Today, Daisy is the most polite and cooperative dog I’ve ever had. She is so nice that people have forgotten what a hot mess she was when I got her. She had been starved and ignored, accustomed to scavenging for food, she was covered in chicken poop and so thin the vertebra down her back clearly visible. She was scared of everything, her tail tucked so tight under her body the first thing I ever asked about her was “does she have a tail?”. I got her at 6 months old, but she had not even been given a name and had zero socialization. My first goal was to socialize her but my solo attempts were a disaster: she would allow people to ‘pet her once’ but would growl and nip when people tried to ‘double dip’ and pet her a second time. It was embarrassing and frightening to witness. I immediately signed up with A+ lifetime training knowing this was going to be long haul in overcoming her bad start in life. Tom was amazing, working with us in a wide variety of public places (even negotiating to allow her to go through the revolving doors to a restaurant) so we could socialize her under every possible circumstance. He taught me how to control her environment so she still felt secure while we worked through every exercise. We have taken her through all the A+ classes and make a point to refresh her training every year with at least one class a summer. She now responds to both voice and hand commands and she just took the canine good citizen test and passed on her first try. Whenever I remind people about the ‘you can only pet me once’ story my friends and family laugh and all say, “I’d forgotten about that!” as they laugh and pet her multiple times as she smiles up at them trusting that she is safe and loved. Which is actually the best end to the story we could ask for. Thanks Tom and Gigi!