My pal Charlie goes home tomorrow and I am so pleased with how far he has come. He is still very puppy and very Charlie but his vocabulary has grown and he is responsive and happy about commands. His owner is committed to obedience being Charlie’s way of life and so I am confident that, with very little effort, Charlie will mature to an absolutely stellar adult dog. His owner has high expectations and that is exactly what this smart boy needs. Training him has been a pleasure and I look forward to watching his progress in his follow ups.
We are cruising right along with Charlie. He has had a couple days of workouts without any leash or tether at all and done beautifully. As expected for a dog his age and caliber he is easily distracted but just a verbal “No” gets him right back on track.
He did well on Placemat and Down Stay today during the kids’ lunch time and he did a great job on our long walk today. He also is learning to leave the chickens alone even though I am not holding him back.
Really Charlie is a super star and he is exactly where I would expect him to be considering his breed and work ethic. He is one happy guy and he loves to work (and play!).
We are entering Proofing Mode which is where we simply heap on the distractions. I am going to try to carve out time to take him down town for some practice but because my son was sick yesterday and today (thus not at school) it took quite a chunk out of my child-free time where I could have gotten that done. But I’m gonna try to make that happen. For now he is playing with his buffalo horn when he should be sleeping. Such a toddler.
Two things Charlie loves: snow and running. His remote collar has lead to a TON of joyfilled spring sessions in the fresh snow. He is such a cutie when he has his beard all frosty.
Charlie has adapted really nicely to his remote and we are going to start pushing his off-leash obedience a little harder this week. His biggest hurdle is his distractibility but much of that has to do with maturity. Luckily his owner has very high expectations and Charlie has never met a challenge he couldn’t conquer.
Now to just teach him to sit still for drying off without it becoming an absolute party.
Taco went home today after a very chilly go-home lesson with his folks. The snow sure put a damper on his work ethic but he still does his commands if you make it clear he has no other options. He is a sweet boy and he wants to get the answer right but sometimes he avoids work if he thinks he can get away with it. Luckily he is a love sponge and wants praise. Since we raised the value of physical praise and introduced more discipline to his routine he should be quicker to listen instead of continue playing. I’ll miss Taco but I look forward to our follow-ups!
Okay 3rd Times the charm. My internet has been pooey all day today and my first couple attempts at the blogs tonight have been lost to the wasteland.
Sweet little Taco is working so hard. He has been introduced to all of his commands and he is pretty responsive but still needs little reminder corrections now and then. Easily startled he loses focus of something spooks him but it’s easy to get it back.
What he is toiling with the most right now (this won’t surprise his people) is anything that involves him holding still for an extended period of time. He did Placemat today for an hour and needed a reminder probably every 15 minutes or so (not bad) while I was seated at my desk. But if the other dogs were up or if I moved around too much he forgot his job and would leave his mat.
His leash manners have improved very well and his Come command (on-leash) is going great. We will spend time tomorrow building up his confidence and his responsiveness to his stationary commands and see if we can get some better staying power for him. But like most dogs this will get better the more it’s asked of him so if his people ask him to go to his mat or to hold a Down/Stay it will become second nature.
He is a soft heart and once he finds out the avenue to praise you can see it sort of click for him. That praise/discipline balance is important!
Charlie had a terrific day. He thinks it was all about running and bounding and pouncing but it was really all about the off-leash come command. He has adapted to his remote collar really nicely and he is enjoying the freedom it gives him. I spent most of our work today letting him play and get distracted and then calling him back to me for some praise and letting him go again.
He also did Placemat for an hour today and was a real trooper about it. I’m very pleased with how today went. Tomorrow we will start his more difficult obedience without a leash on.
Sweet Taco is coming out of his shell! I finally heard him bark today which was a first. I understand that at home Taco likes to bark when he is happy, sad, hungry, angry, frustrated, or itchy but he has been silent and polite so far. Ace is still his favorite playmate but in the house and in the yard Taco has been a very polite houseguest. I suspect a lot of it is an act because he is still sorta shy here.
His training is coming along well although he is a little nervous to lay down when other dogs or children are around. He is walking politely on a leash and his stationary commands are going just fine. His Implied Stay is pretty good unless he anticipates a Come command. He will jump the gun a little. I didn't get a chance to do Placemat yet because my evening got hectic but tomorrow I have nothing planned after dinner but to put everyone on their mats and practice sitting still.
More than anything it seems that Taco needs experience behaving even when there are distractions around so I hope to start adding more distractions here pretty quickly. For now he is snoozing in his kennel after his long day.
This little chaos factory is doing really well. We are on track to introduce him to his remote collar tomorrow and his basics are all introduced now. I even had a little fun with him and introduced some motion commands just to challenge him and once again he wasn't taxed at all by what I was asking him to do.
Motion commands are pretty much what it sounds like. I give him a command that he must perform while I stay in motion. So I will be walking and while I continue walking I tell him to lay down. He must stop heeling me and lay down even though I never stopped moving. It's more difficult than it sounds for many dogs to get right away but he picked it up in two tries.
My evening got busier than I expected it to with my kiddos so I didn't get to practice Place with him tonight but tomorrow should be perfect for that and so we will test his ability to sit still for a while. I have a feeling that will be his biggest challenge. Though he has been introduced to Placemat before when he boarded with me and he made it look easy...I am enjoying finding ways to challenge this pup.
Sweet natured and very outspoken Taco is here for one week of basic obedience training. He is a sweet, young, dog who is a bit shy in new situations and can get a little growly when he is nervous. But we don't hold that against him; in fact we will thank him for telling us he is uncomfortable! It took Taco a little while today to decide we could be buddies but now that he is accepting praise from me he is working well. We started with Heel/Autosit, Implied Stay and Come. He did well unless something startled him. The Implied Stay is a little big difficult still but it's only day 1 and he is used to following (or leading) people when wearing a leash. But he let me put him into a Sit and then walk in a half circle around him today and then do a Come command so for his first day he did great! We eventually want to be able to go in a full circle with him sitting still.
Taco has made good friends with Ace and he doesn't mind Dana but she is so large he seems a little weary of playing with her (she plays with her ENTIRE body and as someone who has seen 95lbs of floofy enthusiasm come at me I can't blame him for noping out of the game). He likes her a lot more when she is calm and in the house.
Unlike his kennel neighbor, Charlie, Taco is easily offended by corrections. Not so much scared as unimpressed by them if there is something around him he wants to be nervous about. I've found that correcting him more lightly two or three times in a row gets his attention back more gently (doesn't scare him) than a single big leash pop. So while he is still learning the right answers we are pulsing his corrections instead of giving him big ones. Once he gets the way things work around here we might adjust our corrections to suit his confidence level.
Tomorrow we are working on more of the same and adding Down to the list. I want to see how far he gets and if he is doing well we'll add one or two more things to his repertoire. It all depends on how he feels. We def don't want to burn a dog out especially if they are only just getting comfortable with accepting my touch as praise. But I can tell he and I are already becoming buddies so it shouldn't stay slow for long. Come back tomorrow to hear more about how this sweet fellow is doing.
Charlie is the physical embodiment of Energy. A healthy, young, schnauzer who is here for two weeks of advanced obedience training is just what the doctor ordered for this youngster. He NEEDS a job. He is such a busy guy with a big job coming up of being the office greeter at his dad's work and also potentially as a therapy dog. But first this fellow needs some self restraint and manners to get him off on the right foot.
Today we started with refreshing his Heel command and his Autosit along with his Implied Stay and Come commands. He already has a fairly decent vocabulary so I hope to introduce him to his remote a little earlier than most but it's all up to him and how well he takes to it. If he needs a slower intro that's what we will do. But Charlie is such a "LET'S GO!" personality I think he will throw his weight into the work and really enjoy it. He's a total love sponge and so praising him and motivating him is easy peasy and he takes nothing personally so correcting him isn't scary for him or confusing.
I'm looking forward to watching this guy grow as he learns over the next two weeks. For now he is just celebrating by harassing Ace and Dana whenever he gets the chance. Luckily they are both good sports about his playfulness.
Tomorrow we are moving ahead with his obedience with Down and Placemat as well as doing the Come command from a long line if I have time. Look to tomorrow for another update on Charlie!