Thursday, April 23, 2009

Day two with Travis the lab

Thursday - my second day with my new foster dog

From Travis the Lab


Because Travis jumped out the four foot gated dog yard yesterday evening. I left him in his crate overnight. Unlike Bruce's first night where he barked and whined nearly all night Travis was very quiet and my sleep was not disturbed.

Heeling at my side

At about seven in the morning I went to Travis' crate and asked for a SIT. Then I waited until he sat and looked me in the eyes then I eye clicked and treated (Eye clicks are just a strong blink of both eyes as the dog is watching you.) Then I opened his crate door and stood in front of it. I blocked the opening and waited for Travis to sit. Once he did I slipped on his choke chain, asked for a sit, then clicked and let him walk out. As soon as he hit the end of the leash I stepped off fast in another direction. This is to teach him that I am the leader and that he need to kept track of where I am and what I am doing and follow me. As soon as he reached my left side I clicked and treated.

I walked again and once again he surged ahead and I changed direction. I kept this up until he was slowing down and paying more attention to where I was. I slipped his leash over a fence post and said, STAY and went to pull out the golf cart for our run. Travis barked and whined. I waited until he was quiet and sitting before approaching him and asking for a sit again before removing his leash from the fence.

Road Run

I had my two smaller dogs on the golf cart and ran Travis along side it. He is not a champion sled puller and it is easy to keep him from pulling ahead. He jogged along side the cart and I would click and stop and treat from time to time. Also I would stop the cart and walk him around asking for heel some too. Travis needs a lot of work on heeling. He kept wanting to just walk ahead and doesn't kept track I where I am. I have to keep changing direction. He will learn that it is just easier to walk with me. He is sitting faster and more consistently when I stop and ask for a sit.

Fetching the Ball

I stop and let him cool off in the pond -- in the shallow water along its edge as i still have him on a four foot lead. Back home play some fetch with him with a tennis ball which he loves. When he is excited he is a little mouthy and also holds on the ball a bit from time to time.

I place him back into his crate and feed him. Then I walk my dogs. Travis barks when we leave the yard, but his barking dies down quickly as soon as we are out of sight. In a couple of hours I placed Travis in his dog yard. He barked some when I left him but didn't climb out. He stayed in his yard until his evening fun.

Evening workout

Repeat of morning cart run along and stops at the pond to cool off and some heeling and sitting training. Then some ball tossing in my yard.

Meeting my two smaller dogs

I had my two little dogs loose in my yard while Travis played fetch. His energy level made my smallest dog, BooBoo nervous and she just stayed out of his way. Gigit who is about thirty pounds was less intimidated by him, but she does take a while before she is trusting enough of large dogs to play with them. With the ball around Travis doesn't give other dogs to much attention.

Travis has a good energy but is not over the top like Bruce. He will fit into more families since he doesn't require as much daily exercise as a hyper dog.

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