Millie is now 2.5 years old. I would say who she is is now pretty solidified.
Our previous obstacles in the last post were:
- Issues recovering after a scary event or thing.
- Uncomfortable in new environments.
- Resurge in crate barking in new locations only.
I would say she recovers now very quickly if anything is "off" and she is much much more confident. She can still get anxious in brand new places, but it wouldn't be recognizable to an outside person, I just know her well.
The crate barking has vanished in new locations (for now!) and I hope it doesn't resurge.
The fear of the dremel returned after I was hasty and rushed and got her hair caught in it during a session. I had to re-condition it as a good thing and now we are back where we were.
Millie leads a pretty great life I would say. We have her, Lex and Lucy and they all take turns being demo dog. Lucy, being near 14, only goes on occasion. I would say Millie now is lead demo and decoy dog for my business.
She can sleep in her crate at night or at the foot of our bed without so much as a peep! We have an easy morning routine with all the dogs: hello greetings, potty outside and outside time till I let them in, self-play and then I am usually off to work OR I go back to bed after the kids leave (they leave very early to get to school) and the dogs cuddle with me.
The days Millie stays home, she crates herself and I leave it unlocked if the house is mostly picked up, or I lock it if things are everywhere. She had a knack of finding the kid's discarded food that they may have left out and not taken care of so I would rather crate her if I know there is stuff out she shouldn't have.
If she comes to work, she is always the best assistant with reactive dogs or puppies, obedience or agility demonstations. She never lets me down.
We can go on off leash hikes, she can be handled by any of my trainers for decoy work. She can go to relative's homes, go on vacations with us and be a pro on a lure coursing field or doing agility or she can be a chill dog just hanging out at home.
I will say, it is easy to think "wow, she is just a great dog," but then I look back and see I put in an enormous amount of effort for her to get to this point. It has taken literally a village to help Millie overcome things, L-theanine, time and a whole lot of work and relationship building.