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Several years ago, we were given Jesse, a six month old, Doberman cross who showed signs of having been abused. I just loved her, but she was so fearful of people that I was afraid she would bite someone. I contacted Bryan Hendricks, because I knew he trained police dogs, and I thought he would work well with Jesse. Jesse learned to heal, focus on what I am asking for, to sit, to come, and to lay down for an extended period, if I requested it. After her on and off leach training we decided that she needed to learn control protection as well. By learning control protection, Jesse was taught to defer to my commands on how to interact with visitors. Jesse is much more confident, she comes when she is called, and I know that I can trust her to behave around other people. Due to her past she will always require a degree of caution, but as long as I remember that, I can and do take her out running, horseback riding, and anywhere that I think will be fun for her. She is a much different dog since her training with Bryan. I hear that a lot, and it makes me feel pleased that I have helped Jesse.

Since Jesse had been so challenging, I decided that our second dog was going to be a pushover. We got Champ, a 2-month-old chocolate lab puppy, this past fall. Champ is really kind and the opposite of Jesse in every way. My only complaint is that he loves people so much that he will run off to find someone to entertain. He has deserted me in the park to greet some unappreciative adult, left the barn to play with some kids, and crossed the road to find out who was chatting over there and needed a big puppy to hug. Again, after Bryan worked with Champ, he heals beautifully, goes on the down, and most importantly, will come immediately when he is called, regardless of the lovely people he has found to play with. I guess I learned that even a really sweet dog could require training.

I love my dogs, and I like to take them as many places as I can. I am able to do this because they are well trained. I donít have to worry that they will run off or disregard my wishes, and that is what I wanted. Lucky me!

Alexandra Gripson

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