Saturday, September 5, 2009

Big training goals revealed.

I have 4 whole days off. In a row. I don't go back until next Wednesday. NEXT Wednesday!!! Not counting the few clients I have scattered though those days, in the grand scheme of my normal schedule that barely counts as work. I am very excited and almost don't know what to do with myself.


One of my goals these next few days is to try out something called the Canny Collar. Being a trainer I sometimes get free stuff to test drive. I got this awhile ago and set it aside where I promptly forgot about it. I came across it looking for a leash for Jenny in my equipment stash. I will try it on my Jack and maybe also a couple of shelter dogs. (Jack is not generally a puller.) I think it probably works for the pulling issue, I am just unsure if it is as good as a Gentle Leader or Halti. With those head collars you have the advantage of directing the dogs gaze to some extent. It doesn't appear to be the case with this version, but I could be wrong.

My other goal, and my announcement to some extent, has a story attached. I went to the movies a couple of weeks ago and saw "Julie & Julia". For those that aren't familiar it is a story about a woman who decides to cook all of the recipes in Julia Child's cookbook and blog about it along the way. (I bet you know where this is going.) It was a fabulous movie and it gave me the idea to try something similar. This is my book of choice:

101 Dog Tricks by Kyra Sundance and Chalcy. (of Showdog Moms and Dads and Pet Star fame)

I am going to try to teach every trick in this book to my dogs. I have decided not to chose just one dog either. Mostly because since I have 3 to chose from it seems mean to leave anyone out of the fun. I suspect Jenny may get the lions share because she can really use the mental exercise more than the others. I may even try using some shelter dogs along the way too if appropriate. It will be interesting to see how well the books instructions hold up tho I will probably deviate when needed. I also see this as a great way to work my dogs more. Training other peoples dogs all the time sometimes means my own get the short end of the stick of my time.

I think I am going to not give myself any deadlines. In the movie she had a year as her deadline to motivate her. For me I think it might be counter productive. Plus it is supposed to be fun and I don't want to add any extra stress to the process. (trainer know thyself) I plan on taking photos and videos of the finished tricks as I complete each one. I will also give feedback on how the process for each one went.

I will probably start this weekend. I am not sure if I will go in order of the book or not. They have easy, advanced, intermediate and expert tricks all mixed in together. They are listed in sections instead like funny, chores, games, jumping, obstacles, and etc. etc. The first 4 listed are groundwork: sit, down, come and stay. I'll try to get video of that this weekend. All 3 of them can do this one already.

So wish us luck! I'm sure we will need it at some point. VBG

P.S. Missy is doing ok. She is having fewer episodes which is good. I am also going to try to catch one on video which may be helpful. And I have the name of the canine neurologist and cardiologist if it gets to that point. And even though the docs at my hospital aren't on call this weekend they are both on standby for me if things go south. Gotta love a back up plan.


JulieandCaleb said...

What a great idea! I look forward to your upcoming posts. Caleb could use a few more tricks in his repertoire, I'll have to look for this book for us!

Kyra said...

Hi Marie-
What a wonderful project! I love it! I look forward to hearing about your progress. I agree, I also need goals to keep myself motivated. Just on a sidenote, we also have titles for Novice, Int., Adv., Exp. Trick Dogs. To get your novice title your dog has to know 15 tricks.

Cait said...

I'm doing the same project, but my copy of the book got absconded with so I've been waiting for the new copy to arrive so I could start! :P

DAWGMAN said...

Hi, I would like to know how that new leash works for you. Can never have too many tools for the toolbox!!

Tom said...

Please keep us updated on this, I would really love to see how this works out because I have a pitbull, she's harmless but at times anxious. This seems like it could possibly work wonders. Thanks