Week 1 With Avery

AveryThe first week with Avery was spent learning about each other and adjusting to this new life.  It was eye opening and we definitely walked away from this experience learning a lot.

In the first week we learned that Avery was not:

  • Housebroken.
  • Crate trained.
  • Trained to walk on a leash.

I also discovered that he is on-leash-reactive towards other dogs.  Any and all dogs. He’s basically reactive to life in general when he’s on leash.

The rescue assured me that he was not dog aggressive and had no issues on leash.  Imagine my surprise when I tried to walk him for the first time only to discover that he wasn’t loose leash trained and was also reactive.

There are two dogs that we are backyard neighbors with and they showed some fence aggression behaviors when we first brought Avery home.  We had Avery on leash in the backyard and he was also reacting to the dogs.

Dread filled us almost instantly.  Were we also going to have to deal with fence fighting on top of all these other things?

Avery also has some separation anxiety issues that needed addressed as well.


I quickly started feeling overwhelmed and wondering if we got ourselves into a situation that we were not in any way prepared to handle.  Going through a rescue I assumed all of these situations would have been dealt with.

This is my fault and I fully recognize this.

I never should have assumed all rescues work the same way and I definitely should have asked more pointed questions about the dogs in their care.

By the end of the week I was a frazzled mess.  We hadn’t left the house at all because Avery would stress out.  We couldn’t take him on walks because of his reactivity issues nor could we let him run around in the backyard because of the neighbor dogs.

There were tears were shed and long discussions about all of this.  We were trying to figure out how we were going to handle it.

Thankfully we are not alone and we’ve got support.  I volunteer at a local shelter and decided to reach out to them for some resources and support.

This would prove to be the best decision we could have made.


  1. Because she’s a breeder, Sunshine has a great deal of information relating to training, etc. If you want some advice, I’m sure she’d be happy to provide it (even if sweet Avery isn’t a GSD.. haha) because in some areas, all dogs are the same. Let me know; my phone number is in my FB profile and you can call or text anytime.

    • Hi Shylah, Thanks so much! We are working with someone who’s helping us help Avery. However I’ll keep this in mind if in the future I need some more assistance! :)


  1. [...] done a lot of talking about all of Avery’s issues, it’s about time that I talk about all of his positive [...]

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