Feisty Fidos are “yellow light” dogs who are safe with people but show some reactivity toward other dogs making it difficult to take them to public places where they are likely to encounter other dogs. Whereas, “green light” dogs are dogs who do not show any reactivity toward other dogs or people and “red light” dogs are dangerous toward other dogs and/or people (they are best served by private in home training). Michael Burkey of Michigan Dog Trainer conducts a Feisty Fido class at the Humane Society of Huron Valley, in Ann Arbor, Michigan for “yellow light” dogs.
Typically, at the beginning of the class, the dogs and their owners are on the opposite sides of a parking lot at the shelter. This vast amount of space between the dogs allow them to feel safe with each other. As the weeks go by, the dogs are worked closer and closer to each other. The dogs learn to relax in the presence of other dogs and to pay more attention to their owners. And, the owners learn how to better manage their dogs when they encounter other dogs in the real world.
Just four weeks ago, the above pictured dogs were on opposite sides of a parking lot to prevent them from challenging each other. Look at them now! They are within a few feet of each other, non-reactive, and under their owners’ control. They are now ready to enter a Advanced Manners / Canine Good Citizen group class or participate in group dog hikes with other dogs. Congrats to the above dogs and their owners. A job well done!