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Sunday, December 9, 2012

A Success

As I've mentioned before, one of Shyla's biggest fears has been children. This was a big deal to us because we wanted her to be friends with our nephews. I've worked with my trainer and alone slowly exposing Shyla to kids from a distance. Yesterday, she spent an afternoon and evening with my nephews and their parents, and it went stunningly well.
Not only did she avoid cowering or acting scared but she seemed to really like them! She's come a million miles since I first met her. Look at her posture, tail position, and happy face in the photo below. A large part of yesterday's success is how incredibly well my nephews have acted around her, avoiding direct eye contact and letting Shyla take the lead in making friends.
You can see that it was snowing when they visited yesterday. This morning dawned white and freezing cold, even leaving frost on Shyla's whiskers.
Shyla and I wandered the meadows and forests, and I had the chance to play with a very fancy lens being loaned to me by a friend. I took the next photo of her frosty whiskers from a long distance away, using the powerful lens.
Fortunately, Shyla seems to adore winter. During her short periods of running, the "zoom factor" is even crazier in the snow than normally.
R, on the other hand, knows how to snuggle up and snooze after his run in this cold weather. His sleepy face and Shyla's wired face are quite a contrast!


  1. I'm sure in time Shyla and your nephews will become best friends.
    They'll have so much fun running around in the snow chasing each other before you know it
    the 8 weeks will pass in a flash.

  2. Good job Shyla. Kids are good they give us food
    Benny & Lily

  3. Oh very proud of you Miss Shyla. I do like kids, but they can be overwhelming at times even for me. At that point I just walk away. But you are doing just fine. Love the frost on you beautiful whiskers. And that photo of you are R really shows the contrast of black and white in your expressions.

  4. Two friends side by side, such different faces. Love the whiskers, will you buy the lens?? Top Dollars!!! I am sure. Lovely family photo, how special. Greetings from Jean

  5. You are so lucky to have such well behaved nephews that they follow your direction in working with Shyla. I love the contrast of the two in the last picture.


  6. Oh my, now that you show them together it is amazing the difference in their faces. R is so cool and relaxed and Shyla appears to be ready to take off with the simplest sign from you.

    Absolutely lovely photos today (as always.) The new lens is a must.

    And the kids, well, just an added bonus.

    Bert and My Vickie

  7. A huge congrats to you and Shyla!

  8. Ann...from..Outer Banks of NC....said ...I just love the expressions on R and Shyla's face...wonder what they truly are each thinking....and your nephews will bring so much fun for your duo...can't wait to see more of them.
    ....but for now one day at a time....Sending blessings ...from my heart to yours....HUGS

  9. So glad to see the continued progress Shyla is showing. She has real courage to overcome these fears. And kudos to your nephews!

  10. What a fantastic lens!! Very cool photo!
    Good job Shyla- on trusting those boys! Your so brave!
    I love the photos of R and Shyla..
    R wants to sleep!

  11.! that is the BEST news!!! yay for shyla!! and yay for your nephews! i know what a huge accomplishment that is because i saw how terribly afraid she was of all humans when you picked her up! you should be so proud of yourself for helping her get so far!!! and of course i am proud of miss shyla, too :)

    that last picture made me laugh so hard...R as the calm sleepy one? is that possible?

    but seriously-was that picture photoshopped? she looks like she's had three too many espresso shots :D


  12. OMG! I laughed at that last picture! R looks so laid back and Shyla, I hate to say this but she looks like Fred after a walk. LOL! It just seems to fire him up! Shyla is coming along beautifully with your nephews. It must make you happy to see such progress. Love the frosty whiskers! :)

  13. "Wired" sure does describe Shyla in that last picture!

  14. Kids CAN be skeerey cuz they all hyper and stuffs. Fortunately, I lives withs one...but, some of her furiends can be quite intolerable.
    Dat foto of Shyla and da nehew is STUNNIN'!
    Her looks like hers got into some kitteh ni in da last foto...hehehehe.


  15. wonderful that all went well with the young people! I LOVE the last picture of R and Shyla!! too funny!
    we actually got a little snow in madison yesterday..
    hope your week is a good one!

  16. R is now the calm one? =D

    I sure wish I could get Latte to the point you have Shyla. It's not even always children. Men can put her on alert and make her bark and get jittery. In general, if they just ignore her, she will eventually get curious and approach. If they ignore her then too, she will settle and allow petting. But I don't know if she'll ever get to the point that we don't have to go through these stages.

  17. are great to be around. Most of the time they drop a cookie or two, and if you're really fast........two for you and none for them! :)

  18. Good job Shyla! We hope that you continue on this pawsome path around children. That is such good news. And your nephew ~ Wow, is he ever handsome.

    You did fantastic KB shooting with that borrowed lens!

    And that last picture of R & Shyla, well we just want to hop in the middle and snuggle with them both!

    Lily Belle

  19. LOVE...the wired look at the familiar....your nephews are learning a very valuable tool thanks to you KB. How to train dogs and share the love! WTG>>>>>Shyla!

  20. Good work with the kids. Keep at it and they will be best buddies in no time.

  21. All that great training of the kids AND the pups made your visit such a success. Dogs know who is good to and for them. No surprise here that your nephews fit the bill.

    That last pic would so be Thunder and Lightning. Thunder, let me sleep. Lightning, what's next?

    Have a great week.

  22. That's quite an irony....A lab that's afraid of children. I am glad you have been able to ease Shyla's fears.

  23. We just adore your frosty whiskers, Shyla!

    Love ya lots,
    Mitch and Molly

  24. Way to go, Shyla! I think you got your hands on an awesome lens. That close-up of her whiskers from long distance is simply phenomenal.

  25. Great news ...she will be more and more confident with herself....ohh we have lots of snow now and more on the way.
    So its not possible to go out with the dogs for training/hunting

  26. We love the frosty whiskers! and the great nephew pics! And the duo!

  27. Glad to hear it's going well. Hope you're able to enjoy the cold that's finally arrived!

  28. Oh my goodness! congratulations! I can say from experience with Loki, exposure is key. he used to bark at EVERYTHING on hikes, from bikers to kids on tricycles to people rolling suitcases in the streets of downtown (post hike)... now he's just exposed. some kids (like Ludwig in one of my old Swiss posts) really like him, others prefer Juno. And that's ok! both my dogs are fine with kids either way, even if the kids don't like them.

    BTW: I had a "KB" moment on one of my forest hikes recently. Mentioned it in my post. heebie jeebies. got my bear spray ready for today's forest hike for sure!


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