Monday, October 4, 2010

Another longer walk & ideas for Gundog Training.

 Whooo, 71 degrees again! Today we took the longer walk at 1.30 PM, as I also have our old dog Cedric to walk today. So this morning I took them out together for a 15-minute trip.

Her harness is still too small, I think. The belly band is right behind her elbows and ideally, I should be able to fit my flat hand between her elbow and the belly band. Hmm. Not sure what I’m gonna do about that yet. I could buy a new harness, one size up for the neck-part and then the same size as the belly band is now, or a different one altogether. Anyways...

I also had an aha! moment while drying the dishes; I don’t need to teach Luna about difficult retrieves, I need to teach her that she can TRUST me that when I say, there’s a bumper out there, it’s really there. I can do that by making sure she can ALWAYS SEE the bumper from where I send her to go get it. So I either work on totally flat land/concrete, or I put a white sock around the bumper.

This way, I CAN add distance, but I most importantly make sure that Luna learns she can really go out when I tell her to. She needs to BELIEVE that when I say Go, she’ll find a bumper.

Success criteria will be; as long as she finds the bumper without needing my help, that’s a pass. The faster the better, but if she doesn’t need me, that’s a pass. IF she AT ANY POINT FAILS to get the bumper ON THE FIRST SEND, that means she needs MORE practice with bumpers she CAN find immediately.

There. Yay me!

The picture is of last winter, during a Gundog Training Week on one of the Dutch islands, Ameland. It was freezing cold, but SO much fun! This was the first time Luna happily retrieved anything other than a ball. Look how proud she is! By the way, we're going again next January, only this time we'll be prepared!

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