Phoebe’s 121 Weekend Training
Phoebe, my husband and I did a weekend of dog training at Devon Dogs together. My husband and I are both in our fifties, working and living in Somerset. We’ve both had dogs all our of our lives, of various different breeds. 4 years ago we acquired an older Greyhound called Pedro who needed a home and fell in love with the breed. Then in August 2018 we adopted Phoebe, a Saluki cross Whippet, from a local small rescue place as a companion for Pedro. She was estimated to be around 4 years old and was very timid to start with.
Over time, Phoebe came out of her shell, but we still struggled with her strong chasing instinct and the fear-aggression when on lead. Inspired by the revolutionary training methods of the Sexier than a Squirrel Challenge, we enrolled for a weekend of 121 dog training at Bowerland.
We arrived on a Friday evening and stayed in the Annexe for 2 nights. Unfortunately the weather (with heavy rains) was dreadful all weekend so it was not inviting for exploring the beautiful countryside. We did, however, go for a wet walk around Meldon Reservoir, which is just a 10 minute drive from Bowerland. Dartmoor is definitely worth exploring, but be aware that there are sheep and cattle, so dogs need to STRICTLY be on a lead at all times.
Saturday morning at 10 am we had our first session with trainer Michelle lasting 2.5 hours. The session included theory in an open room attached to the arena and practical work with Phoebe outdoors at the adjacent fields. Unfortunately we could not use the indoor arena on Saturday as there was an agility course going on.
After a 30 minute lunch break we had another 2.5 hour session with Tracey in the afternoon. Both trainers were excellent and it was nice to have two different trainers. Saturday evening we ate at the White Hart Inn at Bridestowe, a dog friendly pub around 7 minutes drive. Nice food and landlord.
On Sunday we had morning and afternoon sessions with Michelle. In the afternoon we used the arena, and Phoebe practiced on an obstacle course. It was great to see how much confidence she has gained in these 2 days. We definitely recommend the course and will also come back ourselves to do the monthly sessions whenever we can.