Sent Max home today with his new handler. I admittedly got a little attached to this guy while he was in for rehab and training :) cut a little sequence showing his progression while here at RYP.
Max came from Montana GermanShepherd BelgianMalinois Rescue. The past history of this 5 year old GSD was relatively unknown but he could not be approached by strangers and had a track record of being tranquilized for vet visits and transport between rescues.
This was a dog that had ZERO reference as to what listening to/working with/trusting a human meant. Because of this, his default was fear and aggression in the presence of people or change. Patiently, he and I built a rapport and worked up to more and more dynamic interactions and instruction. Had to even spend time getting him accustomed to having a collar put on as this seemed to be a foreign concept to him.
Slow and steady he took to the structure of training and began to blossom with confidence. Meeting new people started to become easier and, after some transitional lessons with his new handler, he is ready to start a new positive page in his life. Pumped for these 2...Decided to build in some maintenance training sessions for this team later this spring (they live 2 hours north of me)...figured it would be good for both of them to make the trip for some tune ups..and who am I kidding, I want to see this goofy GSD again :P