Titles Achieved to date...

Monumental A to Z High On Liberty
NW1, RATI, RATN, RATO, NW2, L1I, RATS, L1E, L1C, L1V, L2C, L2I, L2E, RATM, R-FE/N, PKD-TL, PKD-N, ADPL1, ADPL2, TD, UWP, ADPL3, NTD, TKN, L2V, ADPL4, SDS-N, ADPL5, ADPCH, ADP1(2), ADPL1(GC), ADPL2(2), ADPL2(GC), VPN, AP, UWPCH, ADPL3(2), ADPL3(GC), NC, NI, NE, SCN, SIN, SEN, CZ8B, NV, NN, ADPL4(2), ADPL4(GC), ADPGCH, ADPL5(2), RATCH, CZ8S, AI, TKI, AV, AE, AC, AN, R-FE/X NW3-V, NW3-E, SI and RN, 64 and counting...




Saturday, November 26, 2011

Plan Change

Only a small part of this entry is about a change of plans, but I have to call it something...

This first video is our first session with many tins.  Overall Gimme did about as I expected.  Based on what I've been reading, I was intentionally letting her see me put the scented tin down.  However, in this particular session, I don't think it helped her.  The reason was, I think, my choice of treats.  I was using popcorn and she is just crazy about that stuff.  So I think the possibility of the popcorn was distracting enough that she wasn't focused - especially as compared to previous sessions.  So we won't make that mistake again, though I'll continue to use popcorn for other things.  I like having so many tins, since I don't have the non-rewarding aspect of not taking the tins when she brings them to me.


The second video is the second session today on "pivot" (the camera didn't record the first one).  Based on what I was seeing when I edited this video, I've decided to abandon training the rear pivot ("twist") until I have this on cue.  Then I will also probably go on to teach the forehand pivot in the other direction, which I'll name "tivo".  (chose that name because it uses letters that are in its companion behavior)  The thing I was seeing that got me thinking this way, was her tendency when frustrated or unsure to start putting her back feet on.  In the video there's a fair amount of bouncing back and forth between front and back feet.  Since I'm trying to teach her to use her front feet in a specific way during this behavior, it means I have to withhold clicks for what she may think is a good enough version.  When that happens, I don't want her just throwing some other behavior at me.  After "pivot" is on cue, I'll start on "tivo".  Then later after "tivo" is on cue, I can start the pivots on the rear ("twist" and "twirl).


Of course I hadn't really come to that decision until I did the editing of the pivot video, so I have this short video of the last (for now) session of "twist".  At times I think she is getting the idea and then I don't.  Since the camera angle provides a new perspective, I see two issues.  One, when I do resume training this, I really will have to put up the mirror so I can see that both back feet are on the brick.  Two, I think I also have to do a session or two of just rewarding her putting both back feet on, to get that behavior more solidly.  And three, I've got to do something about the brick sliding all over the place.  I have some scraps rubber shelf liner, so am going to glue that to the back of the brick, as well as some other platforms.  That way they will stay put and when I get this floor refinished, I won't have to worry about it being scratched. 


A confession:  I have had more difficulty with teaching Gimme to refrain from jumping on people than any dog I've ever owned or worked with.  Its clear in watching her that she really does try to be good and stay down, but then people start petting her and its more than she can handle, so she jumps up out of exuberance.  She really loves people, so I don't want to dampen her enthusiasm in teaching her to keep four on the floor.  Add to that the frustrating tendency for people replying to my instructions not to let her jump up with, "oh, its okay".  She's so dang cute that many people really encourage or, at the least, don't discourage her. 

I have friends that have worked with her, following my instructions, and it just doesn't seem to sink in.  This week I decided to try something a little different.  Given how quickly she learned to come to me when she sees bicycles, I'm taking the same tactic with people.  When she sees a person, I call her to me and give her treats until they pass.  Then if interaction is mutually desirable, I'm at least there to reward her when she has all four on the floor. 

What was so incredibly cool was seeing the light bulb go on - flashing brightly - when she realized, see people = go to mom.  The first time you could see the light, she ran up to and around a stranger, then looked at me and came running for goodies.  Then he wanted to pet her and she got lots of treats for four on the floor.  The next person she saw, she went running toward them, then stopped and looked back at me, then came running.  The same thing for the person after that.  My non-dog friend that was walking with me even recognized what she was seeing as Gimme "got it". 

She's such a smarty...  I love seeing her figure things out.

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