The other day I was visiting a friend of mine. We had a lovely time chatting and updating each other on various things, including my learning with Natural Dog Training (NDT) and the dogs. When I got up to go, her toy poodle started to jump up and bark frantically. My friend has been trying to stop her dog barking and asked me, with my understanding of NDT, if she could use that to help. Not professing to be an expert, but based on what I had learnt from the leaders in the field, I explained that my understanding would be for her to look first within herself.
'What is going on for you?' I asked.
'Well, I'm annoyed, it stresses me out this barking and jumping up, what am I supposed to do about it?' she answered.
'But before that' I pressed, 'What were you feeling before she started jumping that might represent a trigger for her behaviour?'
My friend thought for a second and then said
'…...That I am interested in our conversation and that I don't want you to leave'
I suggested that she could work with that feeling and see if it made a difference. My friend went with the idea and said that she was letting go of the need to hold on to me by reminding herself that I would be back. The little poodle was relaxed at her feet within seconds.
Can it really be that simple?!
Then I am reminded that, when we feel compelled to offer advice to others, we are usually well-advised to follow that advice ourselves! Who thought working with your dogs could be so insightful? It's great 🙂