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Monday, October 10, 2011

Progress with Deenah!

I have been trying so hard to figure out what will help Deenah feel less anxious if I take Dorrie for an outing. It's been a long and sometimes discouraging journey. But lately we have made great progress!

I have tried to establish a routine.
Everyday at approx. the same time (about 11:30 AM):

1. I go to the barn and get hay.
2. I put Deenah and Siog in the barn paddock with several piles of hay here and there.
3. I feed Dorica outside of the barn paddock but nearby where Dee can see her.
4. While Dorica is eating her (smaller pile of) hay, I get my treat bag and her halter and
    wait for her up by the gate.
5. Deenah notices all this but keeps eating.
6. I ask Dorica to come up to the gate and click and treat her when she does.
7. Halter on and off we go, quietly, no muss, no fuss.

I have explained to Deenah that we will return and now she seems to get it.  We're gone for about an hour and Deenah calls a few times but doesn't seem inclined to jump the fence.

When we get back, she is a bit anxious but not hyperventilating like she used to.  Phew - I am thrilled that this is working!  I make sure to reward both Dee and Siog when I get back and everyone is reunited.
This is a HUGE step and I will try hard to maintain some kind of routine so it becomes "normal."

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