What it says on the box: Kaline finally got to participate (almost) fully in Saturday obedience class! I say almost because class started with teaching everyone to teach their dogs “hold” and “out.” Juno knows it already, and I'm not really starting that with Kaline yet. Plus, I have a different way of teaching it than what we do in class. So Kaline got to munch on a new pressed rawhide bone that Freddie gifted to him, and I tried to provide constructive criticism for my dad, who was working Juno. (I admit, I am not very good at this; I get easily grumpy when he doesn't do stuff exactly right with her.) She did fine, though.
After hold and out, we did some heeling exercises. Kaline did okay at these, but not great, because we haven't worked on formal heeling. So far I've been mostly focused on him walking with a loose leash, and either stopping or sitting when I stop. What we really need to focus on, other than him watching me while heeling (my holy grail!! Juno refuses to do this), is him turning with me.
Next we worked on remote sits and downs. Obviously with a baby puppy, I wasn't too remote, haha. But he did extremely well, I thought! He mostly kept his eyes on me, and never crept forward when I downed him from a sit, or moved his butt when I sat him from a down. I even got about 3 feet away while giving the hand signals! That was pretty exciting.
We did a bunch of partner work. First we walked at our partners and then called our dogs just before we were about to run into each other. Again, Kaline was so-so, but it was what I expected. We've been doing rudimentary recall work, but nothing like that. I'm shocked he wasn't more distracted and off in the clouds than he was. I got him back to me without too much trouble, but it's not like with experienced Juno, where when you say her name, her head whips around before you can even get “Come” out. Kaline's fronts were all over the place too.
Then we did meet and greets: First you walk past your partner shoulder to shoulder, then you walk past so the dogs are on the same side and have to do a big leave it, and finally you face each other within handshaking distance. You say hi to your partner, hi to their dog, but the dogs don't say hi to each other. Kaline was again rough on the heeling portion, but surprisingly he never got up from his sit to go to the other person or dog. So I figure, if we work on heeling as much as we've been working on sit, down, watch, and stay, he'll have it down pretty quickly, right?
Our last meet and greet had all kinds of silly stuff—unexpected turns, random down stays, stepping to various points around your dog, straddling your dog. I have trained a lot of dogs who really don't appreciate being stepped over and/or being straddled. Happily, Kaline is not one. He couldn't care less. (Tangent: I cannot stand it when people say “He could care less” as though it means the same thing as “He couldn't care less.” One makes sense, one doesn't! End tangent.)
Last, we did the long sits and downs. For the long sit, my row of handlers had to leave and go out of sight. I wasn't sure if I should go, since it was Kaline's first time, but Freddie told me to go, and Kaline was just fine. Just to be clear, when we left, the remaining row of handlers held our dogs—my puppy didn't hold an out-of-sight sit-stay on his own! Once he realized Claudio was going to feed him treats to continuing to sit, he didn't care that I was gone. I wonder what would've happened if both Juno and I left though. I worry he has separation anxiety regarding Juno!
The long sit was a minute, and the long down was three. I stayed with Kaline and Kaia for the long down, and again, they were both totally fine. Freddie said Kaline is a very good puppy. I was definitely really happy with how he did today, and I can't wait to get back next week! I think Dad and Juno did okay too. Then again, with Kaline to handle, I never had time to watch them!