This was our second week at Dog Training, having gone for the first time last week, and Joey did great!! There were less people in the class this week and I think that made a difference as there was more space for each dog. It also helped that I had some nice tasty treats for him.
We had done some practice during the week with him to get him to sit, but he wasn’t doing it consistently so I wasn’t sure whether he would ‘perform’ when we got to training – but I was pleasantly surprised and SUPER proud of him! It was like he has won gold at the Olympics…that’s how proud I was 🙂
Coco, on the other hand, didn’t have a very good week. She wasn’t keen to get in the van in the first place when we were leaving. It’s very unlike her, as she loves going out, but she wasn’t happy.
When we got to training she was even less happy! She growled and barked at every dog near her and wouldn’t take a treat at all. There was no sitting, no paw giving – nothing! She was having none of it. She was actually better the week before – but we will continue to stick with it and see how she gets on.
So what did we learn this week at Dog Training?
1. Take a BIG bag of treats that they love. Last week I had fed both dogs before we went, so although Joey took treats he wasn’t that fussed. This week he didn’t get his dinner before we went – so he was hungry for those treats!! Make sure you have a pocket to put the bag in. I even saw people with treat carriers clipped to them – which looks super handy.
2. Less is more. Last week there were a lot of dogs in the class, and while that seemed to work better for Coco, it did mean that you were on top of each other and it was hard to walk around at the right speed as some dogs were stopping and starting (including my own!). I also felt the trainer had a bit more time to spend answering specific questions or concerns.
3. Take Poo Bags. Dogs have to go…and sometimes they don’t wait or warn you.
4. Have Faith. As you can see from the picture, Joey has really mastered the art of sitting! So the next step was to get him to stay and let go of the lead and walk back. I must admit I was really nervous about this part, as I had visions of him running around the class and me not being able to catch him. But we gave it a try, and although I still had my foot on the end of the lead (just in case) he actually did really well. I only took 2 steps back – but I think for a dog that is only with us 2 weeks that’s a big achievement.
5. Only Reward Good Behaviour. This is the big thing that kept being said to us, that you should only reward your dog for being good. Have their attention at all times and praise them when they are being good. It was mentioned as well not to talk to your dog like a person – funny feeling that was directed at me when I was having a big chat with Joey about how great he was!! 🙂 Oh well – who knows …he could be the first dog to answer back and say thanks!
So it’s another week of practice with Joey and some time being spent with Coco to get her used to the idea of training. Maybe we should sit her down and have a chat with her!
Have you been taking your dog to training? Let us know!