Thursday, December 14, 2006

Lola & I graduated from Feisty Fidos class tonight. What a great experience! I'm so glad our friend Lilian squeezed us into this session. I learned a lot, Lola improved a lot & together, we'll get over the little bumps. I do believe Lola will grow out of her "feisty" stage.

My initial thought that Lola was frustrated rather than "feisty" was confirmed when treats just weren't working for one of the dogs in class. A braided rope tug toy was a much better reward for the little Scottie & the sight of him playing w/o her was too much for Lola. Self control, little girl. We'll keep working on it!

After all..."I'm a lover, not a fighter!"

Observations over the last 6 weeks:

Lola has great name recognition. I've never worked much on an attention word, but have always reinforced "checking in" (eye contact w/o prompting) and response to her name.

She also has a pretty darn good Leave It. I'll continue to use this on walks when she hears a dog bark 10 blocks away.

Walk Away is great!! I love this & so does Lola. Note to self to keep bringing treats on walks & practice, practice, practice.

We had a chance to work on a little bit of everything leaving class tonight. A volunteer was trying to get a beautiful, bold brindle Pitbull back into the building while all of us Feisty Fidos were leaving. We walked out the front door, the Pit rounded the corner and I said "Lola, Walk Away" and we made a quick left into the grass. One Woof! and she turned her attention to me. I talked to her the whole way to the car & she kept looking back & forth...him then me, him then me...but she managed to control herself and didn't bark again. Lots of dogs were in the parking lot and I did a big Find It (threw a handful of treats into the backseat) and we drove away w/o incident. Even after the treats were gone & we passes a yippee JRT...I said Leave It and she looked at me for a treat (which I surprisingly had!) and she didn't bark. I LOVE progress!!!