Saturday, November 21, 2009

Training Day

Today marks a full week since we adopted K, dog number 3. She's not perfect (what dog is?), but she is a really good dog. While we are not quite ready to leave the dogs alone for any significant periods of time yet, we don't have to watch them quite so closely. Hubby and I spent a good deal of time cleaning up leaves (again!) today. The dogs were cavorting in the yard for hours. Not unattended, but not closely scrutinized either.

Of course, if I weren't already convinced that it was safe, that wouldn't have happened. But I've been watching the dogs so closely all week, I feel like I've been monitoring some sort of science experiment.

It's really neat seeing them together. Just as we'd hoped, Belle and K are ideal playmates. But there is one problem with K. She has a super-sensitive nose. And when she gets on the scent of something, she is very focused. So focused that when we tell her to come to us, she doesn't always listen.

Which could be a problem at the WV place where there's lots of critters and no fences. So Hubby has been working with K daily, weather permitting. He's been working with the other girls, too, since, like kids, they are very jealous of each other. If we do something with one dog, we tend to do it with the others, too.

K does come after being told to stay for a period, but she just sort of mosies along. Hubby hoped maybe Belle would speed her up a bit. He said it sped her up a little bit.

In the photo above, K is still staying, although she did stand up. Belle, on the other hand, jumped the gun a bit. I had to take pictures from inside the house so as not to cause any distraction.

It was nice being able to watch while Hubby did his training thing.

Here they are holding in a "down" and "stay" position while Hubby slowly backs away.

Then, when he blows his whistle, they come. Well, that's the idea anyway. K needs a little bit of practice. Personally, I think she's just not completely sure about us yet. She likes us, she's just not as used to the routine, our personalities, mannerisms, etc., as the other girls.

Meg had a turn, too. She and Belle are both good with the "come" and "sit" commands. But we've never really had to use "stay" much. Well, we could have used it many times, but we never needed it enough to enforce.

Hubby says Meg is the best of the three with the "stay" command.

You can really see the focus on her face.

Yep, that is serious focus. Do you think the cut-up bits of chicken hot dogs he's using as a reward have anything to do with that?

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