November 10th, 2019

Baying

Theo Goes to Dog School

He found it very exciting, and also exhausting.  There were two other puppies in his class, a Labrador and a Springer spaniel, plus one older dog who was attending because he pulled on the lead.  We met more puppies coming for the second hourly class as we left, too, so that was very exciting for him too.   

The Springer, a month younger than Theo, was very obviously fearful, and barked defensively at all the other dogs and the trainer's small child who was with her (due to lack of babysitter. Just over 1 year old, and very dog-friendly!).  But he warmed up over the course of the class and by the end he and Theo were playbowing at one another.

Theo did very well.   I had forgotten just how often you need to reward when you are starting out training — I've got out of the habit with Rosie, who will rarely take any food rewards.  Theo does not have that problem.  But I rather fear that any food rewards will be considered less of a draw than hunting, when he is a little older.  He already finds squirrels quite unbearably exciting, and has caught no less than three mice in the garden!   

He's got the hang of asking to go out when he needs to, and sleeping through the night in his crate now, so I am no longer sleeping on the sofa and popping out with him for hourly pee breaks, which is a relief.