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Who’s the Boss?

We officially hired a dog trainer to come over last night to help us get control of the crazy dog. What I’d chalked up to puppy behavior was getting a little too old, and so was the dog. She’s a little over a year and a half now, so I decided these were patterns of behavior, not just a puppy doing what puppies do.

I Googled a dog trainer in my area and clicked on the first link at the top, and wow did I get lucky. When I visited Marcia Martin’s website, there were tons of success stories of how she’d turned people’s lives around in just a couple of hours. I picked up the phone and called Marcia, expecting to pay an un-Godly amount of money, weeks of training and tons of frustration waiting for results. I told her about our doggie issues – jumping on everyone, not listening, counter-surfing, pulling the leash, peeing in the house – and she said we could probably address everything in about two hours, in one evening, at a really great price.

I didn’t believe her.

She showed up with a bag of tricks, and she fully expected to have to pull them all out from what I’d told her about Lucy, but in only 15 minutes, she had Lucy calm and cool, relaxed and laying on the floor, just hanging out. She said our biggest issue was this: Lucy was in charge of the house, not us. This meant that Lucy felt like she was having to run the house too, that’s why she never sat down or relaxed. She was behaving like the mother hen, running around checking on everyone, and we needed to take that responsibility away from her first so she would know who’s the boss and second so she could take a break and just chill like a dog is supposed to.

After less than two hours, we pretty much learned everything to get a really good start, now it’s just up to us. The hardest part for me was getting hubs to buy into this because he’s mostly the one that spoils her (he has such a tender heart for animals). But once he saw her behavior and how well she could behave, he immediately left for Target to pick up a couple of water bottles to aide with training (just one of the little tricks we learned for controlling her behavior).

We actually had dinner last night with her laying on the floor right beside us vs. her jumping up to the table or counter. It was great. I'll keep you posted on our progress.



  1. Glad it is workin' for ya!! Love the picture! = )

  2. I hired a trainer to come train "us" the first week we brought Zoe home. It was so worth it.

  3. cute picture! Please share more about the training tips. This sounds like exactly what we're dealing with too.

    When is it ok or do you use the water bottle?? So curious! Thanks for sharing

  4. Thanks for the inspiration! We just started puppy training as well, so far so good. But we all know, it's more about the Humans being trained, more than the dogs! Good luck & keep us posted!

    Love - Love - Love the picture!


  5. I have some friends that need that trainer for their dog AND their child!

  6. So happy to hear it worked! It's amazing what a little discipline will do, and how well dogs thrive on it.

    That is a precious, precious photo too. I can't stop smiling when I look at it!

  7. Great photo! And I love a good golden retriever story!

    Glad to hear it worked. Now you've got me thinking...

  8. Just found your blog and I love it!

    Good luck with all of the training - what a great picture!

  9. Hi, found your blog through I Pick Pretty :) What an adorable dog!!!!!! Would you be willing to share some of the tricks you learned -- specifically the ones that let your dog know you're in charge? Thanks!


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