Do you know where Roley Dogs came from?

Aki 

You may know of the original Roley Dogs: Aki and Nami. Aki came to us at nine weeks of age. We started to play with him at home straight away. Aki loved playing with us and we loved playing with him. His training was always a fun game and he thrived. 

As Aki got older we needed to spend more time away from him so that we could work. He started to show some signs that he was missing our company. We fostered a few awesome Beagles for a local rescue. They were all awesome dogs and we nearly decided to keep Woody. 

When Woody left with his ideal forever family, Aki did not bounce back to his usual self. We were concerned and decided the next dog was here to stay. After a lot of searching I saw a female Beagle in need of a new home. She looked perfect so I contacted the owners straight away. It turned out they had had 100 enquiries in under an hour but somehow they liked the sound of us.


The Tsunami in our family

We met Nami at a dog park. Aki looked like he loved playing with her. Nami also seemed easy to connect with, healthy, happy and great with our kids. I thought I might finally have not only a great family pet, but also another dog that I could do agility with. 
When we picked Nami up she ran barking, from one end of her old home to the other, over all of the furniture. Yes over the lounges, dining chairs and table. I was rather surprised but the alarm bells failed to ring.

Wow! What a surprise when we got Nami home! She was an absolute nut case. She barked for four hours straight, her previous owners had exaggerated her life skills and some of the answers regarding Nami’s health and temperament were just plain incorrect. What had we done?

We named her Nami. Yes, at her worst she is called Tsunami.

We took Nami to see some of the awesome dog trainers in Perth, putting in hours of work to help her. Nami got walked as soon as it was light in the mornings to minimise the chance of meeting other dogs. We became very good at reading dog body language and at avoiding other people, dogs and anything that could possibly move. There had to be a better way.

Progress

One day, I found the Absolute Dogs Facebook page. It had some really cool dog training games that actually seemed to make a difference with Nami. I signed up to learn more, and more. I was seeing results and I was hooked. 

Nami has progressed to the point where she cam participate in group dog training classes. Together we have gained a trick dog title and competed in Agility. Nami has now retired from dog sports but is happily living her life as a pampered family pet. 

The birth of Roley Dogs

Since Nami first came to live with us, I have immersed myself in dog training. I have completed courses through many organisations, I have practiced and competed in dog sports, I have listened to hours upon hours of podcasts, I have taught dog training and even started my own dog training company. I have lived dog training for years now. 

I keep going back to and using the games that first gave me progress with Nami. I teach these games to people with new rescue dogs, people with puppies and people who want to do Hoopers, Agility or Nose-Work with their dogs. They work and they make training fun. 

The dog on the lead

There is usually a good reason for a dog being on lead. Please give all dogs on leash the space that they need.

You may know that one of my dogs spent some months doing rehab due to an injury. She still acts like a puppy and is a master at hiding any hint of being in pain or injured. She also loves to play with other dogs. To manage her injury, we needed to restrict her from playing, but also exercise her in a safe and controlled way. To ensure that she still had a great quality of life, her walks progressed from being in the house, to in the back yard, to out in public.

One of our greatest challenges was finding places where my dog could be exercised safely and without friendly dogs asking her to play.

Other dogs that I have worked with have initially been so eager to play with other dogs that they would pull their owners over. The owners spent their hard-earned money and time to teach their dog how to walk on a loose lead. They started by working in tightly controlled environments and then gradually work up to being able to walk on lead, at a great distance from other dogs. An off-leash dog, approaching these on lead dogs can undo all this work in a matter of seconds and put the training back by months.

So the next time that you see a dog on lead, please remember that they may have a good reason for being on lead. You can help them by ensuring that your dog is either put back on lead until they pass, or that you ensure that your dog gives them space.