Case Study: Joker

We'd like to welcome the next member of the rehabilitation-boarding program. This is Joker, a 1.5 year old Australian Shepherd. 

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Here's a bit about Joker's history, and his owners first contact with us:

Hi Sonny,

I was referred to you while in a pet shop. We have an Australian Shepherd, Joker, who needs a lot of help. He's got ALL the dog problems you could possibly imagine -- vacuum cleaner, broom, separation anxiety, begs for food, etc.,

He was adopted by my mother and was abused in the past.  She couldn't handle him anymore, so my sister and I took him.

I realize he's got a lot of pent up energy and aggression because the living arrangements aren't suitable for him. We live in a condo on a high floor, with a cat and  too many people. There's just not enough space for him to roam around.  We do try to walk him about 4-5 times a day, but even the thought of possibly having to share the elevator with other tenants in the building is dreadful.

We have tried out one training service and paid a lot for it! She basically came 3 times, Joker would listen and obey her but as soon as she left, he would go back to his old self.  It's very discouraging.  We do try our best to enforce all the rules that we have learned from various sources. 

He's actually a very sweet, smart and goofy dog. I was thinking about your boarding program; this might be our last resort...

 

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It's been only a day since Joker arrived, but he is settling in well. Yesterday afternoon we made a visit to High Park where Joker spent a few hours walking with me and some of the The Pack members. He did absolutely fantastic. It's very busy there on the weekends, so he met plenty of dogs and people-- no issues at all, just a few moments of excitement which is totally normal.
Here are some shots of Joker spending some down time at home with Baby and Bunny. We even have Sebstian staying with us for a week, so Joker has plenty of help from his new friends. You can tell in the pictures, he becoming more and more comfortable while in the presence of other dogs.
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Once again, we welcome Joker to Dog Talk and look forward to sharing his journey to rehabilitation and balance.