Even Puppies Get Anxiety…

Hello poppets,

How are we?

I have spent the last few weeks working with a variety of organisations and charities behind the scenes helping them share some valuable information and resources to those struggling with covid. Yes, despite heavy numbers of covid around the world for some time now, New Zealand’s rates have only recently gone up and we are only now feeling the affects of covid, long covid and all the things that come with it.

Talking of covid…

Today I am sharing with you someone else that has been affected by Covid-19. Now, thank goodness this isn’t in a literal sense, but still sad non the less.

Our wee Lola, blog mascot and puppy extraordinaire has certainly felt the affects of covid. It all started very well seen as her mum was out the house less and less, but when it came to going out the house together and certainly in regards to the 2 metre rule between us all, much confusion was had.

Lola has been going on similar routes for some time now on her walk and would be allowed to meet and greet people during her journey from people to puppies alike. Then came the day that suddenly, she wasn’t allowed to meet and greet. I remember her little face as she looked back at me as much to say “Erm excuse me madam, but I didn’t get chance to sniff that dogs bum?!”

Due to her upset and having to keep the distance, I would resort to crossing the road to save us both walking in the middle of the road or trying to measure the distance by eye. What did this message send to Lola? “Theres a reason we need to stay away from those dogs.” (and it wasn’t covid!)

And thats where it started. Poor little thing now believes that the reason we are keeping away from those dogs, is because we need to and that in turn she needs to protect her mum. Now when walking past people she steps in front of me to protect me and proceeds to glare at dogs and make the most awful noise.

and I mean AWFUL!

As I couldn’t seem to shake this out of her no matter how much I told her that the other dog was ‘so cute’ I resorted to getting a trainer. Beforehand I had sort of guessed covid-19 and the 2 metre distance was the culprit, but our trainer confirmed this for us. In fact, we had to go on a large waiting list as so many others pups had been reacting the same.

I mean, it’s pretty understandable. It has been confusing enough for us to understand when we have the ability to take in these sorts of information, never mind for them!

It was hard to see her being aggressive to other dogs when for so long she had been so much the other way. Thrilled to see anyone or anything that wanted to talk to her and pay her a little attention.

It’s funny to see how when training her and trying to work out what her little brain is doing, it applies so much to us too and reflects the things I teach in my work. A situation made her brain think something and now we’re teaching her brain something else. Making her realise that what her brain told her about things being a threat, wasn’t actually true. I mean, were literally using ERP on Lola!

No, really!

Lola has been in training for a few weeks and is slowly getting better. We’ve worked out lots of things with her and pinpointed her key triggers like being on her lead which makes her feel restricted and like she wont be able to defend herself.

This little berry will be okay and we will get her on track, but it just goes to show, even puppies get anxiety!


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