Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Sidewalk Walk

So, it has been 11 days of tummy trouble for Kolby and we are finally back to happy!! The social outings have been a little dampened during this time while we waited patiently for his belly to figure out how to get back to normal. With the help of CCI Vet Clinic, our fabulous Trainer, and our amazing personal vet, Kolby has the correct meds and the trouble disappeared instantly. Aaaamazing.  
Today I had plans for a store-outing, something like a Drug Store or just one section of a toy store at a big box chain. But as the sun was actually glimmering behind thin clouds, I dumped the interior walk-about for some fresh air. Finally. Fresh air without dodging raindrops.
We walked about 45 minutes on the sidewalks of a new strip mall in our town. It was quiet. The concentration was on moving vehicles, the noises of nature, all-things-litter (man, there are a lot of scraps of junk e.v.e.r.y.w.h.e.r.e - things you don't notice unless you are puppy training), variance in surfaces, and keeping pace with a loose leash.

I had mixed up the Wait command with Haddie - using it more as a Stay or don't move command, when in actuality, according to our region's trainer, it is a command that makes the pup not move past a threshold. Whereas Stay is where the legs can not move. The implied Stay for Sit is all four feet need to be planted. The implied Stay for Down is that the forearms shall not lift off the ground.
To tell your pup to Wait, it means that you do not want them to move to the next room - but they are free to move about the room you expect them to remain in. I am still learning how to train this one. It is slow goings, but I am determined Kolby will know the correct command of Wait.

I was using Wait for Haddie instead of the "Leave It" command. Wait for her food, Wait to eat a treat, Wait before fetching her ball. All of those are actually Leave It's.
So today I worked on Leave It with Kolby and litter. He was amazing (only because we worked on Leave It last week with kibble on the floor, on my lap, on my hand, on his toes, on the chair - yeah, we were home a lot last week). Kolby gets Leave It at our house, I'm glad to see him transfer it to the real world this morning. Notice he is sitting on the chocolate wrapper we found littered on the sidewalk. That's one way to do it, Kolby, just sit on it!

Our crosswalks have bump-circles that protrude out from the cement and creat a great surface for Kolby to walk on. He was just fine. And he sat on this bumpy surface too and waited for his reward.
Shopping carts, rolling doors, huge trucks, high pitched machinery, and a jet black crow that cawed obnoxiously were all sounds that Kolby took pause to hear and observe, but was fine to continue after he had a chance to watch. He is so adorable. Hear a noise? He will Sit and observe. Reminds me of a wise-old-man. Just sit and watch the world; taking it all in. Better than the flip side of flipping out.

I think one of the things that I am not used to is Kolby's lack of Hurry while in public. I will command, and offer him every opportunity to get this accomplished, and he has no interest. That part makes me nervous to venture into stores. A dog that goes because you said, even if they don't feel like they really gotta, is a dream. I had one of those last time (wink). You say the word and she would do it. Every. Single. Time. and. Quickly!!

I enjoyed my fresh air quiet sidewalk walk with Kolby. He is full of cute expressions that make the morning start so perfectly.  I enjoy seeing life through his young eyes.


  1. You have such an adorable puppy. Love hearing about his adventures.

    Axel is a pro at leave it. He lays his head down on his paws and looks longingly at whatever we've told him "leave it" for. But, he hasn't quite figured out the release command. Still thinks we're trying to trick him out of leaving it and he will not budge. Troy on the other hand, is not so good at leave it, but he snaps to attention with release and gobbles the treat up. So funny how they can be trained the same and are totally different!

  2. Totally true!! Dogs are like kiddos, you can raise the same but they have different personalities and abilities. I didn't realize this until raising Kolby, and trying so hard not to compare against Haddie, but it is just natural to see the differences. Axel - what a cutie!! Yes, Release is a hard command, Kolby doesn't really get it either. Haddie was a Troy. =)