This morning was a very exciting morning at our house. Our 11.5 year old German Shepherd, Kira, became mysteriously paralyzed in all of her limbs in early December and this morning she was able to push herself up into a sit. This is huge progress from 5 weeks ago when she was not able to hold her head up unless we propped her up with several rolled up towels. We are making small steps toward our big goal of her walking again on her own.
Kira’s small step toward walking again made me think about the steps Gambit and I are taking with the car. Dog training, like a lot of things, is all about small steps. And it is so important to stop and celebrate along the way to the big goal.
Gambit has severe anxiety about the car. He’s thrown up multiple times and even with medication he has severe diarrhea after car rides. He doesn’t want to go anywhere near the car. I am trying to remember to take small steps with him and today we worked on just hanging out by the car and putting his front paws up for a few licks of peanut butter out of his Kong. And then we celebrated. Being willing to get in the car on his own is the goal. Our small step today was about first being able to be comfortable near the car. Like everyone else I would love to just pick him up and put him in the car and go. But if I bypass the little steps I may never reach my bigger goal.
I really didn’t want to be outside on this super cold morning working on this, but I promised myself a hot chocolate as soon as we went inside. So while I drank my hot chocolate, Gambit finished the rest of his Kong inside and I watched Kira resting in the other room. And I feel good. Small steps towards our goals.