When we told our kids we were going to go see sled dogs Naomi was both excited and very nervous. She had a scary experience with a dog and she wasn’t sure she wanted to be anywhere near these big dogs. When we got to the siberian husky farm, Naomi got out of the van, and asked me shyly if she could stay by me the whole time. I reassured her she could stay as far away or get as close to the dogs as she felt comfortable. Cassandra, the owner and trainer of the dogs, gave us an overview of the property, the dogs, and their shelter before we got anywhere near the dogs. This gave Naomi time to take in her surroundings and check out the dogs from far away.
Before we walked over to meet the dogs Cassandra brought out a kick sled (A smaller version of a big dog sled) and allowed all of the kids to play around on it. We are now pretty sure we need to get a kick sled! It’s awesome, even without dogs to pull it!
When we were ready to go meet the dogs, Cassandra had us meet Moto, her lead sled dog. Naomi stayed back by me, while Mark and the other kids went up to pet him. After seeing that Moto would not jump up on her she walked slowly up to him, began to petting him, and soon was hugging him! Next we went to meet Moto’s son. Again Cassandra went up to him first and calmed him down. Again Naomi hung back a little and waited to see how he would react to all the kids. He was definitely excited but was a very well behaved boy! Again, Naomi walked up to him slowly and began petting him, it was amazing! We could literally see her body and mind relax with each dog she petted.
We soon moved to Cassandra’s other Siberians and with each dog Naomi continued to gain more and more confidence. It was truly awesome for Naomi to see so many different dogs be playful, excited, but well mannered and lovable.
Playing around on the kick sled gave Naomi confidence when it came time for Little Musher lessons. Yes, you read correctly, Cassandra gave our kids a mini mush lesson and they got to have Moto pull them on the kick sled!
Not long into our trip out to Pine Ridge Siberians Naomi was comfortable enough to walk up to Moto, MJ, and Demon all on her own and love on them. She is still cautious and understandable respectful around dogs, but no longer afraid. Cassandra and her amazing, well trained, lovable dogs has helped to heal Naomi’s previous bad experience and has replaced it with a love of huskies! Guess which kind of dog she wants us to own!