Thursday, December 8, 2011

Baby Steps and Baby Food...

We had our last class of the session and it was a great one! I had taken Gilda to Akron Children's earlier in the day and she did very well (after her usual 15 minutes of excitability). One of the docs (an avid rescue dog lover) picked Gilda up and put her on his lap where she sat all stiff legged for the first minute. She then seemed to realize that it wasn't so scary after all and that a nice rub down was worth being forced to actually touch a human! She never ceases to amaze me...

I wasn't sure what state of mind she'd be in for class after a stressful 2 hours in the hospital but she was happy and very willing to do a nice little warm-up with me including jumps, tunnels and an A-frame!

When Linda arrived, we got right down to business. It seems we no longer need the 'Happy Game' to get Gilda geared up! We did some short jump and tunnel sequences with some front and rear crosses, changing it up pretty frequently and Gilda did great. I think we  had fewer errors tonight (and yes I know all the errors are my errors!) than we had in any other class. Gilda basically did whatever I asked of her and she did it happily and with moderate speed! Gilda also did a fairly respectable send from a jump to tunnel, something she's not been real comfortable doing.

{See? I CAN stay!}
We brought Pico out and did some Jump practice with him. His Jumps are now on cue ('Hup' for Gilda and 'Jump' for Pico... What was I thinking?!). My homework with Pico is to really work on his 'Stay' so that we can begin Recalls to Heel work. We also introduced him to the Teeter. Using a table, we had him get on the Teeter midway and run to a target at the end. Pico has never been on a Teeter or used a target but an onlooker would have assumed that he's done it many times! It's very different working with a dog with no Obstacle fear! Linda is guessing that at 8 pounds, Pico will probably use a Four-On behavior for his Teeter.

Lastly, we brought Gilda back out for some Teeter work. We started by asking her to get on and walk with no movement. She was tentative but willing (Linda's baby food helped). We then gave the Teeter some slight movement and finally asked her to do the Teeter with a few inches of movement. On her last attempt, I could almost feel her relax and she ran it without shakiness or hesitation (see video)

Baby steps and Baby food!!!

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