OT: Woo-hoo Ben

Ben had his first class today.  Of course, dog training classes are as much about training the owner(s) as they are about training the dog.  Sit, stay, come, sphinx, shake, and all that are no problem.  Loose leash walking is a problem, and we learned some good techniques for making that happen.

The trainer indicated that she thought he was much better than expected for a newbie.  Plus, the things that set him off are the same things that set off any other dog:  deer, squirrels, and geese.  I think we’ve learned how to handle that.  Other than our stance while stopping during his walks, we had it right.

She thought he might have some Shar-Pei in him.  The vet thought so, too.  He does have the Shar-Pei tail, ears, coat, and a few black spots on his tongue.  He doesn’t have the wrinkles.

I’m proud of Ben.  He performed admirably in a completely new setting.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to OT: Woo-hoo Ben

  1. Mad Hatter says:

    Our pack will begin training in the fall. We found a trainer that comes to our place and basically trains US to train THEM. We’re looking forward to it!

    • admin says:

      That’s pretty much the idea — train the humans to train the dog(s).

      I found it gratifying to know that nothing we’d been doing up until now was wrong. But . . . there is a faster way to accomplish our goals.

      One of the trainers at the SPCA will make house visits for private lessons, but we opted to go with the public classes for a couple of reasons. They’re a lot less expensive, but beyond that, it gives Ben an opportunity to socialize with other dogs and people in a controlled environment.

  2. Robin E. says:

    Socialization is so important! In my case I’ve seen so many people with small dogs who lunge at other people and other dogs, barking their little heads off. My Pedro used to be like that too, but the more we got him out and around other people and dogs, he has grown more comfortable. He walks on the leash better and keeps a steady gait, right on past others. And another thing, he’s used to people approaching him, especially children. He used to be so scared!

    I’m glad your classes are going well for you! I’m considering getting Pedro into some classes, although he does listen to commands already. It would be nice to see what else we can teach him.

    • admin says:

      I suspect that many owners of small dogs let them get away with shit they’d never tolerate from a big dog. That’s the owner’s fault, not the dog’s. Sure, let them be dogs, but don’t let them jump up on people, or snarl and lunge at them.

      A ~75 lb. golden jumped up on me yesterday. I gently pushed him away, and said “off.” He got it. The owner was mortified. I had to tell her “S’okay, no harm done.” I would have been pissed off if he had bitten me, but he was just enthusiastic, and his whole body language said “I want to meet you.”

  3. Robin E. says:

    Yeah, I think people treat small dogs like babies and do let them get away with bad behavior. But I’ve always had big dogs, Pedro being my first small dog, so we trained him the same and expect the same from him. Chihuahuas have a nasty reputation for nipping, and I do not tolerate it from him. He’s learned to be a good boy, especially around kids. He really has learned to tolerate small children, which is good because they often try to corner him and pick him up because they think he’s a puppy. I know of too many horror stories involving Chi’s biting children because of this. But Pedro is good around kids. Thank goodness!

    • admin says:

      He sounds like a cutie.

    • Mad Hatter says:

      My pack have never nipped, and I’d probably scare ’em out of their skins if they ever did. Our main problem is housebreaking and coming when called (as opposed to “I’m coming, Mom.. I’m coming… Ooo, a bird! No, I’m coming.. oo, a blade of grass! etc. etc.)

      • admin says:

        You’re lucky. Ben will nip at my ankles, or knees, when he gets excited. He’s getting over that, though. Cowboy boots help. Yeah, yeah, laugh, but they are effective.

  4. admin says:

    This is almost a dead ringer for Ben:

    The tail needs to be bushier and curl over, but otherwise . . .

  5. Robin E. says:

    That’s a good looking dog! I wish I had a big dog again. But it’s easier for us to keep the yard clean and intact with our little boy. He doesn’t leave mountainous presents for us, if you know what I mean, wink wink…

    • admin says:

      Bigger dogs leave bigger “presents.” TRUFAX! Still, he’s smaller than your average St. Bernard, and he’s gotten used to taking his dumps in the woods. He can whiz all over the lawn for all we care; it seems to make the deer move along a little faster, and not stop to munch on my roses or fruit trees.

      The more I read about “traditional bone-mouth” Shar-Peis, the more it seems to fit our guy. Looks, fearless behavior . . . everything. He’s a mutt, but there’s no way he doesn’t have some Shar-Pei in him.

      After just one training session, he’s gotten a lot better about “loose leash.” Yay!

  6. khkoehler says:

    My rott operates on only one gear: give him food and he’ll do anything you want.

    • admin says:

      Next time I want to sneak into your house, I’ll bring a ham sammie. Or some cheese.

      • khkoehler says:

        😀 If you gave him a ham sammy he’d not only let you in, he’d lead you to the loot. He’s a 147 lbs. of goofball with an eating obsession. If I didn’t control his diet somewhat, he’d be a boat!

  7. Mac campbell says:

    Perhaps if he does well enough, he can do agility. I have a wopper of a dog (newf mixed with something). He loved nothing better than jumping through hoops, even at 120 lbs. He’s close to 12 now, and hills on a warm day are very difficult. But in his head he can still jump through hoops!

    • admin says:

      I love Newfies. Big. Bold. Slobber. Other than the slobber, they’re fine. 12 is fairly old for a Newfie. He’s a lucky dog.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.