Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Under and Out

Haddie naturally selects furniture to go Under. She started on her first day at our house going under our small round table and four kitchen chairs. She is quickly outgrowing that spot; but I will let her squeeze in for as long as she thinks she is able.

I was doing work on my laptop, which is on the desk in the kitchen, last night and Haddie volunteered to join me. She went Under the desk and Sat, then layed Down, then stretched out and fell asleep. Could this be her new Under spot?
She paid no attention to the cords, but I will need to organize them better. It just looks bad and she could change her interest at any moment during these early puppy weeks. All the things you find when you have a puppy underfoot. What used to be normal and no big deals, are recognized rather quickly.
I am working on the Down command this week. What fun to see a dog go from no comprehension, to getting it. You can see her mind processing the command through her eyes. If you have never seen a dog do this - it is really a neat experience. They become human-like.

I will say the command and wait ... I'll look into her eyes and literally see her thinking - starring me back, her eyes-only looking to the right while the rest of her head is motionless, and then looking back to me, and then she'll move her head and look down, and her paw will bat the air and she will slowly (or quickly sometimes) go into a Down position. Had I talked after the first command was given, it would break her concentration and I'd pretty much be starting over; doubling the time for her to get it. I learned that rather quickly.

Then from a Down - I tell her to Sit - and because she knows that one like the back of her paw, she will pop her front legs up (keeping her rear and back legs down) into an awesome Sit. And then we are ready to do the routine again, and again, and again.

Today's adventure was to the New Home Construction Site down the trail from our neighborhood. While she was cautious over the Brand New Neonish Yellow Fire Hydrants (!!) she seemed okay about all the noise of saws, wood being thrown, and hammers. Men in hardhats, and a jogger, both went by - paying no attention to Haddie, and she paying no attention to them.

For "fun" I used the Down command after she had been sitting for awhile observing. She did it! And she stayed for a good two minutes before we moved on. Marking Haddie's success at every point, because I know there will be days ahead where success has flown out the window. She's bound to have her moments, and we'll just work through them. But until that moment - YAY TEAM HADDIE!!
Under and Out ...

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