Lola's absolute favorite toy is a stuffed Rooster that "crows", rather than squeaks.
It's soft & fuzzy and makes a cool sound & is perfect for playing tug.
"I like to tug with my best friend Penny"
After many, many play sessions "Mr. Chicken" looks like this:
So I keep a bunch of extra Roosters on hand for when the squawk box is smashed or he's been killed & gutted.
"Mr. Chicken...meet (new & improved) Mr. Chicken"
But if he's still squawkin', Lola doesn't care if his face is ripped off...
"Are you done taking pictures of Mr. Chicken yet? Can I have him????"
"Scotty!!! Look what I have!"
Training progress (2-5-07):
It was a negative 3 degrees this morning when I took Sherman out. The temps were up to a balmy 8 degrees by the time I got home from work. Still too cold for walking.
Penny – worked more on the Swing finish. She’s getting it. I don’t know why this is so hard for us…seems like it comes pretty easy to other dogs. She did 5 out of 6 Finishes correctly (form wasn’t perfect…but I’m not concerned with that yet) and in a separate session I got 6 out of 8. Did some SitStays….I’m working on longer out-of-sight Stays & bigger distractions. I’ve been tossing food all around her after cueing the Stay. Also doing all kind of obnoxious movements (jumping up & down, running away, laying on the floor). She never broke once.
Lola - she is such a fun little dog to train. It’s kind of freakish how quickly she picks up on stuff. As soon as she sees the clicker she’s starts throwing herself into all of her behaviors to see what will work. I always back her up and ask for something easy to start. Played around with fun stuff she new (Spin, Weave, Twirl). Then did some basic not so fun stuff (Stays, heeling, quarter turns, Fronts). Worked on paw targeting as I haven’t taught her to shake yet. Took her a little while to figure out I wasn’t gonna click for nose targeting, but once she got it…she got it good. She was offering me her paw to shake in no time.
Sherman – Dynamic Dogs was held at the shelter. This is a really great group of dogs & handlers. We all seem pretty comfortable with each other & the dogs all get along well. Even Sherman. Marsha started class with a discussion about the Dog Flu and how there have been reports of dogs infected in our area. She also discussed the risks of doing Therapy work in hospitals and nursing homes due to infectious diseases. Next week, we go back to Pitt & are meeting with someone from the student newspaper, Pitt News, will be doing a story on the WPHS & the TDI dogs from class. Pretty cool.
Then we got to work. Did some round-the-room heeling and Figure Eights with the dogs as posts & Sherman did really well. He has pretty decent attention. Did lots of stays with distractions...Sherman's stay needs some work. He lays down on the Sits and can only hold a Down for 20 - 30 seconds. Marsha had us line up all the dogs, put them in a Stay & walk across the room. The idea was to call each dog by name, & your dog wasn't to move unless he/she was called. Didn't go so well. We tried several times w/ several different patterns and only 2 or 3 dogs could do it. None of us took it too seriously & it's really hard not to laugh when your dog is enthusiastically trotting toward you. So we all moved to the outside of the room & put the dogs on Stay in a circle with their backs to each other. This worked so much better. Every dog held their stay and only came when they were called by name. I love this class!