Intermediate Obedience Week 7 (aka Dahlia the graduated...again) - The Book of Ramblings
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crysania4
crysania4
Crysania
Mon, Nov. 17th, 2008 09:22 pm
Intermediate Obedience Week 7 (aka Dahlia the graduated...again)

Today was our last day of intermediate obedience class at Petsmart. David didn't come tonight because he has a big presentation to do tomorrow and so had to stay home to work.

I expected it to be a bit like the last graduation class. A couple sits/downs/stays and then we'd take pictures and call it a night. Except last time we had 4 or 5 dogs to take pictures of and this time there were only two.

Class for Dahlia and I actually started early -- the moment we walked in around 6:40pm actually. Our trainer was training her advanced class to do sit/down stays by the door with people and kids and dogs walking in and out. She had us walk Dahlia by the dogs as they did their stays. Then she used us for meeting strange dogs on the street and standing and not greeting the other dog. Dahlia and I walked along and stopped when we saw the other person, greeted. The dogs had to stay at our sides and not try to greet the other. Then we continued on our way. Dahlia did great; so did the other dogs.

Then she and I wandered the store for a little bit while they wrapped their class up. I really had to go to the bathroom, so I attempted to take her in with me. Well, that was a no-go. She put down her foot, so to speak, and refused to move. The second time I tried to coax her in, she actually looked like she was shaking a bit, so I just stopped. I wasn't about to let my dog panic. We walked away and I got her calm again. I still had to go to the bathroom so when I went back and the class was gone, I asked our trainer if I could leave her in the room with her while I ran to the bathroom. We decided it was a good chance to see what she did when Mom left her alone with someone else. Well, I'm glad to say she did great. Our trainer said she didn't whine or cry or panic or pull on the leash. She sat there and watched and waited for me to come back. I was really proud of her. It's part of the CGC (Canine Good Citizen test) that I want her to do, so I'm glad to see she did pretty well with that. The most important thing is that the dog doesn't panic.

A lot of things happened during the class. We did some walking in the aisles. Our trainer told us to use this pit bull that was in the aisle as a distraction. Which we did successfully. On another go around, we ran into him again. His owner clearly was trying to control the dog (who was, ultimatley, a rather calm and good dog). She kept telling him "NO NO NO" when he tried to even look Dahlia's way. Then she kept frantically telling him "LIE DOWN..DOWN! DOWN DOWN DOWN." And when he didn't respond, she JERKED him the ground, shouting "DOWN." I said something like "ohhhhh" in what was probably a surprised and disapproving tone. THe woman said, in a rather snotty voice "It doesn't hurt him." I had to bite my tongue, as I'm not the trainer. Instead, I stepped away, walked a few feet away and with only hand signals, calmly had Dahlia sit and lay down. I turned, looked at the woman, gave Dahlia a release cue and walked away. I think that made my point clearer than telling her I thought she was an idiot. Fucking idiot Cesar Millan and his abusive methods. God I seriously hate that guy and wish he were taken off the air. [/rant off]

I'm not sure what our trainer thought of them, as she was right then when she jerked her dog to the floor. I hope she made a few training suggestions.

We then headed over to do stays by the the fish tanks, something new for us. Well, Dahlia's threshold issues came out again. She wouldn't come all the way back there. Our trainer was surprised she hadn't seen this from her before and wished she had. She got me to coax her back there and had me drop the leash and walk around the corner for the last few feet. Dahlia's need to not lose her mom overcame her difficulties. She then suggested going back out to where Dahlia felt safe. Well, we did, but then I decided to have her come back one more time, and the second time she was much better.

We both her and Schmutzi (I think that's how you spell it, though I could be wrong) in a down stay by the fish tanks. Then, since they were doing so good, she had us try something new. First we each stepped around the corner while the trainer held the leash, returning shortly from he same direction and treating/releasing the dog. Both dogs did great. The next time, she held both their leashes while they both were in a down stay and had us walk down the aisle and around and come up from behind them. The first time, both dogs took a moment to see us and remained down in a stay until just moments before we got to them. Try again! The second time, both dogs stayed until released. Our trainer was most impressed with Dahlia because she said she's smart enough that as soon as I disappeared around the corner, she turned her head to look down the aisle we had come from before. Yay for smart dogs!

We also did waits in the aisle with Colleen throwing treats. The first time Dahlia went for the treat and for some reason the "leave it" command escaped me. Duh. The second time she didn't go for the treat, though I spent a fair amount of time confusing her. Turning her around, while trying to get her to not sit on or trip over the exceedingly long leash, plus dealing with the lady with the pitbull and her stupid daughter YET AGAIN didn't help much. She ended up a bit stressed (as evidenced by her yawn, which our trainer poiinted out). Luckily, at that time, class was over and it was on to taking pictures of Dahlia in her grad hat. She did very well this time and I got a few really cute photos.

graduation1

graduation3

graduation8

graduation10



And a few before we left for the class photos.
tug2

tug3

tug6

tug5
(she's a grinner!)


I also talked to our trainer about the Agility for Fun classes and she thinks they'd be a great idea for Dahlia. We met several people at the store tonight who were impressed with her, starting with the woman and her two kids on their way out when we were coming in, plus one of the women who was there with a puppy for the class before us, plus a couple people in line when we were on our way out and even the cashier, who gave her a treat which Dahlia immediately ate right there on the rug). So all together it was a great class!

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10CommentReply

angely78
angely78
angely78
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 04:08 am (UTC)

gosh, she's just so pretty! I wish we could meet her... Kaitlyn's really good for her age when it comes to not trying to smother doggies. :)


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crysania4
crysania4
Crysania
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 01:48 pm (UTC)

I hope Kaitlyn can meet Dahlia sometime. I'm sure it will happen. Dahlia's only 3, so she has some years ahead of her! And she's SO GOOD with kids, even ones that try to smother her. She puts up with shit from every kid who comes her way and totally soaks it up.


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a_kosmos
a_kosmos
Scheherazade is my patron saint.
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 04:40 am (UTC)

What a pretty smart girl! She looks like a wild fierce dog in the photo where she has her grey furry toy.


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crysania4
crysania4
Crysania
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 01:51 pm (UTC)

Haha she does. We call her "ferocious beast" when she's like that. Scary dog! LOL

But shhh...don't tell anyone this. She'll let you take it right out of her mouth. ;-) She's the biggest pushover.


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jenandbronze
Jen and Nixon
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 06:34 am (UTC)

Before my computer decided to shut itself off, I was going to comment and say that you have a dog that seems quite proud of his accomplishments in graduating the class... LOL!


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crysania4
crysania4
Crysania
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 01:52 pm (UTC)

She does look incredibly proud! She did the last time too. I got better pictures of her this time since she's good with the "wait" command now and wasn't when we graduated from basic obedience. I think she knows she did something special!

Of course, there was also doggy crack there and she'll do ANYTHING for that.


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anterastilis
anterastilis
Granola Girl
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 01:44 pm (UTC)

Congratulations to the grad! :D

When Lucy graduated from Puppy Class, we couldn't do ANYTHING to get the mortarboard on her head. What pictures we do have are mainly blurry of her trying to get the hat off, and a few with the mortarboard on her butt.


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crysania4
crysania4
Crysania
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 01:46 pm (UTC)

I'm amazed at how Dahlia puts up with the hat on. The other dogs I've seen have tried to pull it off. She just sits there with it on like it's nothing! Even when it fell forward onto her eyes she just sat there and didn't try to pull it off.


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jeannekins
jeannekins
jeannekins
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 02:06 pm (UTC)

sounds like dahlia is more than ready to take, and pass the cgc test. seriously, compared to some of the things you're doing with her, it's easy stuff. sit, down, stay, walk nicely on a leash, let a stranger greet you and pet her. the hardest part is her staying with someone else for a few minutes with you out of sight. piece of cake.


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crysania4
crysania4
Crysania
Tue, Nov. 18th, 2008 02:10 pm (UTC)

I've become less worried about her staying with someone else. The trainer said she didn't whine, pace, bark or anything. She just sat there with her eyes glued to where I had disappeared. She didn't even go nuts when I came back, just wagged her tail and waited for me to come up to her.

I'm mostly worried about the part with the dog. She always wants to greet. If I have treats, she won't be that interested, but if I don't...forget it.

The major thing I need to work on is weaning her off treats, since they don't allow them. She'll do ANYTHING for food, but sometimes will not obey a command if there's not food present. So we're working on weaning away from the treats.


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