Meet Paddy the Cocker Spaniel
Paddy’s owners first contacted Forrest Animal Behaviour when they started to see that Paddy was struggling to provide them attention during walks. He was also showing some hyper-active behaviours in the house and being unable to settle. This was becoming tiring for Paddy’s owners and their older dog, who just wanted to rest at times.
During Paddy’s first assessment, we found that Paddy was scared of the road outside his home and his harness and lead. This meant that once in the fields during a walk, he was overwhelmed, from having had his harness placed on and walking past the roads. Once home he was then over threshold from the emotions of the walk, leading to him being restless and hyperactive.
For Paddy’s treatment plan, we stopped all walks for Paddy, until he was happy with his harness.This gave Paddy time to decompress and learn that harnesses can be fun to interact with. We also worked on consent work, so Paddy would have the choice to interact with people and equipment when he was ready to and when willing to participate. Once able to have his harness on, we then started to re-introduce small walks again and secure fields to play in while practicing recall. Paddy’s owners were amazing in implementing these changes and allowing Paddy to progress at his own pace. During this time Paddy started to settle at home and relax!
Now Paddy and his owners are enjoying walks again, off lead! He enjoys having his harness on for some biscuits and has gained a brilliant recall, even when busy spanieling! They have compromised with the walks and now travel by car to woodlands, avoiding walking next to the road. Most importantly, they have a lovely calm Paddy at home, who rests and settles with both his owners and their older dog. His owners are now looking to do some scent work with Paddy, and take him new places to continue to build his confidence.