Beau - A Diamond in the Ruff
I adopted a 1 ½ year old pit bull mix from a shelter in December 2009. Beau is my ‘diamond in the rough’, and he has required a little polishing- to put it mildly. Beau came with separation anxiety, fear of loud or sudden sounds, reactivity to dogs and horses, and had not walked on a leash nor been socialized. When certain strangers approached him, he would duck his head or jump back. Being a pit mix, he has boundless energy and is very strong. He is also sensitive to training methods and raised voices can immobilize him with fear. It’s relatively easy to take a puppy without issues and teach it to sit, stay, etc. It’s much, much harder to work with an adult dog with issues. It requires a lot of patience and experience with rescue dogs and the ‘power’ breeds. I chose Mark because he rescues and works with, rescue cases. I’ve also met his dogs and foster dogs and have seen the difference he can make. Mark offers valuable training guidelines to provide stability and leadership for needy cases: reactive dogs, aggressive dogs, dogs that have not been properly socialized or have been through trauma- like my dog. Additionally, Mark did not buy into the hype about pit bulls- something I unfortunately encountered when seeking a trainer. It has been 6 months and, continuing with the recommendations offered by Mark has made an amazing difference. People in my neighborhood remark on the noticeable difference: he walks on a leash at my side and will remain calm in spite of loud or sudden noises, is able to have managed play sessions, and can be approached by strangers of all ages (at my choosing). He is doing so well, in fact, that we are currently working toward the Canine Good Citizen Certification. I highly recommend Mark and Leader of the Pack Dog Training. He has helped Beau become a stable, more balanced member of our pack."