a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: August 1994

Monday, August 01, 1994

Remington Learns Tricks and Obedience

SUMMARY: He's mostly a good boy.

Backfill: Oct 22, 2007
Remington's training is going great. If you'da aksed me on Saturday, I'd have moaned and beaten my head on the nearest concrete block. Consistent, you know?

He's pretty good on basic stuff in the driveway when it's just me & him. (Add Jim or other friends and it goes to heck.) So I decided that he needs more distractions to practice with.

There's an AnJan Pet Supply about a 5-minute walk from here, so last week I started taking him down to their parking lot every day. Lots of distractions! Of course, to him, someone driving by is a Major Totally Awesome Once-In-A-Lifetime Opportunity to See Something Really Interesting. Let alone people opening and closing car doors and walking by in the distance.

Other dogs are yet another level higher in Fascination Quotient.

Thursday, Friday, and Saturday it was like he'd never been on a leash before and as though "Sit" had suddenly been translated to Swahili. Or maybe Martian. I was very discouraged.

We took a break from going there on Sunday, and this morning when we went, he was a *sweetheart*!

We've been learning tricks gradually, too; he learned "Shake" in about 2 shakes. Easiest thing I've EVER taught a dog! He loves it-- "Gee, all I have to do is lift my foot, which I'd probably do anyway, and I get FOOD! Good deal!"--as opposed to having to actually WORK for goodies in things like balancing the goodie on the nose, crawling across the floor, or begging--all of which he's making progress on but is still a bit wimpy at. (Actually goodie-on-the-nose showed great improvement over the weekend--finally!--we've been working on it for 2 months!)

Anyway, I'm still doing a lot more than we've covered in class, but it's great to have Pam's experience and suggestions for things that are giving us trouble.

SHE thinks Remington learns things REALLY QUICKLY--that's because he is on his absolutely best behavior (now) in class so that he can impress the Babes. Little does she know what devils possess him after we leave--