Monday, March 16, 2009

Obedience Semi-Private

Tonight Ike and I had a semi-private with Katrin. It went REALLY well. I am VERY pleased.

The main thing I wanted to work on with Ike are his down-stays and sit-stays.

I mentioned how manic he gets at home, offering behaviors. Katrin suggested I need to work on his duration and make him understand that STAYING in the down or sit is exactly what I want - nothing more.

Katrin suggested dropping cookies on his head. At first I bent down to hand him the cookie and of course he popped up. She re-iterated - "No, I meant drop cookies on his head!" This was quite successful, except when I dropped poorly and Ike went scurrying after the cookie!

Ike was offering super quick downs. Then he started offering them willy-nilly, so I mixed it up with some halts and Halt/Walk Around Dog. He did super. I hesitated to do Down/Walk Around Dog tonight. I didn't want to blow his brain and things were going well. I am pleased with how well he did in a new-ish location with a happy FCR in the room.

Katrin and I had discussed whether or not I should use a NRM with him or not when he pops up from a down. To date I have been saying "oops," and essentially starting over/trying again. She suggested trying a NRM. I expressed some concern that Ike might 1.) freak out and shut-down; 2.) think it is part of the behavior chain. Katrin doesn't feel that will be an issue with Ike given the way his brain works.

Katrin had me put Ike in a Down-Stay, walk away and toss a treat at him. The first time I walked back toward him to toss his treat, he sat up. I said "eh-eh" and WAITED. I did not repeat the cue, I was a very good handler and waited. Ike returned to a down. Good boy, Ike!!!

All in all, an excellent lesson and I feel like I have some specific things to practice that will be very helpful. We plan on meeting again next Monday.


Katrin said...

You and Ike did very well last night!

Jules said...

Thanks! It *felt* good.