Workshop report

Scoop table me crop

Scoop table cropped

I try to put Scoop on the table at least a few times a week to get groomed whether he needs it or not. The first picture looks like I am getting the stink eye, but actually he always shows a bit more white on that eye, funny:) Now you can really see how big he is.

Scoop and I survived an all day foundation and groundwork seminar last Sunday. Unbelievably Scoop pretty much worked as a demo dog all day. I kept waiting for him to say he was tired, or to not want to play with me, or forget some of his skills, but he didn’t. He was almost perfect! Well, jumping out of the 18 inch high X-pen a few times wasn’t what I wanted everyone to see, but if that’s the worst he’s got I will take it. Scoop has never really trained indoors before, other than in private homes. We were in a small doggie day care center with matted floors, and 20+ people sitting around, and he never missed a beat responding to cues, total attention and great tug and retrieve. One thing that Scoop could really not cope with was me working Ace with him in his cage. So, I decided it was easier just to use him, rather than listen to him whine in another room while Ace tried to work. Really gotta work on that!

One thing I covered when I discussed retrieving with the group which I think is important, if I send Scoop to a toy from my left side I expect him to turn to the right as he picks up his toy, like this diagram. I really don’t want him to turn away from me every time I toss a toy. Some dogs turn their favorite direction because they are just patterned to do so, others turn in a way that is more physically comfortable. For whatever the reason, I don’t want him to turn away from me. If I throw the toy a really long distance to my dogs I don’t pay attention to this, but on close retrieves or during training I do watch which way they turn. If they turn away I take a little step towards the toy, sort of shaping the pickup for a while until they always turn  back to me.


toy pickup

Scoop is a circus dog now. He loves to stand on his little stools, we don’t really train it very much, but he thinks it is fun to use them both.

This is a short post, lots of REAL work to get done tonight. Hope you keep balancing your training skills with your pup, as much as I try to with mine.




5 responses

  1. Several of my students attended your puppy seminar with their young dogs. They had such a great time and came back totally pumped! Thanks so much for sharing your insights with the rest of us.

  2. I am making copies of your blog, putting them into a binder and taking them to my training building so my students can have an opportunity to read them. I love your training of Scoop and have started using them with Fly my 7 month BC. And I had a Manners Minder that I had not used. When I saw how you were using yours I pulled it out and discovered hundreds of new uses for it. Keep up the blog! It’s great!

  3. I love the stools! I’ve taught my dogs to get into a box. I think it helps with balance as the box gets smaller. I should say–Tika taught Boost how to get into a box. Because the first time I did it with either of them, I worked on Tika first, until she was actually in the box. When I released Boost, she ran across the room and jumped into the box. I must say I’m loving how smart and creative border collies are, like Scoop climbing onto buckets/etc. Goes to show that, the more things are available in their environment, the more they learn.

  4. Thanks for writing such an informative blog. I read lots of things in your blog that I haven’t seen anywhere else.
    Oh, btw, your puppy is adorable 🙂

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