Saturday, October 29, 2005

Day 100

Dogs out, dogs in, baby its not only dark outside but cold at 7 a.m. Not a single dog was interested in staying out for longer than it took to pee. For some reason I find myself with almost as many dogs here as I do during the summer months. Can't figure out why. Wonder were everyone is going this weekend.

It isn't our turn to teach until the 10 a.m. lesson. That is a lesson four and Sanity once again shows her maturity. She travels down the steep basement stairs a few at a time, pausing to wait for me without being reminded. At the bottom she does need a reminder sit and then we move on into the studio where she totally ignores the rather rude dog in the doorway and moves over to her bed/station without being told. Lesson starts. I need her to demonstrate the down placement. She steps right up and handles the entire demonstration without a flaw. She is much too young and short to be any help in the stand and brace department, however she does manage a stand while letting me use her shoulders for balance. So getting up wasn't as bad as I feared. Back to her bed/station while the student practices.

Next comes a demonstration of all the pieces of the formal recall and the reasons why it is being taught to a dog who "know" come. Her faked break of the sit/stay was almost letter perfect. Her bounce back to the sit location as I faked a correction wasn't as smooth as it will become in another year or so, but the idea is there. The one place I wish there was less speed and at the same time don't want to lose any speed at all is the response to the come command. The problem from a demonstration viewpoint is that the entire thing is over so fast that the students aren't sure just what they saw. Over all a good job.

Break time and then we are back to teaching. This time it is a small group class. An advanced group who is studying each exercise in small bites the better to learn how to both teach and train. Today we started working on the sit/stay as it is taught during the very first two days. Somehow that morphed into teaching a fast, straight sit at heel. Sanity was wonderful. She wasn't fazed one bit by my having to set her up to "fail" on several occasions. Seems to understand it is just a part of the job and her being able to do her job makes her one step up where the other dogs are concerned. Once the class was over the one thing needed that had to be deferred was a good run to blow off the tension of working a hard class. There was way too much repair work going on in the yard and the big gates were open, with trucks coming and going. So the run had to wait.

All in all a good day.

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