Dog rehabilitation is a wonderful journey to travel on, even with all the tough times and the good it might be one of the greatest experiences of your life. It will without doubt be something which you will always remember, and can draw upon throughout your time with dogs sharing how you went from point zero, to how things changed along the way.
It is often never ending in terms of being aware about your dogs needs, in body, mind & spirit as it is not like repairing a vehicle in terms of once fixed you’re good to go. When a dog is communicating with us, it is sharing its innermost feelings of the environment around it and this is paramount in maintaining understanding and empathy.

Not only for your dog, also the world around your dog needs to be considered when certain stimulus trigger a dog to react we must keep in mind what is best to avoid if required. When we speak and express the feelings we are experiencing, and also projecting it allows for space to explore and change anything that might get in the way of helping our dogs.

Working with a professional who can assist you in understanding your state of mind, and of those close to you is extremely important and takes into consideration the whole picture. I have worked with clients over the past seven years who have began the process of rehabilitating their dogs whilst experiencing extreme anxiety and trepidation, this is the starting point to begin with, being honest and open with everyone involved can be very liberating for them.

Some people require time to discover what is going on for them internally, others who are very aware of their state of mind will know from the first point of contact whether they are at ease with sharing their awareness with the professional. I encourage self discovery as well as honesty with yourselves, and with the behaviourist as this allows for the capacity to make great changes.
When owners admit they are in need of help, and are willing to be vulnerable this is an amazing starting point as the only way is upwards from here. Denial of the situation is of course the opposite of being productive, and will require time & space for the dogs owners before they can begin to undertake the rehabilitation process. Many people who have dogs with extreme behavioural issues are unaware that they are the cause, they seek training methods to cure the dogs issues and refuse to consider their part in what is occurring.

As owners, we can be the cause and the cure in terms of our dogs struggling to cope with their current situations, and this can be empowering to understand as all is not lost if we are willing to be different in ourselves first and foremost. Who we are BEING for ourselves, and for our dogs is a great place to start from, particularly if things are stuck along the way when we are either at the start of implementing a new regime, or going through the process of helping our dogs.

I always describe the process as a journey of discovery when a new enquiry comes in, and owners are talking of expectations in terms of timescale ⏳

If you refuse to experience all the successes & failures (learning not failure), then do not start any training regime with a dog, and do not blame the professional 🥴
However, should you apply yourself with diligence and awareness that it’s all part of the journey with your dogs, you will experience great success and gain incredible knowledge about yourself and your dogs 🌟