Maggie is at the age where she is discovering some independence and is beginning to pull on walks, but she picked up Heel and Let's Walk right off the bat during our Loose Leash Walking session. By the end she also began to respond to the Slow Down cue.
“Dogs possess a quality that's rare among humans--the ability to make you feel valued just by being you--and it was something of a miracle to me to be on the receiving end of all that acceptance. The dog didn't care what I looked like, or what I did for a living, or what a train wreck of a life I'd led before I got her, or what we did from day to day. She just wanted to be with me, and that awareness gave me a singular sensation of delight.”
- Caroline Knapp, Pack of Two: The Intricate Bond Between People and Dogs
We did more work on Come When Called and Leave It with Chula today. Chula is very play motivated when it comes to tennis balls. We used that to our advantage by using the balls as motivators and rewards. She did great and is making progress every week.
“My dogs have been the reason I have woken up every single day with a smile on my face. I am among the ranks of millions of people who appreciate the souls of dogs and know they are a gift of pure love and an example of all that is good.”
- Jennifer Skiff, The Divinity of Dogs: True Stories of Miracles Inspired by Man's Best Friend
Wait and Stay were on the agenda tonight for Maggie. She caught on to Wait pretty quickly. Stay also went very well and we were able to walk quite a distance away without her breaking position. We were even able to go out of sight for a moment and she did not move. Good job Maggie.
“When the man was disgraced and told to go away, he was allowed to ask all the animals whether any of them would come with him and share his fortunes and his life. There were only two who agreed to come entirely of their own accord, and they were the dog and the cat. And ever since then, those two have been jealous of each other, and each is for ever trying to make man choose which one he likes best. Every man prefers one or the other.”
- Richard Adams, The Plague Dogs
This week we taught Molly how to Leave It. We also worked on Stay, but Molly is a velcro dog that always follows her owner, so that may take some time to learn. Her owners also reported that she only had one accident in the house all week, so that is a big step in her potty training.
New puppy Maggie is a 3 month old Labradoodle. Her owners have done a great job with teaching her to Sit, and they reinforce it at meal time and to go out. Today we taught her Down and Leave It. Typical for her age, Maggie is a puppy biter so the Leave It will be a great tool to teach her not to bite.
As part of managing Chula's fear-induced aggression we worked on strengthening her Come When Called. To be able to call her away from whatever is stressing her is extremely important. Although she was very distracted working outside she did well.
Jeff Dentler, CPDT-KA, CTDI