Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Day 272

What a lovely day. So how come by 10:30 I was really in trouble? Well, for starters I really didn't have a dog to work by my side during the lesson I was teaching. True, Wrap stepped up to the plate and helped out with the longer distance place command. True, Sage stepped up to the plate and helped out with the demonstration of how to place a dog in the down position. No, I couldn't use Tyler because using a small, willing dog to show how to handle a large and unwilling dog just doesn't cut it.

The down was the problem. I am working with a husband/wife team. Only they weren't being a very good team. In fact, they had reached the stage where I butt in and say,"Sorry guys, but I don't do marriage counseling. See, I'm only a dog trainer. You really will need to make an appointment with a good marriage counselor. So they stopped bickering and went back to paying attention to me. And then I proceeded to "calf-wrestle" that 60 pound olf of a Lab puppy into a down, not once but three times. After that, wife decided she would be able to take over and get the job done and so she did. "Good girl, you get a gold star."

I was still pretty beat when Lauren and her grandnephew Noah showed up for a Tyler lesson. It certainly wasn't the best quality lesson, but a lesson it was. At least at this stage the lesson is as much just hanging out and getting to know one another as it is anything else. Don showed up before we were finished and we ended up out in the front yard. That way I could just sit on the front step and do everything sitting down. I guess I should have gone inside and gotten my scooter, but I didn't.

Here is a picture of Lauren, Don,Noah, Bitsy and of course the little black dog that you can hardly see, Mr. Tyler. Here they are working on the "up" command. Here they are just finishing an "off" command. And finally, Tyler, you good boy.

Tyler is also moving right along with the retrieve work. We have finished the introduction and have moved to the open on command stage. He is so very, very easy it is going to be hard to hold back and make sure he has a fair and complete introduction.


  1. Hey, the good boy pic is a good black dog pic!

  2. Thanks! I needed to hear that. I have been getting sort of depressed about the quality of black boy pictures I'm getting. Seems to me most of them just show a small black blob and you are hard pressed to even be able to see what, if anything, said blob is doing.

  3. Pat McKinney3:12 PM

    They need to have a quite dark background of a distinctly different color from the dog. We find that black Cairns photograph well against red. Dark green would work, or brown. Tyler is a beautiful boy!

  4. Pat, I know you are right. The problem just happens to be that I don't really want to try a pose the pictures. I really want them to be snapshots of what is going on. And I suspect it is that very goal that will continue to get me in trouble with small black boys.

    I totally and completely agree with you about him being a beautiful boy. I can't believe we got so lucky and actually have him here. I swear I would be wanting one for myself if only he were drip-dry.

  5. Pat McKinney1:56 AM

    Maybe he would photograph well in deep shade. I think a lot of it is not having a bright light area from which the camera can gauge the light level. Under the trees, shady side of the house, etc.