Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Class of 2010????

I haven’t been to school for too long because I am exciting to think that I may be graduating something this year.

I may be overly optimistic but today was our first class and I am proud to report, Hailey was not the worst dog (I would put her in the middle of the pack, and I can handle that, average is good!). This was my only hope going into this class, how embarrassing if a behaviour analyst can’t control her dog!

When asked what my goals for the class were I said "general puppy manners, but not too well behaved because it would make for a boring blog and her followers would be disappointed!"

About the class:
  • There are 7 puppies in total, aged 5 months to 1.
  • 3 have finished puppy school (this is basic obedience).
  • One other dog has only lived with their family for about the same length of time as Hailey.
  • Everyone else knows what kind of dog they have. We are the only “mutt”.

Proud mom moments:
  • She sat every time I asked, even with distractions (even if she wasn’t always right beside me in the correct spot).
  • Her healing was ok at the beginning of the class – not too embarrassing.
  • She had the perfect greeting with a dog that came in late (the best).
  • She didn’t bark the most but had the loudest bark (and is not the biggest).
  • She did not pee or poo on the floor (our other 2 visits she has).
  • She was very friendly with all the people and dogs.

Other Moments: (and how to spin this as a positive)
  • She does not like her new car harness. If she is wearing it and in the back, she whines and tries to chew it off. She is better in the front seat. (The plus: At least didn’t try and sit on my knee or destroy anything in the car).
  • She kept jumping up and nipping when I wanted to give her treats which she never does at home! (The plus: I had a very powerful reinforcer).
  • At the end of the class she was the worst healer. The other dogs in general were better at the end, my dog was better at the beginning before she was tired. (The plus: She can work with distractions when she is fresh).
  • She was a little nervous around the other dogs at first. (The plus: Gemi has taught her to try and read other dogs before running head first into trouble).
  • The long explanations of reinforcement and behaviour shaping. (The plus: I understand the basic principles of behaviour change procedures).

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