Yoshi Training Diary - May 2006

By Ellen Clary
(reverse date order)

Feedback is welcome:

[off to Mt Shasta]

Sat May 20
Elizabeth headed off today for the last day of the Corgi specialty - they're going to be leaving directly from there to Fresno so we won't see her till Sept.  As a parting scene she got to see him way obsessing on a squirrel in a tree.  In a very nice, but whistful way she said: "Yoshi you're evil."  (meaning obsessive.)  I think she's sometimes concerned what the Prozac Kids have done to her reputation.  But on the other hand, she's very encouraged to see that his focus is much better so there's always hope.  I also showed her my version of the Premack Principal where I recall him away from squirrel chasing and as a reward release him to go to more squirrel chasing "Get that squirrel."  I should note that the squirrels are always in the trees and not on the ground.

Fri May 19
We went down to watch obedience at the Corgi specialty and say hello to folks.  Yoshi did fairly well though he was a bit barky at certain dogs even though they were corgis (which is slightly worrisome)  It's hard to tell sometimes if he's getting worse or better as I've gotten pretty god at managing him.  Rebecca has a young pem female that he seems to like though it might have been that she had just come out of season and smelled interesting.

Rosie was entered and she decided to be very creative this time to Patricia's consternation/amusment.

Mark, Jan and Cooper came over for dinner and the six humans had a marvelous time having a rather wild conversation that spanned many odd topics such as dog shows, jewelry, food, and the winner for the oddest: the weird mechanics of artificial insemination of large livestock,   Meanwhile Yoshi and Cooper had a marvelous time getting completely filthy in the back yard and then carrying in the dirt into the house (even after a toweling off.)

Later on (that night and the next morning) I showed Elizabeth the videos of Yoshi not herding.  She thinks it won't be easy but that he might switch on to it eventually.  I explained that my interest in it was giving him a more appropriate way to express his instincts rather that chasing Rottweilers.

Wed May 17
I have to decide whether to go to obedience class tonight.  I really should finish up my weight workout and I'm only about 1/3 of the way through it, and we have Elizabeth and Theo coming tonight and I'm meeting Pierre for lunch and before that I need to let Jesse out to go pee.

Tue May 16
Agility class.  What a good boy!  And what a surprise.  We haven't been to class for a bit so I wasn't sure how he'd do.  Well for being fairly new at sequencing he's doing great.  We worked on lateral movements between jumps which is somewhat new to him and we need to do more work on it though he did surprisingly well.  With tunnels I need to remember not to fade to the other side before he's commited to the side that I want him to take (in other words - run right at the tunnel entrance.)  He had some trouble with right handed weave poles though left handed ones he did all 12 which surprised me as there were no guides on them at all.  Very little trouble with start line until I led out quite far and he started getting distracted by the other dogs.

All his contacts look great.  He runs right off the A-Frame and dogwalk right through the yellow.  Teeter is ok too.

Cathy and Jesse joined our class.  Jesse jumps very well and did great for her first time taking a class in the evening, though once she heard something up in the brush above and clearly was thinking of checking it out, but Cathy got her attention back and they were fine.

I really haven't spent much time teaching him "out," but I've started using it in context and he seems to get it.  Probably because scurrying out of the way comes so naturally for him. ;)  I use it when I'm sliding over laterally from one jump to the next and I want him to stay on the other side of the 2nd jump.  What was cool is that I made a mistake and said "here" instead of "out" and he came right to me in between the jumps   (Good dog.)  We did it again with me saying "out" and it worked great.

He's also getting a lot better about the other dogs in the class.  Either he's growing up, he's getting used to them, or Jesse is a calming influence or some combination of it.  He growled a little at Rebel, Caren's the friendly, pushy Aussie which was most likely justified, and didn't like a flat coat (big black dog) that was owned by Jake's mom and that Yoshi hasn't had a chance to meet.

Funny moment was we were running a course and were all the way over at the far end of the ring when I sensed some unusual commotion where folks congragate, but I was busy with the run.  When we were done Caren tells me that Rebel swiped Yoshi's half bagette (that we use as a tug toy) and got about half of it eaten before it was wrestled away from him.  Rebel seemed quite pleased with himself and was extraordinarily friendly for the rest of the class.  Caren was asking where I got it so she could get us another one.  "Er, it's a stale baguette - most anywhere will do."

Mon May 15
Been back from Alaksa for a few days, but haven't done much training.
Some notes.  He had a blast at Cooper's house and Mark even occasionally got Cooper out of the room and had Yoshi do "poke" the ball for a bit.  (Cooper has no fear of the ball so if he thinks treats are in the offering for ball wacking he's so there.)
They are starting to mellow out ever so slowly.  What's interesting is that this appears to be happening to Yoshi (who's 3 months younger) first.

At lunch I went to do Yoshi's nails, but sure enough the batteries are discharged and I didn't want to hassle with the corded model so maybe tonight sometime.  Worked very briefly on weavepoles and I tried to click the opening and then continue but these days stopping him to treat him seems to mess him up more (we quit as soon as he did it successfully but then when walking back he did another set).  When I had him do the whole set then he did great.  So I think if I want him to do fewer poles then I should remove poles instead (e.g. 3 or 4 poles or 6 or 10 or 12.

Sun May 14
Pierre was over visiting from Tenn.  Yoshi was not happy about it at all and would go right up to him and growl and bark like he does with dogs he doesn't know.  We gave Pierre some toast pieces to give to Yoshi and the savage beast appeared to be mollified.  I think from now on first meetings should occur outside on semi neutral territory.  It was interesting to see him treat Pierre like he treats dogs he doesn't know, but yet he doesn't do this with sheep, goats or ducks.  I suppose I could put that behavior on cue but it's not like I'd ever want it as it's not necessarily what you want in herding either.

[Break for an Alaska Trip]

Go to:

Yoshi Training Diary - Apr 2006
Yoshi Training Diary - Mar 2006
Yoshi Training Diary - Feb 2006
Yoshi Training Diary - Jan 2006

Yoshi Training Diary - Dec 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Nov 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Oct 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Sept 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Aug 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Jul 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Jun 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - May 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Apr 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Mar 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Feb 2005
Yoshi Training Diary - Jan  2005

Yoshi Training Diary - Dec 2004
Yoshi Training Diary - Nov 2004
Yoshi Training Diary - Oct 2004
Yoshi Training Diary - Sep 2004
Yoshi Training Diary - Aug 2004
Yoshi Training Diary - July 2004
Yoshi Training Diary - Jun 2004
Yoshi Training Diary - May 2004
Yoshi Training Diary - Apr 2004

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