Monday, February 25, 2008

I Am Walter's Father: Day 1 - The Training Begins

Training the dogs is just as much about training the people. It's hard to change our habits. For example, I don't enjoy getting up at 5am to go on the morning walk. Have to, though, since neither of us can train Hannah and Walter together - at least, not yet.
The hardest things for me have to do with the things I say, and when I say them. For example:
  • Don't issue a command unless I can back it up;
  • Don't overuse their names;
  • Don't say "good dog" when they're just being dogs - say it when they do something specifically good.
Both of them are already getting better at not pulling, but that's not the big problem we need to address.Walter and Hannah At Work
I had my first look at Walter's tasty-jogger attacks: he takes growling, snapping leaps at joggers, like they're prey. He's already 60 lb, and not getting weaker! That said, Walter hasn't got a chance to pull me off balance - unlike Kath* - so his leap ended mid-air with an ungainly flip and an embarrassing landing. (I had already moved him out of range of the jogger.) That's a behaviour that will change, and fast.
They're still pretty, though!
*Yes, you can read that two ways. Funny, that.

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