One of my weekly jaunts takes me to obedience class with Jesse. I love this time for a number of reasons, most notable being the hour of walking that gets us there and back and the time alone with Jess devoted to her training. (As you might guess, at-home training sessions are a rarity.) She is a smart cookie and demonstrates each week that her breed was definitely born to work with humans. This floppy, uncoordinated juvenile delinquent makes me proud each and every class as she transforms before my eyes, picks things up effortlessly and focuses, like a sharp shooter, on the task at hand.
There are several Rowdy Rovers in our current class. It’s been eye-opening to watch them and I’ve realized that the rowdy ones are usually not the bad ones; they’re just reacting to a look or mannerism from a quietly aggressive classmate. And as I listen to our trainer, Mare, I realize that the rowdy dogs are the ones struggling with confidence issues, from lives spent in foster homes or unloving ones, that they need work through. Mare says that nearly all of them can overcome these issues and become happy, well-adjusted pets.
Funny how we have so much in common with man’s best friend. So many of us carry around baggage from the past, struggle to be confident or fight to keep old demons at bay. I’m amazed at how these diligent and loyal hard-workers are able to learn to trust, in humans and in themselves, and rise above whatever happened in their pasts. If only us humans could be as successful!
I am a dog person. And a human person, too. Here’s to all us humans moving forward!