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A Peaceful Walk with George: Navigating Dog Noise Sensitivity

A Peaceful Walk with George: Navigating Dog Noise Sensitivity George is here with me, enjoying a lovely walk by the tennis courts. Some people are playing tennis, and it's a beautiful day outside. George is happily snuffling around, exploring all the different smells. The reason we're here is to help him get accustomed to small sounds. Tennis rackets, balls, and people playing don't trigger him, but they do create background noise that he's learning to tolerate.

George isn't particularly interested in tennis balls, but this environment allows him to focus on other things, like sniffing around, while there's a minor level of noise. He's a bit sensitive to noise, especially cars and roads, so we're starting in a less intense setting. This way, he can associate the experience with something positive, like being outdoors and hearing people play tennis.

We're keeping our walk short and encouraging George to move around. He notices the sounds but isn't spooked or startled. Today, he's feeling quite good. Even when he hears a door creak, he looks but keeps moving with me. This practice helps us reconnect and navigate uncertainty together.

George has plenty of leash to explore safely in this pressure-free area. This approach isn't just for noise sensitivity but also for other triggers like dogs, cars, and people. In an environment like this, he can look around and make good choices. I have treats ready, though my hands are a bit full right now. Letting him do his thing, we take it easy and ensure he's comfortable.

This is our starting point. If he feels good here, it's a successful step. This area is safe and pressure-free, allowing him to be himself. There's plenty of space and time to make choices, setting a foundation for more challenging situations. If this level is difficult, we stay here longer or find something easier before moving on.

George is feeling fantastic today, taking in the sights and sounds without stress. After a few poops, he's even more relaxed. We're still near the tennis courts, where he can hear and see people without getting too close. This exposure is beneficial, allowing him to observe and acclimate to minor noises and distant cars.

As we near the cars, I'll pick him up to give him a break. He recognizes the route and knows we'll encounter cars soon. Seeing a squirrel or hearing kids, he might get a bit anxious. I keep the leash short and pick him up when we're too close to the cars. This gradual exposure helps him tackle these noises at his own pace.

We're nearing the cars now, and George is doing fine. He might pause, but that's okay. I don't want him to bolt, which would mean we've gone too far. Instead, he pauses and looks at me, signaling he needs help. I pick him up for the rest of the walk past the cars, ensuring he feels secure.

Once we're in a quieter area, I'll put him down again. He's walking quickly, wanting space from the cars, but he's not bolting. He checks back with me, showing he's managing his anxiety well. This is a good sign, indicating he's regulating himself and staying engaged.

As we move away from the noise, George becomes more relaxed and engaged. The further we get from the triggers, the better he feels. This practice helps us identify comfortable distances and gradually work our way up. Each step builds his confidence, making future walks more enjoyable for both of us.


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