Alpha Boarding School for Dogs Testimonials - Sarah, David and Megan
18th May 2005
Dear Greg and all your wonderful staff,
When we bought our Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier we wanted a dog that was a bit more manly, butch, and an all round family dog. We had previously had two west highland terrier bitches who were an absolute delight and no trouble at all. We bought our dog home and started a puppy class. We knew straight away that Digby was different! Then after a year we upped and moved to Australia from the UK, poor Digby had vet visit after vet visit, then 30 days in quarantine, followed by being desexed. Then he had a quiet time for a few months and then in January of this year, whilst walking him back from the lake, crossing over Scoresby Road to our home, he got frightened by the backfiring of a car and pulled himself out of his collar, and backed into an oncoming car. More vet visits, amputation of a toe, but very luckily no internal injuries!! Hey presto we have a 22 month old dog who has been through an awful lot in his life.
Added to this, Digby has always been a little bugger!! Even with the puppy classes in the UK, he has always been difficult. A family walk with our 6 year old daughter Megan, would turn into a nightmare, where Digby would pull on his lead like a mad thing, jump up at other walkers and cyclists but would be very friendly towards other dogs and would always want to stop and say hello. He is a very affectionate dog and wants everyone to make a fuss. Being a bigger dog its been hard to stop the jumping up, especially at visitors to our home, Digby is relegated to outside during such times.
Digby has always had a tendency to steal anything lying around, although he has never chewed furniture, door frames or such, but has always stolen any toys left lying around and has also been known to jump at the washing line and steal undies and run around the garden with them! Funny the first time, but when he creates holes with his teeth, not so funny!! Megan has learnt that her bedroom door is always kept shut and not to leave anything lying around or it will be taken and chewed - Digs has demolished several pencils, pens, Barbie clothes etc.
Unfortunately, Digby has more or less had the run of the house, slept on the sofas, armchairs and even the spare bed. Since being in Australia, he has taken the liberty of sleeping in our bedroom at nights, we tried shutting him out and he would just cry at the door so you wouldn't get any sleep, you would let him in and hey presto half an hour later who would have jumped on the bed and settled himself down for the night - Digby!!!
Now you might read this and say well that's all down to the training by the owners - yes we quite agree, we have had one untrained and uncontrollable dog - but we love Digby dearly and although thoughts would often go through our mind to get rid of him, we could never have followed it through.
The last straw was the car accident and all the trips to the vets, whereby Digby would (although with his right back leg strapped up) throw himself on the floor and create merry hell!!! Stud Park Vets were quite used to this show of stubbornness, anxiety and panic, just sheer devilment ??? Who knows with Digby, but upon asking the Vets what could we do with Digby, they gave us a leaflet on Alpha Dog Training, being very sceptical at first, we spoke to Greg on the phone and he reassured us that being a young dog, he could do something with Digby.
My main problem was that since the accident, I couldn't walk him as I was petrified that he would slip his collar again. He had never attempted to slip his collar before that day, but since had developed a Houdini touch and had learnt that if he backed away from you he could wriggle his head up and out of his collar!!! Even the Vets had seen him do it and couldn't work out how or why!!!
We sent Digby to Greg on the Thursday before Easter saying to ourselves that Greg wouldn't be able to do a thing with him, he was a one of a kind dog and we would just have to accept that and he would have to just play in the garden.
WOW when Greg brought Digby back after 16 days of training it was a completely well behaved, well mannered and obedient Digby that was returned to us. Since Friday April 8th we have spent lots of time with Digby enforcing and maintaining the training.
He now sleeps on the decking at night and is outside whilst we are out. He comes in of an afternoon and evening but only upon invitation. Whilst he has the occasional lapse whereby he is told NO and circled and then praised when being good again, once being circled Digby realises he has done wrong and just goes and lies down.
He is still full of life and has still got some mischievous ways. A family walk is now an absolute delight whereby David, myself and Megan all walk him to heel and he is fantastic on the halti. When we have visitors he doesn't jump up but sits and wags his tail waiting to be stroked and made a fuss of.
We would like to thank you Greg and all your staff for all the time and dedication that you have put into training Digby and us upon his return. We are extremely grateful and in awe of the brilliance and simplicity of the training.
With many, many thanks for teaching us all how much fun and enjoyment we can all gain from being owned by a lovely Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier.
Digby Smythe and family of David, Sarah & Megan
29 May 2005
To Greg & Amy,
Hopefully you will have had the new addition to your family by now and many congratulations.
You will be pleased to hear that Digby is still doing well, still sleeping outside and although he lapses occasionally, he knows immediately when he has!!
I have booked myself in on your talk at Stud Park vets for the 12th July, and speaking of vets, you would have been most proud of Digby when we took him to the vets on Saturday morning last, to have his C5 vaccination and his heartworm injection - David said he was extremely well behaved, cried when the injection went in, but was very good in the waiting room before and afterwards!! I met him there after dropping Meg off at dancing although I stood my distance and spied on him through the window first - I was speechless at his behaviour!!!
He is a completely different dog since he knows who is boss-and that it's not him. Can I please book Digby in for boarding kennels with training from the 6th Sept till 26th Sept - if you can let us know whether its easier for us to drop him off or for you to pick him up.
Well will end now as time to walk Digs, he was as good as gold when he went to the dog groomer too - she commented on his good behaviour and said how happy he appeared!! (previously he was a bugger)
Thank you so much again for all that you have done for him - only wished we'd have done it months ago!!
Sarah, David, Megan and of course woofs from Digby