Nola the Belgian Malinois from Tampa, FL
We wanted to highlight one of our previous Full Service graduates. Nola is a young Belgian Malinois who came for training because she was a bit too much of a handful for her owners. She pulled on the leash, barked all the time, and got very mouthy when playing with toys. These are all common issues that find with clients who get this breed. They are high energy, high drive, and need to have a job.
Part one of our training process was showing Nola right versus wrong. We cannot correct bad behavior without giving her alternate things to try. We showed her all of her obedience commands, taught her how to follow our leadership, and taught her a communication system. We channeled her drives for toys and food into her training, and her high motivation made her a receptive student.
Part two was proofing all of these behaviors that we had taught her, and making sure she could do them no matter what was going on around her. Dog distractions were very difficult for her as she was very pushy and controlling around dogs when she first came. This is a trait that is very common with the Belgian Malinois, and they tend to have strong personalities. She also had to work through distractions that sparked her prey drive, such as birds, squirrels, and people moving fast on bicycles and roller skates.
Part three was introducing Nola back to her owners and showing them how to handle her. The transition lessons are one of the most essential parts of our program, because it does no good for us if the dog only listens to their trainer and not to their owner. We spent several hours with Nola’s owners before they took her back to their home in Tampa, FL. Now she is able to go out and about with them and be on her best behavior.
The Belgian Malinois breed is one that is very near and dear to out hearts here, and we love to see them thrive with committed owners. Nola’s parents did the right thing by sending her to training so that they could fulfill her as a working dog. We cannot wait to see how she continues to thrive at home.