Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Training Tuesday: On the Road Edition

The days are getting shorter, the temperature is getting colder, and the trial I've signed up for is getting closer. All three of these factors mean that it is time for me to move away from training in the field across the street from our house and on to more difficult settings. We started today at a pet store:

I was pleased to see that, on the whole, her heeling is still good. Although we both make mistakes (she goes a bit wide at times, and my handling fell apart completely), I absolutely love the amount of of attention and enthusiasm I'm getting from her. And since my entire goal for the trial is to have fun and feel connected, well... I think we'll be successful.

Now that I know she's capable of good work in a more distracting environment, I'll start pushing more and making her work harder for her cookies. We'll also work on a bit more self-control (the visiting, while awesome in terms of her reactivity, is not so awesome from a training standpoint). My goal is to get her out somewhere new two to three times a week from now until the trial, focusing on happiness, not perfection.

As a side note, the sequence from approximately 2:20 to 2:35 is my favorite. From the way she leaps onto the screen, to the way she goes to visit with the stranger, to the way she stands on her hind legs in heel position... well, she's terribly cute. I wouldn't mind NQing on cute.


Ninso said...

Good girl Maisy!

Alexis said...

Looks good! That's a distracting environment and she does so well. If you already know this, sorry, just wanted to make sure you're aware: I'd keep my treats in my left pocket and only reward with my left hand (at least for heeling - for her fronts you should probably alternate hands because she's coming in crooked to the cookie side). It will probably help with the couple times you fixed forged sits (she's coming forward in anticipation of the treat being delivered in front of your leg). If you reward straight down your pant seam with your left hand she'll focus on stopping there. It probably wouldn't hurt to remove the social pressure of you bending and leaning toward her to cross over with your right hand too. Might also help with wideness.


Crystal Thompson said...

Yeah, that treat delivery thing is a weakness for me. I just feel so AWKWARD using my left hand, and I've never managed the skill. I know I need to do that though. :(