Where’s MY treat?

Went to our first training class with Champ, the 75 lb lap dog, this morning. Awesome instructor. We think Champ had some training before he became a stray and then remanded to the county animal shelter. He responds to a few simple commands, doesn’t pull unless there is a worthwhile sniff to be had nearby, and knows enough to pull the blanket off a sleeping 5 yr old boy to wake him up. We’ve heard/seen bits and pieces about obedience training through literature from the shelter, online, and a variety of friends who have gone through it themselves. Now let’s be frank. Obedience training is not about training the dog. Its about training the owner. Except the dog gets the treats.

I’m exhausted. Walking around a small rectangular track holding chunks of treats to get and keep Champ’s attention for an hour was more tiring than I thought. He did a pretty good job. We even got him to walk past her two dogs without making a sound or lunging at them. He caught on quickly. I’d learn quickly too if someone led me around dangling a hot fudge sundae in front of my face! It was kind of funny because the trainer caught herself saying “good girl Joni, good girl!” when I’d get Champ to do something the right way. I felt so proud. But still, no treats for me.

The kids did an amazing job sitting and watching the whole thing. After class, they decided to run the dog agility course a few times. JD especially mastered the ramps but Annaliese had trouble with the jumps. Maddie did great through the weave poles. We oughta get us some of these. According to weave-poles.com, it’d probably cost less than a giant backyard play set and be much easier to assemble!

We have a few things to practice for next week but for now we’re giving me Champ a rest. I swear at one point I could hear him say, “if I never see another chunk of hot dog…” Yeah Champ. Me too.

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Heh – Maybe next time you will be deserving of a treat.
    And maybe after a couple more sessions he will have you trained to feed him treats from the comfort of your lounge chair! 🙂

    Reply

  2. Posted by preston on July 27, 2008 at 10:10 am

    what a great story! if you’re interested in translating what champ has to say about the whole experience we’d love to have you as a contributor to our blog. we’re hoping to assemble lots of doggie stories told by the dogs themselves. it’s a brand new project! thanks for checking us! preston and gromit

    Reply

  3. As a hobby dog trainer, I have to say Good Girl! for bringing your new family member to a training center. Let me just say that you are teaching the dog way more than how to walk on a leash and be polite in public. You are teaching him he has a place in your family, that some one is in charge; someone he can trust and have confidence in. You are teaching him that he is loved and valued as a pack member. Now let him teach you about unconditional love, loyalty, friendship, worship, respect and honor.

    Reply

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