Today we met our dog behaviorist Janet. She was recommended by Falmouth Friends of Dogs to help us with Lilly's dog aggression. It was a 90 minute visit while she evaluated Lilly and us. I liked it as I got to see her in the presence of a "real dog person". Like seeing your kids around other grown ups. She acted polite and listened well. Treats and cheese will do that to a dog.
I learned some things I never considered but we also talked so much I am not sure I learned anything about whether this will be fixed. I asked and she didn't really have a definitive answer. I'm a little sad about that.
For now I will work on removing some of the things that trigger her and work on safely removing her from situations that push her past her threshold. Maybe these changes will help and we can go from there.
A big one is the neighbor's dogs. The female stands at the fence and barks at her. Janet took her picture. She also took this picture above. Once inside she explained the stance of the dog next door and that the barking was aggressive. I always thought this was just an asshole dog. So my dog is being poked and bullied in her own yard but she is separated by fence. This would explain why the first time this dog was loose on her lawn Lilly ran out of our yard and attacked her. Not good.
For now we will spend more time in our front yard so there is no direct visual contact. As soon as we were out of eye shot she stops barking. I am considering looking into some fence. Maybe 4-5 sections to prevent eye contact.
Above is her and I working on her watching me. While we walk I repeat watch me and with the help of a little cheese she stayed focused on me while we circled around the back yard and she never looked towards the neighbors dog who was up against her fence barking at us. I am still not sure how this will help me in situations I know we have problems with but I guess it is a start.
We shall meet again in a few weeks to see how she is doing.
If you need help with your furry child check her out. She is trying to build her business here on the Cape.