Friday, 25 October 2013

Days 10 & 11

Day 10, yesterday, was a bust. Between work, a doctor's appointment and an evening class, there was no training done. I was a horrible, neglectful, awful dog owner! I tried to compensate with extra kisses and a shared evening snack of chips.

Today, I started teaching Bennett a front position. With Gio and Romeo, I absolutely adore how they work, and honestly don't regret any of the challenges we've had along the way. Taking into consideration my personal starting point  and what we have all worked through, I regret nothing and am absolutely thrilled with them. ... BUT ... if I got to choose one thing to "fix" about their obedience performance, for both dogs I would fix their "front"! It is my own darned fault that they have sloppy fronts. Too far away, crooked, inconsistent, and requiring entirely too much coaching on my part, even years into their obedience careers. I want to nip that right in the bud with Bennett, and am going to work on some SOLID position work with her right from the beginning. Her heel position is beyond what I could hope for at this point. She is fast, eager, and precise ... exactly what I want from her! I want that same level of enthusiasm AND precision with her front position.

I've brain-farted what I think could be a really cool idea for teaching a front. I've never done it before, and I haven't personally seen anyone do it, either. However, I make no claims of being "the first" to come up with what I think is a pretty cool idea. I'm sure someone out there has already done it and claimed it. But it's new for me, so YAY!

With that in mind, I'm making a video documenting each step along the way. ... And I'm going to keep it secret until we have something of a finished product. Muahahaha! I'm doing this for a couple reasons. 1) It might fail horribly, and I don't want proof out there on the eternal interwebs documenting my failure. 2) I know some people *ahem ahem* that will swipe in and end up finishing training it to their dogs before I can get it done with Bennett, and steal my thunder! 3) The video will be cooler if I can splice it all together with each step along the way.

So, bear with me. Long story short, Bennett remains super eager and enthusiastic about our new game. We had a couple hiccups as I tried to figure out what the hell it is I am doing. But an overall successful clicker session!

On a somewhat different, though still related, tangent ... I'm frequently getting whines and/or scratches at the patio doors for potty times now! We did have one accident during our training session tonight (eager puppy didn't want to tap out for a break, and silly me couldn't tell the difference between sniffing for crumbs and sniffing for a squat). But earlier this evening, there were 2 alerts to go outside! Hoorah! Progress!! ... Now, if only I could convince her to completely empty her bladder in one trip, instead of saving some for later. For a girly that can hold it all day while I am at work, I don't know why she feels the need to schedule pee times for every half hour in the evening!

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