Your email is so humorous, partly because you are more correct than you likely know. Ari is almost two different dogs on and off the leash. There are still areas requiring further work when she’s off leash, but her on-leash behavior is quite impressive. We have been doing training exercises for a few weeks by literally running errands, and you’d be proud of her. Ari is facing scary things like busy roads, and she clearly draws comfort from being leashed. She frankly holds position besides the wheelchair as well as Lilly ever has, and Ari’s behavior inside stores has been fine.
The nature of my disability is such that I have to leave prong collars on both of my dogs so there are the “live rings” for me to attach leashes to with snaphooks. Unfortunately, Ari popped her live ring off in a first-week mishap that was completely understandable (she very quickly learned to never let obstacles separate her from the chair), and of course the “dead ring“ is much harder for me to access. I do have a new prong collar for Ari, but I haven’t found someone to fit it on her. Anyway, you can see why Ari needs to happily come up to the wheelchair and let me hold her collar, that’s the only way I can snap on a leash.
From: FunkenSpiel [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Wednesday, June 01, 2011 01:59
Subject: Re: Ari
If I can help you with my expiriance, I will say that she is safe while is on a leash – the leash gives her security.
This means she is not yet gained full confidence in you. She is young and needs a little more time. I suggest that you leave the collar on her neck for some time and when not on a leash. Some coaches use a regularthin rubber band so that the dog has the impressionthat it is constantly on a leash until they gain security.