Sunday, June 7, 2009

Sunday Training Time

Today Steeler and I went to a "training party" organized by Karen. We all had obedience run thru's and worked on whatever else we wanted with our friends. Steeler was just AWESOME today! First - he took a little short walk with Winnie - the malamute puppy that is now bigger than he is and I think he has decided that she is ok. We might try a walk in the woods at some point this summer. Second - he was SUPER hanging out with dogs going past him and he felt comfortable enough to just lie down and hang out. Third we did some work with a Collie puppy - I don't remember how old she is now - maybe 7 or 8 months? And the two of them went nose to nose at one point, kind of by accident - and Steeler has decided that she is ok too! He had no reaction when I called him away. We worked on Stays as well and we did a bunch of short ones where I actually took the leash off for a change and went all the way across the ring! And to top that all off - his novice run thru was spectacular! His heeling was awesome, his recall was great even if his front was just a little bit crooked. His stand for exam was pretty good too, just a little bit of minor shifting of the feet when Karen walked in to do the exam. He LOVES his auntie Karen - so to stand still while she comes in is really hard for him.

After that we stopped at Ann's house to do some more training. Ann and I have made a pact to try to get together more often to actually do more training stuff with our dogs. Some friends of hers with a little white dog named Harry also came down to add another dog to the mix. While we were waiting for Harry, we started with just Brandy and Steeler hanging out - they are both a lot alike - this is BORING when are we going to MOVE! When Harry arrived, we took the dogs down the street to an area that I think links up with the Blue Hills Reservation(?). At any rate - we took the dogs for a walk through the woods where Steeler and Brandy went nose to nose sniffing the same spot a couple of times with no reaction from either of them. We saw some horses as well. When we got to a wide open spot where we could see for quite a ways we worked on taking the leash on and off with Steeler. It seems I have done a spectacular job of pairing the leash going on, the appearance of other dogs, and mom getting nervous to result in Steeler doing a cujo impersonation. So we are going to try to uncouple that by working with dogs I know first! Instead of trying to jump straight to strange dogs. At least it isn't just putting the leash back on that causes this reaction, so we have a place to start! And I know he can do this - because we can walk all around the agility trials and not have a reaction to other dogs passing within a foot or two.

All in all, we had a great day hanging out with friends! But now Steeler and I are tired! :-)


  1. Yay! Steeler. I was glad to read the post this morning after last weeks disappointent for you. You are doing a great job with this boy and will someday reap many rewards---and awards. Just think about how much you have learned about dogs because of him. Ha! Keep up the good work.

  2. Wow! No wonder you and Steeler are tired. That was quite a training day. Sounds like a lot of fun, too. Isn't it funny how we can be such a big part of our dog's reactivity? Maybe we humans should go to classes taught by dogs to learn how to behave around them :)

    Great job, Jenn. Steeler is a lucky boy to be able to go to all these places and learn and have fun. Wish we lived closer together!