I am so happy to report that there has been a significant improvement in Chimera's dog reactivity since Clicker Expo. I'm guessing that it was a combination of tons of practice plus flooding that helped. Since then he's been better able to notice a dog without barking, and is quicker to calm down. That said, it only applies to the sight of the dog. He still reacts with the same intensity to hearing dogs barking or tags jangling.
I'm now more relaxed when we're walking and I'm enjoying our outings more. We've been going on leash walks in areas where I expect to see other people walking dogs.
Sandy Rogers told me that if you act like your dog is trained, he will behave like he is trained. If you act like your dog is untrained, he will behave that way. I needed to hear this - I needed to increase my expectations of Cai's various behaviors, including recall as well as various tricks.
Last Friday we went to an open house at The Rex Center in Pacifica. There were delicious cupcakes for the humans, and the dogs were welcome to try a free swim in their therapy/conditioning pool. I've always wanted a water dog and I've been encouraging Cai to play in water since he was a pup. He does like to play in shallow water, but he doesn't like swimming. Still, I couldn't resist sticking him in the pool. At the very least, it's good exercise and practice in case he ends up in deeper water than expected. He's a natural swimmer - he can even change direction easily. I cooed at him and took lots of pictures (coming soon) while he swam around with wide eyes and unhappy ears.