As many of you know, the beginning of my year started off with a new addition to my family – a two month old Goldendoodle puppy named George. I fell in love with George the second I saw him, and knew that I had to have him.
I brought George home to Beverly Hills with me, not fully understanding the full responsibility I had just taken on. Sure, I grew up with dogs, but I never had one of my own, on my own. I always heard that having a puppy is like having a baby, but I would think to myself, “How hard can it really be?”
I was quickly thrown into puppy-motherhood and realized in a short amount of time that having a dog is probably just as much work, if not more, than having a human child. Dogs require a ton of care, attention, and most importantly, training.
I took it upon myself to be a responsible dog owner with George, making sure that he had everything he needed to live a comfortable, happy, and fulfilled life. I read up on dog training, health, and safety, I took him to daycare to be socialized, and made sure he got enough daily exercise (Goldendoodles have a lot of energy!)
I was able to teach George the important basics on my own, such as potty training and basic manners, but I found myself stuck on the crucial elements of training, such as not jumping up on people, not making the furniture his own, and not pulling the leash (which looked more like him pulling me down the street at times.)
Don’t get me wrong, George is sweet as can be and smart as a whip (after all, he does have Poodle in him) but I was not able to do it all on my own. As much as I wanted to think I could watch hours of dog training tutorials on YouTube, I was in over my head, stuck, and ultimately frustrated.
After 8 months of trying to train George to be a gentleman in all settings, I came to terms with the fact that I was not equipped with the tools I needed to succeed. I found myself realizing I needed professional help.
I had heard many great things about a regarded dog trainer in Los Angeles named Jeff, from Smart Dogs Training. I gave Jeff a call and asked him if the three of us could meet, immediately. Jeff could tell I was stuck.
I was so impressed with Jeff from the moment I met him. We met early in the morning at a park in Sherman Oaks. Hot coffee in hand, I took George out of the car, and he began to pull me across the park, jumping up on other people to say hello, and ultimately spilling my coffee down my shirt. Jeff took George from me and immediately commanded him. It was like George knew who was in charge without Jeff even saying a word.
Long story short, I decided that Jeff was the best person possible to train George. We decided that the most effective form of training would be boarding, which meant that I had to sacrifice George’s kisses and cuddles for an entire month (but I knew it was going to be worth it in the end.)
When dropping George off with Smart Dogs Training a few days later, Jeff looked at me and said, “God willing, you will have 12-14 years of kisses and hugs from this guy. You will be thankful you spared a month away from him to make sure he is a gentleman from here on out.”
We are currently one week into training and I can already tell the difference in George. We met at the same park we initially met at seven days after dropping him off, and I could tell he had already grown up. In a week’s time, Jeff had taught George how to properly walk on the leash, sit, and stay.
I cannot wait to see his progress, and bring home a brand new, well-behaved Goldendoodle gentleman.