Hot Stuff!!

30 Nov

Eh?? What do you mean??

This is the 2nd installment of the training lessons I had with Jeremy Organ, Spaniel Officionado and all around nice guy!! It took place back in what we Brits laughingly called our ” summer”!!! This must have been the only hot day we had this year!!!

Rudy, Rio and I  arrived a few minutes early for our second lesson so we  sat in the boot of the car (well the dogs were in the boot , I was perched precariously on the edge! )  Whilst we sat and waited for Jeremy, Rudy had a great time watching the prize chickens in their coup again but at least we had no re enactment of last time!!!!

Chicken run!!

Jeremy came out to greet us and we decided  as it was so hot ( !! ) we would take them both through to the paddock together, so true to form they pulled a la husky through to the field with me practically horizontal behind !!
Well I did explain to Jeremy that I haven’t mastered 2 at a time yet!!! Unless it’s a 2 finger Kit Kat that is!!
Anyway we walked past a beautiful litter of 7 week old Springers Spaniels that Jeremy had bred and I thought that their training would probably start very soon!!! And how amazing they would no doubt end up..perfectly in tune with their owner, obedient and eager to please!!! At that point Rudy cocked his leg on Jeremy’s favourite tree as Rio lunged forward pulling me off balance for the hundredth time!!!
It was really hot which I’m sure had a positive effect on the dogs as they were both too hot to mess around too much!!!
We started with 1 dog each doing heel work. So I would walk forward with 1 dog and as soon as he started to pull against me I jerked the lead sharply, released and changed direction by 90 degrees. I continued  walking and every time there is tension on the lead you snatch the lead, release and change direction. The dog soon begins to grasp that if they walk calmly without pulling they are rewarded with a loose lead and no pressure. When they pull it feels uncomfortable for them and the fact that you change direction means the dogs really have to listen to you and be aware of your body language to know where you are heading and when.
Also every time you stop the dog is meant to sit immediately..something Rudy finds especially challenging!!!
Jeremy was suitably impressed with their improvement.YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  They were both really good individually so Jeremy decided the time had come to try them together!! Aarggh!!! Could I do this?? Would they go into “husky” mode? Would I fall over has been known?? I got hotter and hotter with fear and trepidation, my face ablaze , my hands clammy!!!
 However they were pretty restrained and again it all went quite well. Not as good as on their own but no Mary Poppins moments with me flying through the air, arms akimbo!!! We practised for around 10 minutes which was plenty both for Rudy and Rio and me!! I don’t know who had to concentrate more!! The dogs having to do as they were told or me having to remember a kind tone of voice and no shouting!!
We headed back into the paddock for a well earned drink ( The dogs I hasten to add, unfortunately Jeremy hadn’t chilled a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc for me!! ( selfish I thought!!)
After a short break Jeremy said we should do some recall work. He kept Rio on the lead and I let Rudy off so he was free to roam around the enclosed paddock. I then had to call him back. This started well and after quite a few successful efforts we added a new dimension. At a given point in the recall I had to try to make Rudy sit. Well I would release Rudy, let him get engrossed in sniffing around then call him. So far so good. I then bellowed ” sit” and held my hand up palm facing him ( the sit sign) and hoped for the best!! Rudy just looked slighty mystified and happily came right back to me!! Hmm this was going to be interesting!!

” SIT”…….please!!

It was a similar story with Rio although he did seem to pick things up a bit quicker and I started to feel like I was making some progress.
In between each lesson I have to practise every day which I either incorporate into our walks or in separate shorter sessions. I think this could take quite some time but it’s all good fun!!!

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