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Testimonial 59 - Sigma

So much has changed in our dog Sigma in the months following our session with Mary. He has turned from fearful, aggressive, and unpredictable, to communicative, affectionate, and tolerant due to Mary’s insightful training regimen.

My partner and I adopted a 4-year old Wheaten Terrier via a rescue site – his previous family had to give him up after he bit their 8-year old child, and he would have been euthanized if a home wasn’t available very soon – and after the long, uneventful car ride home, we introduced him to the new home, and he seemed excited and happy, but somewhat anxious. We very quickly realized that the anxiety under the surface was much more serious than we perceived, and out of nowhere he bit my partner’s arm while she was petting him, drawing blood but not requiring stitches. No growl, no snap, no warning at all!

This seemed like the worst case scenario; my partner was terrified of him right from the start and we had to learn how to calm this unpredictable, potentially dangerous and violent dog in our home. It was then exasperated even more when, less than a week later, he bit my partner’s mother while she was visiting, which required stitches in two of her fingers.

A friend of ours recommended Mary after the success she had with her dog, so we scheduled an appointment as soon as possible. 

The experience was more insightful and illuminating about the behavior and temperament of Sigma then we could have hoped for! Mary watched him as he explored the room, followed her, and sat with me, asking us about aspects of his life related to the questionnaire we sent in prior to the appointment. Right away she could tell that he was extremely fearful, anxious, and aggressive, and pointed out his stalking behavior, the ways we were inadvertently encouraging him for aggressiveness through affection, and several other patterns we never would have realized on our own.

During the session we discussed and tried out many different training approaches, and Mary put together an elaborate list of the steps we needed to take going forward.

Within days we noticed our dog becoming more comfortable and asking for affection. We continued to follow-up with Mary via email, and she encouraged us and gave us tips for certain challenges we hadn’t thought of during the session. He is a completely different dog now: he communicates when he is scared or upset, he shows clear signs when he is comfortable enough to be touched, and there has not been a single biting incident since.

I cannot recommend Mary’s services highly enough; she gave us the tools and understanding we need to keep ourselves safe and our dog happy and healthy.

Jordan K. from Laurel, MD

Mary Huntsberry, MA

Associate Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist
Elite Fear Free Certified Professional
Montgomery County, MD

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