We had been without a dog for about 5 years and although we were enjoying the freedom we were really missing the companionship of a little dog. I decided to join the Chihuahua Relief & Rescue Society and put my name in to foster Chihuahua’s in need of a temporary home. We got a phone call from CR&R, a 5 year old male named Mojo had been turned in to the SPCA in Prince George and they were going to ship him down to CR&R at the coast. Would we foster him? We readily agreed and made arrangements to pick him up at the airport. Now our past experience with Chihuahua’s were quiet, timid females. Boy, were we shocked when we were greeted at the airport by a noisy, ferocious male Chi. We put him crate and all in to the back seat of the car for the drive home. He snapped, snarled, barked and carried on until we were about ½ way home. By the time we got home he was ready to make friends. He settled in quite nicely with us along with his many behavior problems.
It was a nightmare to take him for a walk. He pulled on the leash constantly. When we met up with other people he tried to charge at them, barking, snarling and running in circles. When we encountered another dog he did the same only ten fold. In the house he was “Jekyll” and “Hyde”, one minute he was a sweet, loveable little dog and the next he was charging and trying to attack my husband if he was too close to me. If someone came to the door he would try to bite their ankles and carry on barking for about 15 minutes. Then when he realized they were not going to hurt him he would go and make friends with them.
We were informed that he had been physically abused prior to being turned over to CR&R so we made some allowances for his aggressive behavior and felt with love and time he would get better. We could not have been more wrong, but by this time we had fostered Mojo for about 5 months and the little guy had captured our hearts and as nobody had come forward to adopt him we decided to adopt him.
We then went looking for help to get his aggressive behavior under control. We had him assessed by a dog trainer and came away from that meeting very disillusioned. We tried several self help books all to no avail. We were floundering when I had a phone conversation with Lisa of CR&R. She told me that she had found a dog trainer who was willing to work with another dog that was in the care of CR&R and had similar behavior problems to those of Mojo. I thought if he can help that other dog there may be some hope for Mojo.
I called Jeff at Sit Happens and set up a time for demonstration. He came to our home and demonstrated his technique with his dogs. As my husband and I watched we were very impressed so we decided to sign Mojo up for some sessions.
On the very first session Mojo learned the “come” command and has responded well to it ever since. We also learned how to control the pulling on his leash in that first session. Every few park sessions we would learn a new command and practice using it.
Mojo now walks beside me to the park until I give him the “free” command in the park. He rarely barks at people and no longer pulls on his leash. His aggression towards other dogs is much better and if he does get aggressive toward another dog I know how to get him under control. Around our home he no longer gets aggressive toward my husband and when people come to the house we know how to control his behavior. He comes when he is called and ”sits” and stays in “place” when told to do so.
We took him on a road trip in September to visit family and were very pleased with his behavior. We had warned everyone that we were visiting that Mojo had some bad habits. He behaved much better than we expected and our family members accused us of giving Mojo a bad rap! (Thank-you Sit Happens!!) Had we not gotten him into the obedience training 4 months earlier we would never have even attempted to take him on a trip where we were going to be around other people all the time.
Jeff is wonderful with all the dogs. We have a good time in the park sessions. Mojo wanted to take Jeff’s leg off at the 1st session but on the 2nd session he was making friends with him. Now he can’t wait to greet Jeff when we enter the park. Mojo has calmed down tremendously and is a much happier dog.
We can’t thank you enough, Sit Happens, for all the help you have given Mojo and us!
Donna, Fred and Mojo