All About Roxie
We want to tell you all about Roxie, a HSP Alumni that is living her best life today and why positive reinforcement behavior training plays such an essential role in the care and rehabilitation of our rescues.
Roxie came to us in November 2020 as an owner surrender. She initially had some fearful behaviors towards people including barking, growling, retreating, and biting at the leash when people tried to leash her. Jennifer, our Behavior & Training Coordinator began a controlled training regimen to help her adjust to shelter life filled with active and loud kennels. Shelter life can be stressful sometimes!
Jenn began by sharing her office with Roxie to create a less stressful environment to help her get comfortable around new people. This allowed Roxie to take her time choosing when she wanted to approach and interact with staff and volunteers. We also used treat-tossing as positive reinforcement to reward her for remaining calm and relaxed while interacting with people. Gradually she became more comfortable and would come say hello to visitors and allow them to pet her. Once she was more relaxed with people, we used the same technique to help her to accept going into the leash, and that leashes weren’t so scary after all! With consistent and positive reinforcement training, Roxie became comfortable around new people and was then able to do meet-and-greets with potential adopters.
Though she still presented with barking towards dogs and people while on leash, her behavior was easy to manage and redirect. Finally, she was ready to find her forever home. When Kody (Roxie’s person) adopted her, we sent her home with a variety of training resources in case issues came up. As Roxie adjusted to her new home,Jenn continued to communicate with Kody, providing ongoing training techniques and advice. Recently, Kody sent us the message below, reaffirming that with time, patience, love, and positive training, a dog’s world can be forever changed.
“I hope you are doing well. Didn’t know if you guys did anything with updates of the pups you adopt out, but we could say Rox is definitely one of the happiest. I can’t thank you enough for introducing me to this kind, beautiful, cuddly soul. I wanted to send some photos so you guys could see the progress she has made and how much she loves “her” (my bed) new bed!!!– Kody
Continued support from HSP supporters like yourself, allow us to provide essential behavioral training to dogs like Roxie that otherwise might not get a second chance. If you would like to donate to continue helping dogs like Roxie, you can donate here.
For more information on our adoptable dogs: https://www.humanesocietyofpinellas.org/adopt