Thursday, 26 January 2012

Doggy School

It'll be a week tomorrow since we saw Goose was looking for a home and brought him in to our lives and it's pretty flown past.


Getting back into the rhythm of getting up and out with the dog first thing in the morning has been good, unlike the weather. Gales and rain aren't the best for walking a distracted nervous dog. Rattles, bangs, ponies, lights, workmen and machines.  Everything's new to him, so that combined with his teenage puppy energy has made being out and about a challenge at times, but Goose has been getting better on his walks each day.


It's not all hard work though. He's lovely and friendly and a pleasure to have in the house. He loves playing games inside and out, but keeps sniffing at rabbit holes and dropping his balls in them.


Last night I took him to the dog club at The Shetland Marts (at the time of writing it's 7pm on a Wednesday, bring your vaccination card and £2.50). 


That was an experience! 20 or so dogs (and people) of all ages, breeds and temperaments, in addition to a couple of people in hi-vis jackets!  He was wild with nervous excitement when we went in. I nearly burst out laughing when I was asked to fill in a form at the same time as I was hanging on to him with both hands and a prayer. Thankfully someone offered to hold him while I did it and he soon got used to the fact that there are more dogs in the world than him and they really aren't that interested in him. Still, walking to heel in a circle with halts, sits and turns with all the sniffing to be done was a massive distraction to him and had me wondering whether just to sit on the side and let him get it out his system rather than pretend I was training him to heel.


Anyway when it came to sit/stay/recall he was an absolute star for a change. I stood there willing some one to see how brilliant he was being and comment on it after the previous chaos, but unfortunately they were all too busy correcting their miscreant mutts!


My whole body was sore and aching by the time I got home. NOT how to train a dog, but good socialisation. And it paid off. This morning on his walk around various parts of Scalloway he was much less spooked and hardly blinked when a man in a hi-vis jacket went by. Despite my concerns that last nights tugs-o-war would have undone all the hard work we've been putting in with walking on the lead he even seems more settled with that too.


This evening we had a laugh to doing some clicker training in the house with sit, down, stay etc. He's really good at them but once he was 'down' he was too lazy to get back up to a sit. I tried lots of ways to motivate him to get up, some worked, eventually I remembered he had been trained to do 'High 5'. He'd have to sit up from 'down' to do that! The first couple of times he did. Good Goose! The next time he just lay on his side and lazily wagged a paw in my general direction. Lazy boy Goose time to stop LOL!!!

3 comments:

  1. Goose sounds lovely. What happened to Fern?

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  2. Sadly fern had to be put down back in October, she'd had a good innings though at around 14. Doubly sad, Goose has now gone back to his original family for various reasons...

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  3. Really sorry to hear about Fern (I have a lurcher too which is why I remembered her). Sad to hear about Goose too - but I'm sure that the right dog for your family will come along, and hopefully Goose will find his forever home too.

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