Saturday, August 21, 2010
Becca's Obedience Career
Lyric’s puppies were raised with a puppy nanny-Helsa-along with the breeder Helen. Between the two of them the puppies had continous human contact and training from the time they were born. Noises, cats, ramps, stairs, children anything they might encounter as an adult was introduced as soon as they were aware of their surroundings. Training was started when they could walk around. Holding a piece of food near their little noses can make them do marvelous things at a young age. By the time they were six weeks old all puppies would willingly sit or down for treats.
This has been the case for Becca. I continued this type of training when Becca went home with me and then into her puppy socialization class where she additionally learned the concertina down ( front legs down first followed by the rear) as opposed to the dog sitting first and then downing. While she was standing, I held a piece of food between her front legs and as she went to grab it, I continued to put the food further back and down between her front legs until her front legs were on the ground and her rear then followed to the ground. I’m hoping eventually to show her in open obedience and we are currently enrolled in a class for this. At this point in time, she is one step ahead of the class in the “drop on recall” training because she already knows the concertina down—I did, however, give this a different command instead of “down”—I ask her to “crash” and it has worked quite well for us.
BTW--I’m happy to report that Becca received a qualifying score AND a third place at her first entry in the Beginning Novice class at an all- breed obedience trial. This is a new AKC titling event that became effective in July of this year. It’s fun and less stressful (on the handler!!) than the Novice obedience class and makes a nice transition between rally and the novice class. It incorporates rally and basic obedience.
Maybe this planning ahead when the pups were so young will pay off in Becca’s obedience “career”—I really think that it has so far.