Joon – Two weeks

JoonThe little darling has been here now a fortnight. Boy, what a mix of wild and crazy and submissive and worm-like she is (not to mention bitchy and sweet) – a study in contradictions!

We’ve been blessed with some lovely weather for November (except for two days of solid rain last week, but we won’t count them): sunny days in the 60s with cool (well, cold) nights. For the most part I cannot use crappy weather as an excuse not to train my dog(s). So I’ve been training them.

My training sessions with Joon consist mainly of taking her to our agility area, which is a totally fenced area where I can take her leash off and allow her the opportunity to interact with me or with the environment. At this point I’m at about 60%, which ain’t bad. I have to work to get that: yummy food and fun toys, in addition to my scintillating conversation and charming personality.

Joon, November '06Joon will work for food, as expected, but only to a point. She likes it, but still worries when asked to work for it. We work in short bursts on static behaviors like sit, and are able to work on moving behaviors for longer periods, since movement is her natural state. She’s continuing to work on low jumps and tunnels, as well as the tire.

She’s still not choosing to work, i.e., she’s not “offering behaviors,” which is what we’re always looking for with clicker training – though she does offer the sit. I haven’t been using the clicker extensively, since I like it best for static behaviors and we’re not doing a lot of them. 101 things to do with a box coming up soon, however.

She tore the heck out of Ernie’s tiger so its remains hang on the whip, below which I have attached a lovely monkey, which Joon adores to tug and mangle and would love to steal. When Ernie was given the opportunity to play with his toy, he chose the 4″ strip of tiger tail that remains, ignoring the chunky monkey with long, floppy arms. Dogs are funny. They probably don’t like change as much as we don’t like change.

Changes to Joon’s Checklist this week have included the following accomplishments:

  • a sit,
  • she comes to her name,
  • and she’s doing some serious tugging.

I’m psyched about all of that!

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