My new canvas arrived on Friday afternoon. It is a beautiful 20x40 image of the Oregon Coast. It came in cardboard, wrapped very well to protect the art. I hauled the box into the kitchen and began to cut it away, revealing the contents. Nice. I love it. Box open, artwork upstairs safely put away until it went on the wall. Done with that I went downstairs and found Elsa stuck in the kitchen. She was stuck behind the box. The photo above shows the box flattened down; but she was stuck behind one flap that had remained up and was imposing enough not to cross.
So, of course it was time to work with the box monster. Once I flattened the box down, Elsa still wasn't thrilled about walking over it. I went to the treat cupboard, grabbed a handful and head back to the box. I stood in the middle of the box and called her to me, like the box was not there. Very hesitantly she came and got her treat. Then we walked back and forth, back and forth over the box like it didn't exist. That is the key to desensitizing; not making a big deal over it.
I left the box there for several hours and made the only exit to outside that was available to Elsa, the door on the other side of the box. Our lives are filled with obstacles, for us and our dogs. How we learn to maneuver these road blocks in life depends greatly on past experience. The more we introduce our dogs to, the easier life gets. That said, introductions must be done in a certain manner and too much of a good thing is not always a good thing.
Small, calm and relaxed introductions are always the best. Our dogs watch us and follow our example. "Oh, a box in the kitchen?" No big deal, we don't care about these boxes. Keeping a "chill" demeanor for our dogs most definitely teaches us not to sweat the small things in life. :)