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Saturday, July 5, 2014

More Special Bowl

For the last week we've been doing a bunch of extra walking to get caught up on our mileage goal.  Between walking and yard work, my knees have really been hurting.  So decided today we'd just do a training session outside.

I decided to get back to working on special bowl, which we haven't trained in almost six weeks.  I picked it up off the shelf and Gimme got really excited.  Clearly she remembered it.

Our training session wasn't anything special in what we worked on, but more about doing some little smidgen of obedience stuff and then releasing Gimme to special bowl.  I clearly need to do more obedience outside.  I wish I had set up the video camera.

I also wish I had planned more clearly what I was going to work on, instead of just noodling around.  Twice I put treats in the bowl and Gimme, initiated "yours" on her own right after I filled it, snagging the treats before I could interrupt her.  I think these were caused by lack of clarity on my part, but I was sure I'd damaged our training.  To make it clearer after that, I put her on a standing "wait" about six feet from the bowl as I walked over to drop treats in.  It didn't cause any lasting problem.

Then we'd do a simple exercise part and I'd click, then cue "yours".  On two occasions, Gimme decided she'd done enough and started to dash to special bowl without the cue.  I was able to interrupt her by calling her name.  Then we'd do something else, click and "yours".  After that she didn't try it again.  We've done training before where a container of treats was at nose level and she had to work for me to give her some, without self rewarding.  She has a really good work ethic and learned that lesson well, though we haven't done it in a long time.  I like special bowl better - I think its clearer.   So today was just part of her evolving understanding.  Clearly we have to work some more before she's ready to heel right by it. 

We also did a smidgen of personal play, followed by a release to special bowl.  I did figure out that I do use my body different when I'm pushing at her with my right hand.  I feel comfortable when I am doing the first push with my right hand.  But once we have started playing and she's moving too and could move unpredictably (potentially causing a finger jam), then I tense up and she changes too.  She reads me too well.  This will take time.

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