Sunday, January 10, 2010

Week: 2

One down, fifty-one to go…

(As always, any image can be clicked on to see a larger version)

Accomplished Last Week:

Core Studies – I’m frustrated with the Pivot Right (Heeling). Beau already heels left and right turns with eye contact, and had both a left and right finish taught with luring. Not pretty, but serviceable. He hates this kind of shaping and we both are ready to just move on. Ended up working down-stay for distractions rather than time (via the Weekly Quizzes). We did no loose leash at all as weather was cold and gloomy. Will give it one more week, but the forecast is even worse. No work on attention (want to finish the Pivot Right first) but if we don’t get to it this week we’ll start to fall behind. Lots of work on Come, as it was on the Quiz, with distractions and the boys both performed beautifully.

Quiz results: Beau = 94%, Zachary = 87%. Still working on Quiz layout and format.

Citizenship – Total bust. Last week I had to admit defeat for the Rally class. It’s not that I don’t like Rally (I do) nor that Zachary doesn’t (he likes most anything where cookies are involved) – nope, it’s that I’m a thermal wimp and I just couldn’t drag myself out of my nice warm Snuggie (yes, I have one, I love it, so there) to go to a class in a freezing cold building at night.

Family Member – A bright spot in our course work. Zachary continues to get better about ears and paws. This week I added brushing, as believe it or not, I don’t ever brush him. His fur just doesn’t need it plus he’s at the groomer every 2 weeks. I used a clicker to mark good behavior and he got an “A” for the week. I also worked quite a bit on “thuds”, but still have a ways to go.

Extracurricular – Contacts: Christmas Tree didn’t leave until late in the week, and the rest of the xmas decorations are still working their way out of the house, so holding off bringing the board in. Practiced retrieve with a glove and both dogs will take it without problem. Now we need to work on the hold.

Just For Fun – A huge bright spot, as this turned out to be super easy for both dogs. They were throwing a crumpled up piece of paper into the wire basket in the first session, so I decided to add a plastic bottle to the mix. Neither is wild about picking it up (it “crinkles”) but are getting there. If all goes well I might try to have them “separate” the items – plastic in one and paper in the other.

Once again, the highlight of the week was the Quizzes. Just can’t say enough for how useful they are.

Released a Zachary video of Training Levels Three. You can see it here.

Planned for This Week:

Core Studies – Want to get Heeling done and videoed, so I can move on to Watch. Given how long it took to get Zachary to watch for just 10 seconds, I’m concerned that 30 could take forever. Loose Leash is dependent on weather, so it doesn’t look good. Added list of Quiz items here to make it
easier to track them, but generated a separate Quiz sheet as well (see right.)

Citizenship – Left everything as is was last week, but really need to rethink how I want to do this category. Not the contents, but the implementation.

Family Member – I’m hoping to finish up Grooming this week. “Thuds” and playing are long-term items, which will probably be on the list for weeks. Still need to buy new mats so I can work on Chill (Go to Mat).

Extracurricular – Hopefully get the board in the house. Keep going on gloves, working on the hold.

Just For Fun – Adding a plastic bottle – both are enjoying it.

Field Trip – (see comment about the weather)

As for the “blue bar” on the left side of the Worksheet – I’ve been working hard on “Extracurricular Activities” (one of the few parts of Zachary’s Canine Curriculum that is still in flux) and you should see something about that in the blog this week.

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