i was at canadian tire today and dandy was soooooo perfect! i expected him to act out, since we've been away from home for nearly two weeks and he didn't get a lot of attention during that time (i was installing a hardwood floor and cleaning up a hoarding situation) but no - he was *amazing*. he was so good that i decided to treat him to a hot dog from the hot dog vendor outside the store. i even dropped his leash and let him drag it around, he was so good: eyes on me, sitting at my slightest thought (never actually had to say "sit", just thought how it would be nice if he'd sit right about now and he did). i never give treats "just because" so i was running him through his tricks and a lady said "i've been watching you with your dog when you were in the store - can i ask you a few questions?" we had a conversation covering dandy and how i trained him and what he was like when he was younger and where i learned about dogs and then she said "i have a situation with a bull mastiff. he's a *lovely* dog - i had him for two years and not one single problem - not one! but when my husband died, i had to give him to my daughter because i haven't been home enough to look after him properly and now things are going very wrong. can i get your number and then we can arrange for you to come out and have a look at the situation?" she told me the problems and i said just from what she's telling me and without having seen the dog for myself, it sounds like he's not getting enough exercise, the daughter doesn't trust him and may even be afraid of him, and his prey drive is rising (she never had a problem at all when he lived with her but the last time she visited her daughter, she took her purse off her shoulder and swung it over to the table and the dog bit right through it - i said nothing but my thinking is that the daughter might be hitting him with something like a belt or a leash). i reinforced to her that i haven't had any formal education in dog behaviour, that all i have is what i've learned on my own, and that she might be better to see a professional dog behaviourist but she said the one person they called said - without even going over there to see the dog, just from talking on the phone! - to put the dog down or at least keep him confined in a fenced-in run and away from people. she's going to get me the name of that person because i find that criminally irresponsible in someone who advertises themself as a trainer who "specializes in problem behaviour".