Hi, I’m Adrian and this is the story of Bobbie the nightmare lurcher pup.
I collected her at 8 weeks and from the start she was difficult; excitable, ridiculously sensitive, aggressive, wild, uncontrollable, and apparently immune to normal discipline. To cut a long story I had a heart attack and triple bypass last October and lost months out of my attempts to train her. The situation was desperate as neither myself nor my partner Val could handle her although I had of necessity been a lot calmer since the operation and that was making a positive difference.
We decided we needed help and Mike was the first name that came up when I goggled dog psychologists and trainers in Scotland. I rang him and was happy we were on a similar page with how to treat dogs and we arranged for him to come and stay overnight on Harris though we got extras out of him when the weather stopped the ferry.
We fed him on curry and fresh eggs while he assessed Bobbie and demonstrated the techniques he would prescribe. We arranged for visitors to arrive and practiced the routine and we walked to rehearse lead training and recall. It was a lot to take in and we were knackered after he left but I was buzzing and keen to get on with it. The main issues we addressed were recall, separation, excitement, reactivity, and pulling on the leash as well as general approach to handling such a difficult dog.
Within days we received our program by email then hard copy by post and started to implement it. Seven months later, the change is stunning. I work on a campsite so she’s had lots of opportunities to meet people and other dogs and she now meets and greats new arrivals to the extent that she is becoming a calm role model for other dogs and greets people politely. She settles while I’m busy with other things and at home and we have got as far as taking her to a restaurant without serious issues (she stood up and whined for a few seconds when she saw a cat outside).
Her walking is easy now though she reacts to traffic sometimes.
Recall is getting there and sometimes sharp like I’ve never had before and separation is easier though does sometimes regress.
The whole experience with Mike has been hugely positive and he has supported us by phone on several occasions. He was good company and conversation; he has huge experience in the field of cynology both academic and practical, has worked with all the trainers, and advised the Scottish government on canine matters and yet is open to ideas and takes one seriously. I would recommend anybody to contact Mike for help. He helped us toward the bright light at the end of the tunnel which we are reaching by exercise, increasingly consistent, and confident application of the method. Thank you, Mike.