The adventures of SD Juno and SDIT Kaline (and their human, Colt).

28 July 2012

Saturday Obedience Class No. 2

Kaline did a lot better this week, I thought! Enough better that I could glance over and see what Juno and Dad were doing sometimes (but we, um, won't talk about that). It was kind of funny—Juno, when I first got her at 18 months old, could only handle 45 minutes of the hour-long obedience class. Today, when Kaline all of a sudden started losing focus and being like, “Oh, treats ... maybe later,” I checked my phone, and what do you know? It was 10:45.

But yeah, he largely was good. We started off with heeling, as usual. Kaline kept up nicely, and mostly stayed with me on turns. Freddie had everyone come through the middle of the circle multiple times, which Kaline had never done. It can be difficult, because you have all 10-15 dogs going through at the same time from different directions, so you not only have to keep your dog's attention with intensified distraction, you have to make sure he modifies his pace to stay with you, so you don't crash into anyone. Kaline did quite well. He air-scented, definitely, which is a no-no, but at this point I'm not all that freaked out about it. (With Junebug back in the day, you saw air-scenting, and two seconds later you'd have stink eye and probably some ugly growling.)

We also worked on the moving down, and again Kaline did fine. He was a tad rough at times, but I've never asked him to down suddenly by my side while we were walking. By rough, I mean he was slow to get all the way down; but as soon as I stopped and gave the cue, he stopped and started to fold himself. So yay.

Kaline did freaking awesome on remote sits and downs. Most of the time, I only have to give the cue—no stepping into him. And he didn't creep forward either! Wheeeeee, I always feel so accomplished on remote sits and downs. Not so accomplished when we're heeling and we halt and Kaline wanders around for a while and then sits way out and cockeyed.

We did individual recalls, and Kaline did all right. At this point, he'll give you three recalls or so, and then he's pretty much done. He didn't break at all when the other dogs were racing to their owners (or when his sister broke to run to Dad like five times). Of course, I didn't back too far away from him. Just trying to set the puppy up to succeed! Gotta know what he's capable of doing right now, and what is just too much to expect.

We did three meet-and-greets, and by the third one Kaline was able to stay in his sit while he was patted and given a treat by our partner. On the third one as well, we had to leave our dogs in down-stays and move around them—harder because the dogs were inches from each other and basically face-to-face.

Kaline was paired up with Max the beagle, and Kaline currently has a thing for beagles (they're about his size), so that was a challenge for him. And after the stay exercise, I had to leave him with my partner and go out of sight for three minutes or so. Thank goodness, Kaline has absolutely no problem with this. When Juno and I went for her CGC, the time when I had to leave her and go out of sight was the longest couple of minutes of my life! That was the one exercise where I thought she might fail (she didn't).

When I came back, my partner left, so I had to keep Kaline and Max both in their downs, which was definitely hard at first! They were like Whack-A-Moles, whenever one would go down, the other one would pop up. (Obviously there was no whacking.)

We went for a little snack at Paris Baguette in downtown Palo Alto after class. Kaline had some trouble holding his down by the table at the beginning, but eventually he settled down. I think once he has his own travel mat he'll do better. He reminds me so much of Angel! We couldn't figure out for the longest time why she'd never down outside, no matter how much we worked on it. Then the instructor told us to bring a towel for her to lie on, and voila! Successful downs all over the place. Gotta appease the Dobie comfort-seeking genes.

After napping in the afternoon, Juno and I did another double feature at the Stanford Theatre (Meet Me In St. Louis and The Secret Garden). We had a lovely time. Junebug unfortunately got some popcorn spilled on her at the concessions stand, but she didn't try to eat any of it, my fabulous girl.

At home, I was eating dinner on the couch, which Kaline has never seen. He was in full pest mode. Nose next to my plate, demand barking, etc. I just kept correcting him and then putting him into a down, and eventually he settled and lay down very nicely by my feet, not even looking at my plate. For this he was handsomely rewarded with random kibbles. Maybe I should eat on the couch more often.

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