. Focus instead on setting up training so that your dog has successes and positive experiences.
  • Don’t try to force your dog to experience the object or situation that is causing him to be afraid. For example, if he is afraid of bicycles and you force him to stand in place while bicycles whiz by, he’ll probably become more fearful, rather than less fearful of bicycles.
  • Make sure your dog gets lots of exercise. Exercise does not directly solve a fear issue, but meeting a dog’s exercise needs may prevent other behavior problems. A tired dog is a good dog!
  • It never hurts to rule out a medical problem when behavior changes. A dog may benefit from a vet exam to make sure she feels well, and many vets now have behavioral training to help you further.
  • Diet is related to many behavior problems, and can affect your dog’s mood, so experiment (with vet assistance if desired) with various high-quality dog foods. Read the ingredients on the label; premium and super-premium dog foods have whole meat sources in the top 3 ingredients, as well as whole grains. Make sure the food contains no corn, no by-products, and no preservatives, as these ingredients could negatively affect behavior. The periodical “Whole Dog Journal” ( tests and publishes an annual list of excellent dog foods.
  • Since fearful dogs can improve with less anxiety, consider using Bach’s Rescue Remedy, a homeopathic calming aid. It is made from flower essences. The theory is that each flower embodies a certain quality, and if an individual is resisting some quality, he/she is out of touch with that aspect of his/her nature. Rescue Remedy is specifically for dealing with stress. It certainly is harmless to try; you only use 4 drops in the dog’s daily water intake. You can purchase Rescue Remedy at health food stores or natural foods stores.

As a safeguard against the development of fear aggression, dogs should be thoroughly and properly socialized. This means gradually exposing your puppy to different people, places, things, surfaces, noises, and situations. The key is to introduce these novel things as your dog can handle it, rather than overwhelming your dog. During socialization, don’t coddle your dog for acting shy. Let your dog approach a new thing at his own pace, and leave if he wants.

Additional information about canine aggression can be found on the Best Friends website, at this link:

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Calming Signals Article .... a must read!!

This article found on Turid Rugaas' website has opened my eyes to how Thorne meets dogs and handles his fear in his own (submission and calming signals) language on walks. 
Very interesting find and I just might have to purchase this book by Turid Rugaas  :) Her website also has a fantastic Q & A page!

Here is an excerpt from the article (the entire article is on the website which is linked above) :

Never force dogs into meeting others

Allow the dogs to use their language in meeting situations so that they feel safe. Sometimes they will walk up to each other and get along, other times they feel that it´s safer to stay at a distance - after all, they have already read each other´s signals, they do so even at a several hundred meters distance - there´s no need to meet face to face.

In Canada, dog trainers who attended my lecture, came up with a new name of these calming signals: ´The Language of Peace". That´s exactly what it is. It´s a language which is there to make sure that dogs have a way to avoid and solve conflicts and live together in a peaceful manner. And the dogs are experts at it.

Start observing and you will see for yourself. Most likely, you will get a much better relationship with your dog and other dogs, too, once you are beginning to realize what the dog is really telling you. It´s likely that you will understand things you earlier were unable to figure out. It is incredibly exciting, as well as educational.

Welcome to the world of the dog, and to knowledge of a whole new language!

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Rant over....time to try something new...Amichien Bonding

My last post vented frustration as being proud dog owners to a large sweet dog that has a wonderful personality and is very loving. The frustration is the fear he shows in public around other dogs. This fear sometimes puts him in a state of mind where he feels he needs to bark and growl at another dog to scare them off, which in turn is not good for a Doberman to do because it only adds to their bad reputation, unfortunately.
After many podcasts, puppy training classes (when he was much younger, that did more harm than good) and many, many books and internet searches on how to handle this...I found a new book that I heard someone discussing on Good Dog podcasts (Aug 12, 2008 podcast) and it seems like I have found something that will help us in becoming better leaders for Thorne and Maggie.
I plan on taking Thorne to a much better and more reliable training school that understands Dobermans (they are very sensitive and shut down if not trained in a certain way). That is our next step after neutering Thorne (he needs to be neutered soon as it might help him not be so sidetracked with his hormones and he will be able to focus on training better) and giving him more positive home training as we become even better leaders. I am always looking for new ideas and this book seems to be just what we were looking for. I will post on the progress made using the Amichien Bonding method by Jan Fennell. I am already on chapter 3 and find it to be a really interesting and enjoyable read. Her book also has numerous great customer reviews on

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Thorne still has many fearful moments...Dog Owner Rant!

                                                                 This is just so sad and frustrating for poor Thorne and us. From before he was even born, we were making logs to keep track of his socialization and making sure he's exposed to lots as a young puppy to avoid this in the future. Well, turned out our puppy we picked was a reserved pup from day one in taking him home, very different from his littermates who seemed very outgoing. We had our work cut out for us.
We started taking him everywhere, even before all his shots to view people, sounds, dogs and the world. I bought tons of puppy raising books and read many articles on socializing and thought we were doing everything right, or were we? Maybe we oversocialized at first, too much at once made him overwhelmed and frightened him more than helping him. 

This is where I now start my rant. I just get upset when I look up articles or hear on forums how a fearful dog must have been abused or not socialized enough. This is just not always the case and people have to admit that in a litter of puppies there are many different personalities. They are not all the same and it's not the breeder or owner's fault all the time as implied.  There are dominant bully pups, docile easy going pups, energetic playful pups and submissive shy pups to name a few. Of course owners should manage their dog's certain personality type accordingly and do the best they can for their dog's particular issues.

This brings me to another rant, the phrases "Bad Dog" and "Bad Owner"....grrrr. Other people, whether dog owners or not who see a dog such as Thorne being Dog Fear Aggressive think "wow, is he a vicious dog!" or "wow, those owners shouldn't have him if they aren't going to train him right".... Please stop stereotyping any dog that has an issue because someday you might end up with a pup or rescue that has issues that need to be worked on as well. Our boy is very submissive and only gets defensive when another dog keeps at him , sniffing or jumping on his face or being very dominant over Thorne to the point where he is scared crazy! This is fear aggression not him being vicious! Ninety percent of the time, he is very playful and enjoys other dogs company. His confidence has improved with meeting and greeting other dogs and romping through the fields with them. It's when that one bad experience (every so often) from another dog comes along that changes all the hard work and basically makes Thorne start from scratch again. We are learning a lot about training and behavior modifications because of our sweet but fearful boy. He is helping us to understand dogs in a whole new way than we've ever had before. He's not our first dog, we've had a few and were a bit lazy about training but now we are stepping up to the plate and want to help our canine friend overcome his fear aggression.
To all dog owners: Your dog is no better than any one else's dog. It seems that dog owners have this ego about how good their dogs are and look down upon you for not having your dog behaving perfectly. Have you ever thought, that just maybe, the owner and dog are working on reaching their goals, too. Please hold back on the judgements. That same way of thinking is what started the Breed Banning laws which I will not rant too much about at this time... But it is wrong... for every aggressive Rottie, Pit Bull or Dobie out there, there is an aggressive Lab, Golden or Poodle...same goes for all the cuddly loving dogs that wouldn't harm anyone intentionally... the so called "Bad Breeds" can be just as loving and friendly to everyone. It depends on the individual dog, NOT the breed.

Ok, now I am going to make a plead to all Dog Owners to be more attentive to their dogs. An incident recently happened at Tufts on Tuesday while my hubby was walking Thorne just as he always has before. Thorne was happy, running and sniffing and carefully meeting dogs. They were really having a great day. Well, this group of dogs and their owners were just up ahead and the dogs came over to meet Thorne and all was good until one of the young dogs was being dominant aggressive with Thorne and everytime Thorne wanted to walk away the dog would block him and growl. My husband and Thorne were handling this fine, as Thorne would sit and wait and they would try to stand and leave again but the same thing kept repeating for approximately four to five times. Rob was proud of how patient Thorne was being with this dog. So, my hubby Rob, yelled to the owners of the dogs to ask who owned this particular dog that was aggressive with Thorne, no answer as they were all caught up in a big conversation not watching what was going on. Well, something did get their attention all right, when Thorne finally had enough and started barking and growling and lunging back at this dog in defense mode. Well, the look of horror at this viscious Doberman of ours from the group of dog owners was enough for Rob to get very upset with the owner when he came over to "save his dog". He said his dog was only four months old (he was big for four months) and by that time, Rob was really frustrated with the situation and bleeding from his chin after a good bump from Thorne's head in the struggle to keep dogs seperated. Good day, not so good anymore. Of course all fingers are now pointing at Thorne which is very frustrating because he is such a sweet dog and we don't want people to get the wrong impression and continue giving Doberman's a bad rap.
Thorne is fearful of dogs but deals well and is getting better for the most part. He's never bitten any dog , just trying to scare them off in his own defense. We want to break him of this before it becomes a reaction he takes on for life. Maybe other dogs are picking up on his submissiveness and it makes him a target to be dominated. Just a thought. 
We have traveled to many off leash trails, met many dogs and walked countless times at Tufts without any problems. Of course he hides between our legs at first when spotting other dogs, but we are trying to discourage that. It's less than a handful of times that this has happened. He has a great recall and sticks with us really well. Sits when asked and is a reserved with people but sniffs their hands if you let him come to you. He's never aggressive with people, and I don't think he ever will be. He actually has licked total strangers hands a few times and takes treats from people he meets as well.

This is what I want to ask of other dog owners (for everyone's safety):
  • Please be more attentive to your dog and don't let him stray too far.
  • Make sure he/she comes to you when called.
  • Know your dog- if he is a puppy (such as four months) don't trust him because he has been ok so far, keep a closer eye on your new puppy. Not all dogs get along just as not all people do. All dogs have the natural instinct to be defensive if needed and all dogs are capable of fighting at one time or another, regardless of which dog started it. Keep your dog safe by keeping him with you. One dog owner can't control two dogs that have a conflict with each other. Both dog owners need to be in control. Please take this advice for the good of all dog lovers and don't get defensive about it.
  • Keep dog meet and greets short, especially if it looks like the other dog's owner seems to want to keep moving. If two dogs are playing and getting along good, that's great...just keep watch on the interaction. Also, be happy your dog is happily playing :)
  • Don't be too quick to judge - All dogs are different and have different personalities, fears and temperments. Please be understanding of that and give the owner the benefit of the doubt that they could be at that moment working with their dog and training them to act differently.....Remember this quote when judging a dog breed as well --> "It's not the size of a dog in a fight, it's the size of the fight in a dog "

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Thorne visited in-laws again....

Here he is nice and relaxed on their rug. My hubby said he did great, no hesitation to go in their house and was curious but still kinda shy. He sniffed hands and then licked hands and faces, especially good with my husband's Aunt whom has Emphysema and I am wondering if he sensed that she has an illness.... If so, my hopes of him as a possible Therapy dog a couple of years from now might not be so far out of reach.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Snowin' again....

The snow just keeps falling this Winter! Thorne seems to have adjusted to it happily :)
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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Snowy walk n' play....

It's been quite the Winter so far, lots of snowfall in New England and it's not over yet. Thorne doesn't seem to mind the snow and likes to eat mouthfuls of it in between play. Here he is yesterday at Tufts (pics taken by iPhone, sorry about the quality) when my husband took him for his walk. He met up with his friend, Herra the Dobie, and enjoyed some playtime. He used to be so much smaller than her, to see him just as big amazes me. It's gonna be a frigid cold week... prob not too much more walking this week. :(

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Just over Six Months Old now .....

 Since our last post we re-weighed Thorne and he is 74.6 pounds. He's feels so solid when hugged....lots of muscle on this puppy. When he runs, he sounds like a horse galloping :)
Here is a link of the best pics from 2-6 months old (iphone users can view as well )

Monday, December 22, 2008

Thorne is officially 6 months old!!!

This past weekend he turned six months old and weighed in at 69 whopping pounds! He is such a sweet boy that loves giving kisses. Life is so much fun for him....all about playing day and night :)
We had some big snowstorms in our area and he seems to like the snow but gets cold quick.
Hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

20 Weeks Old.... (with photo gallery link)

It's been a little while since my last post....been busy with this beautiful energetic boy of ours.  Took him to be weighed at the vet on Nov. 7th and he was 50 pounds :) He's such a sweetheart. His Dobie traits are coming through while he ages.... He watches us a lot (not just Maggie anymore) and he catches onto routines quickly. 
He doesn't mind the many car rides at all, he actually uses it as rest time :) 
He has been walking lots with us at Tufts and other trails, off leash! Want him to learn young to stick with us and he does great.  Still reserved with people but this is a Doberman trait and just might always be that way. Never aggressive with people though...just doesn't care for them to pet him really. He sniffs their hand calmly and gentle.  He loves to run and play with other dogs. He's going to be a fantastic adult dog, I just know it!! :)  He loves giving kisses on our faces and on my mom's hand when she visits. He is a SWEETIE.  Falling in love with this Dobe.  
   Check out some pics here of Thorne :  First Five Months 

Monday, September 22, 2008

13 weeks...going on 14 Weeks

Haven't posted in a bit, Thorne's been keeping us busy :) Still taking him to parks for walks and socializing. He's also started basic obedience classes a week ago. His next class is tomorrow. He seems to be getting the sit really well (with a little tug on leash after walking in a somewhat heel) . He always sits at home for lots of stuff like waiting for his dinner, treats, basically if we ask him to sit, most of the time he complies. 
 He is also doing the down with a treat pretty good now. This morning he was out in yard with me and responded the best he has ever with the "come" command for a treat. Very uplifting to me knowing he has such potential even though he can be easily distracted and hyper at times....but he is just a puppy. 
He is a good pup though, just wants to play as he should enjoy his youth :) Our only big wish: please ease up on the rough playbiting....OUCH!