She is a little bit better about cars. Not every car causes a sharp tail tuck and a picked up pace. If the car drives by slowly, giving us a wide berth, as some considerate drivers will do, Bella seems fine. The big vehicles, the noisy ones, and the fast ones make her nervous, but usually she recovers quickly. If not, she will turn and lead us to the safety of home. Bella Is frightened by people, and especially by people with dogs. She is also concerned about dogs without people-the neighbor's Rottweiler in the electric fence who charges at her barking, and the unseen barker a few houses down who seems pretty assertive when seen. I don't think she would be frightened of a mild mannered dog in an off leash setting.
Bella is beginning to express her opinion. I usually lift her tail as she pees to avoid it getting wet. She has decided she doesn't like this and moves her rump aside when she pees, inconveniently placing her tail just out of reach. (This conversation between us isn't concluded yet. I don't want her to pee on her tail!) She has also indicated some reluctance to be petted on the porch. I usually haven't been petting Bella since the trainer has suggested that I wait for her to approach me. The exception to this is when we arrive at my porch after our walk. I'll pet her just a bit under the chin as a sort of test. Bella has indicated this is not ok by not stepping all the way onto the porch when we come home. I've stopped, and now she is back to standing patiently on the porch as I deal with the poop bag or wipe her feet. For some reason, she accepts the foot wiping process. She is less keen on the butt wiping process when it is necessary, but cooperates. She has the habit of beginning to walk before she has finished her toilet business, making the indignity of a butt wipe mandatory. Galen, one of the Bernese Mountain Dog Rescue gals, remarked that dogs can be like little children with food on their face and hands-they don't mind at all! Bella may well have been accustomed to defiling herself in her cage, and may be eager to keep walking if she feels vulnerable doing her business.