Sunday, April 29, 2012


 Apparently, May is National Pets Month. According to a T-shirt I have, it is also National Guide Dog Month. And, for Katrina, May is officially.... "Learn to Love the Gentle Leader! Month". Whatever May might be, Katrina is off to a good start (I know, we still have a couple days till may :D )

Today, we went for a long walk to downtown. I wasn't so sure how Katrina would do, because she's never gone on a walk that long. She was great with the loud noises from the freeway and traffic downtown. We saw some dogs, lots of bicyclists, and runners. She was great! I'm working on her pulling with the flat collar, so all the distractions were a great opportunity for some practice. At the meeting, we practiced being more "random" with our movements on walks- like suddenly changing directions or stopping. We practiced that a bit and it seemed to work!

Once we were in downtown, Katrina was absolutely exhausted. I don't blame her- it was a beautiful, hot day, and the floor of the restaurant we were in was nice and cool. I was pretty sure she was not up for an equally lengthy and hot walk back home, so my brother came and picked us up :) Katrina was pretty happy about that.

Back at home, and after Katrina took a nice hour long nap, we went into the backyard to work with the Gentle Leader. The back yard has always been off limits with Katrina; as a young pup she would eat everything on the ground, and the grass and tanbark was just too tempting. But! She seems to have gotten over the "if it fits in my mouth, its food! yum, dirt!" stage. I put her GL on and took out a tug toy, and she was thrilled to be running around in the previously "forbidden backyard". This was a big step for Katrina- normally the second the GL goes on, she plops down and sulks. We played for a good 10 minutes, racing all up and down the yard. We practiced some off leash come, too. I got her so excited that when I picked up her leash and said "let's go" she didn't even notice the GL on her face... so I just continued walking up our street, and voila! She was finally walking with the GL!

(Above, Katrina smells the flowers in the garden)

I didn't want to push her too far, so our walk of victory was over in about 30 seconds, but I am hopeful!

Well, there is my story of Katrina's success today! She's such a sweet girl, sometimes it's hard to notice her stubborness, but it's there :) Today I think we got one step closer to tolerating the GL! Stay tuned!

(Above, Katrina on a walk. Katrina hopes everyone is enjoying the summer weather!)

~Lauren and Katrina


  1. That's absolutely wonderful. Baby steps with the gentle leader are definitely to be celbrated. Have you seen the new GDB video about introducing young pups to the GL? I think it came out a little after you picked up Katrina.

  2. haha yes they are! I did watch the GDB video, it was great! It's funny, Katrina used to tolerate the GL when I first introduced it w/ help from the video, and then one day, she suddenly refused to walk :) silly puppy!

  3. Way to go, Katrina. Thanks for writing about your puppy raising journey.


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