Page 18 - Chiron Spring/Summer 2023
P. 18

 Military Animal Rehoming Centre
by LCpl Hempstock
At the rehome section (MARC) we get many dogs from different backgrounds, issues & breeds.
Whilst many dogs are easy to rehome, some require further training to make them more suitable and for this piece I will talk about a Spaniel name Toddz.
Toddz came up to us in February 2022, when he didn’t meet the standards of efficiency as a search dog, he refused to walk or work
due to behavioural issues. Toddz refused to walk on the lead, and he would lay down and stop, essentially protesting until the handler / Kennel Assistant let him loose. We needed to understand why he was doing this and how to implement training so that he could have the proper exercise. We tried to find out why he was doing this behaviour,
we thought it could have been stress, agoraphobia or stereotypic behaviour.
We used treats and positive encouragement to try and rectify this behaviour however we achieved inconsistent results. This was frustrating because we were trying to take him and expose him to new and positive places. However, this
did help us understand more what kind of home he required due to his issues, as not everyone has access to areas he could run free.
Toddz did receive some interest from potential owners which reached the stage of home visits. Unfortunately these proved unsuccessful as Toddz over- enthusiastic ‘searching’ of the house concerned potential owners, however we
However, when a fellow DATR employee enquired about him on his morning walk and understood his problems, we decided to do little and often, allowing Toddz to stay in his office with and home visits to allow a more realistic view of Toddz behaviours. Over time we extended Toddz visits to weekends and longer home trials where
they accommodated his quirks
  understood this behaviour could be rectified over time.
“A great reminder that if people understand and show empathy, even quirky, challenging dogs can get a great home”
and habits and really enjoyed his affection. Toddz spent Christmas with his potential new family whilst they helped learn and understand him further. We are pleased to
 This was
for us as Toddz is
a great dog who
loves the company
of others whether
that be people or running with other dogs. He especially loves indoors with a sofa where he is a little over loving! At this point Toddz had 7 people come to see him as a new owner with no success.
say Toddz is now a happy member of their family
and a great reminder that if people understand and show empathy, even quirky, challenging dogs can get a great home.
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