Patty Ruzzo died of a stroke yesterday at the age of 56.
For those of you who didn't know Patty, she was a major part of the driving force behind food based training. She wasn't a mastermind in operant conditioning, but she had dog sense and she had compassion and her methods opened the eyes of thousands of obedience people, myself included, and dogs were being trained with much kinder methods because of her.
I had taken several workshops with Terri Arnold and others who were still rooted in force waaaaay back when, and when I saw Patty in action, it was a real turning point for me. At the time, I had a dog who was terrified of the dumbell because of the relentless ear pinching. She would freeze on the fast pace because of the repeated leash pops. I never regained her trust completely (nor should I have), but we learned to enjoy obedience and she began to blossom under Patty's methods. It was a real eye opener for me and my prong collars and ear pinches were permanently discarded and my dogs began working with me, not against me.
God speed Patty: you will be greatly missed.
To err is human:To forgive, canine."
I saw it listed on the NADOI group list. Sad loss for obedience.
UCDX GRCH Dunn's Marsh Caleb of Waltona UDX3, OM3, RAE Canadian UD, RE
FallRiver's Micah of Waltona GN RAE, Canadian CD, RN
I've read about Patty. It's a great loss.