Last night I came home from private practice only to find my grandmother’s antique bowl from Portugal in pieces all over my floor. I was devastated. I don’t know how I will tell my Mother. I have been using the silent treatment all along as discipline due to the fact that Murphy has been abused in his past life. So I never want to recreate any abusive environment for him. I have been using positive reinforcement only and it seems to be working. For all of his other naughty behaviors I have been using “planned ignoring”. Since he is such a pleaser at heart, this seems to really work, like with kids. Anyway, this time was somehow different. I actually told him he was a very bad dog, but only in a slightly raised tone. He started shaking and ran into my bedroom and onto his pad, where he didn’t move for the next two hours. I was gobsmacked about his retreat and actually found myself checking on him several times. When it came time for bed, he made no move to jump up on the bed with me. I looked at him and he actually looked very sad. As promised a clean slate was given and he was up in the bed in no time snuggling in for the night. Bad dog, no biscuit.
Today he was the perfect gentleman, all day. How long will that last?