Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Day 202

This morning was nice and I say that with a question in my voice. With Lucile here I get the luxury of getting to laze around in the morning. But actually sleeping in is not allowed. Sanity just knowsthat if I am not up then at the very least I have to have my eyes open. Towards that goal she applies herself with great diligence. By 7:30 I had long sense given up, gotten up and dressed. If staying in bed late is that much work it just ain't worth it.

Off to the chiropractor to get my back straight again. This was Sanity's first visit to a doctor's office. She did pretty well. Managed to hold the down/stay over in the corner out of the way for most of the visit. The only time she misjudged was when I had to switch from one side to the other and she thought my movement meant we were leaving. A quick tap coupled with a down command and she was back where she was supposed to be.

Next was a stop at Home Depot to pick up a few things needed for the house or yard. She trotted around beside the big, noisy clunker of a store scooter just like a pro of many years.

Back home she just had to hang out in the kitchen while I got dinner started and then fixed us all some lunch. She is so curious and interested in every single thing that happens around here. I sort of lost count of the number of times she got her nose slapped away from being some place it didn't belong. Such is life of puppy.

Scent work. Having taken note yesterday of her starting to back up when the "find" command was given I made sure to position myself pretty much with my back to the wall when we set up to do this exercise. It is much easier to limit options at this stage than to allow a bad habit to get started or have to correct for the starting of a bad habit. It just makes me crazy when people let their dogs circle, circle, circle rather than doing the thing they were told to do.

So back to wall, I gave the first find command. Sure enough Sanity tried to back up and spin. Didn't work. She backed straight into the wall and bounced forward, some very mild, whispered voice encouragement sent her the rest of the way. Once out there she started to dither around and pretty quickly decided to simply return without the article. Time for a correction of the guidance variety. The next couple of attempts were pretty much the same thing. Then she took the command, went at once and straight to the correct article. I very much doubt there was any scent discrimination going on and am sure it was all based upon article placement. Doesn't matter at this point. What does matter is that I got to softly praise her for her choice.

On the next sent the article had been placed in a new position. She went out and grabbed up the taboo article. There was no sniffing at all, just a grab and go. I stepped in and corrected. The taboo article was re-scented and replaced. I sent her again. She said, "no, I'd rather not have to make a decision."

I said, "Oh yes, you must go out there and make a decision and you must do it without spinning of dithering." And so I corrected her out to the proper article. Twice more this happened and then blink! I gave the find command and she went straight to the two article pile without any hesitated. Once there she carefully sniffed both articles, picked up and returned with the correct one. Great! With two successes it was time to quit. Tomorrow will be another day.

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