Sunday, May 25, 2014

It's been a long time

We've still be working on the dogs but it has taken us away from the computer and what can I say, I've never been good at keeping a habit.

While we've been away Isis has gotten over her fear of cars, Jinx has destroyed 2 of her toys and Kratos turned 7 years old. Hopefully, we'll have more time to post.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Training Session- Isis

Training Sessions 
Date: 7-14-13 & 7-15-13
Area: Hotel Room between the beds

Go to Place- Shaping onto her blanket 
Misses: 0
Time Spent: 2:32
Misses: 1 (laid down beside her blanket. Gave "Try Again")
Time Spent: 0:39
Total Time: 00:03:18

Muzzle Work- for duration and movement 
Reps: 37
Misses: 2 (Pawed once, rubbed muzzle on bed 2nd time: Both redirected easy)

Friday, July 5, 2013

How To Keep Yourself Calm

Isis (left Boxer), Jinx (right Boxer) and Kratos at the hotel.
While Isis has been taking this hotel detour with more grace then I would expect from her, we still have been working on keeping her calm. But what happens when you aren't calm? Perhaps you are like me and have an anxiety problem or maybe you're "once bitten twice shy" type. Whatever your reason, one thing is for sure. We need to control our anxieties just as much as our dogs.

So, when you feel the anxiety start to build in yourself, what do you do?

1. Sing a song and make it funny!
I promise your dog won't judge your singing voice. Singing requires your breath to be even and smooth which in turn will keep you from hyperventilating. Below are Isis' and Jinx's songs that I sing to them.

Isis' Song is set to the tune of 'Mary had a little lamb' & Jinx's Song is set to the 'Flintstone Theme'

"Isis is a bad dog,                       "Doodle, doodle doodle, she's a very bad dog she is.
bad dog, bad dog                       From the bed to the park down by the street.
Isis is a bad dog.                         She's the baddest dog you'll ever met."
Why? oh why bad dog?

Bad dog likes her chicken.
Her chicken, her chicken.
Bad dog likes her chicken.
Why? oh why bad dog?"

2. Use Code Words.
It's fun, you'll know if something is coming your way and so "oh shit"doesn't mean everything from a car flying towards you to a loose dog.

If you go for walks with other people, get them used to "Code words" for different scenarios but use ones that aren't alarming to the dog. For us, "Free Spirit(s)" = loose dog(s), "Sassafras" = Panic, too many triggers, get dog out of situation. "Hunters" = people, "Convoy" = cars

3. The "Tense & Relax"
The tense and relax is what I personally use to calm down if I am beyond over threshold. I wouldn't do this with a dog that is really sensitive to the leash but Isis doesn't mind. What you are going to do is hold your breath for 10 seconds. While you're holding your breath simultaneously tense every single muscle in your body. After, the 10 seconds slowly let out that breath while relaxing your muscles. You'll find this usually only takes once for your body to calm down. Still a little anxious? Try it again.

Have another method for calming yourself down? I'd love to hear it. Not all methods work with everybody but they can sure help.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Training Calender for Isis' & Jinx's Training

My family is quite wonderful with allowing me to keep these two Boxers even though they have successfully turned our lives upside down. Now, my mother and brother are surprisingly much much more organized then I am. So, I naturally asked the for help when it came to making a schedule that I could use for Isis and Jinx. The calender is based off of a month with two separate sessions in the day. The first two weeks are for training each behavior while the last two weeks are for testing the dog's understanding of said behavior. The behaviors represented in the calender are based off of Sue Ailsby's New Training Levels. (Found for sale: Here) along with others that I'm using to curb and help Isis/ Jinx cope with their respective triggers. The links to those behaviors are also placed within the calender.

Now, all I ask is that this is used for personal use only and not for profit. I hope it helps anybody that is willing to use it. Below is a link to the PDF version. Have fun training!!

Training Calender-PDF Version

Monday, June 24, 2013

Training Goals for Kratos This Summer (2013)

I’m just sitting here thinking about my training goals for Kratos this summer. I really want to set some concrete goals for this year even though not all of them will get done within the summer. It's just making me really really want to be in the new house. 
Here’s what I’m hoping will be accomplished with Kratos this summer:
  • Heeling-  Kratos is working on earning his Rally-o title and our CGC. Kratos is relatively good at staying close to me when regularly walking. He tends to lag behind or pull away from me if we walk too long.
  • Attention Work - I never really worked on attention with Kratos. I don't know why to be quite honest. I figure if we are going to work on his titles I might as well work on his attention to me while I'm doing it.
  • Front/Finish- Kratos is very very respectful of space. He already know front but it's about 2 ft away and if I'm leaning forward it can be upward of 5. So, I'll be cleaning that up and getting him to realize "front" is a perfectly good reason to invade my space. Finish just needs some cleaning up as well.
  • Moving Down- Kratos hasn't learned that yet so this should be good. He knows down at a distance and he knows recall so it shouldn't be hard to combine the two.
  • Nose Work - I'm going to be working with the 3 pups on Birch plus it will give them something to do and entertain their minds. Kratos know blood trailing and he knows shed hunting so it will be fun.
  • Go To Place - I'll be working on distance and speed for Kratos. He has an incredible place when distractions are added but he is a Mastiff so speed is slow and our distance from the mat slows him down even further.
  • Recall - Competition style of course!! And working on it in real life recalls as always. I never stop training my recalls
  • Off-leash work- I haven't been working on any off-leash stuff with Kratos because it makes my brother very nervous. Now, that Kratos lives with me and not with my brother. I've decided to start working on it so that I can take Kratos on off-leash hiking.
  • Some Weird Issue That Will Suddenly Develop - Kratos has had a good 6 years without serious problems. I doubt he will develop any serious odd issues.

Please Share
What your training goals are for the summer. Do you have an issue that you are struggling through too?

Friday, June 21, 2013

Training Goals for Jinx This Summer (2013)

I’m just sitting here thinking about my training goals for Jinx this summer. I really want to set some concrete goals for this year even though not all of them will get done within the summer. It's just making me really really want to be in the new house. You'll notice that a lot of the goals for Jinx are close to Isis' goals.
Here’s what I’m hoping will be accomplished with Jinx this summer:
  • Loose Leash-  Jinx is relatively good on the leash. She tends to get the leash tight when faced with scary people. I want to work towards her CGC and the heeling needs to be done.
  • Attention Work - Yep, just like with Isis, I've poisoned my "watch" command so I'm retraining my main attention command as "Eyes". I'll be using Sue Ailsby method that that.
  • 3 Passive Human Interactions - Jinx is terrified of new people so I'm looking to get her used to my father's business partner, his wife and their son at the very least. Hopefully no reactions on the walks will be part of this.
  • Zen - Food Zen to be precise. Jinx does not have very good control when it comes to food. In fact she is a food thief when it come the other dog's food. Well, mostly Isis' food, she leaves Kratos' food alone.
  • Nose Work - I'm going to be working with the 3 pups on Birch plus it will give them something to do and entertain their minds. Jinx is pretty nosy so this shouldn't be hard for her.
  • Go To Place/Crate - Jinx is pretty good about going to her crate but she lacks the speed that I would like her to have. I'll be doing crate games with her too. Her place will just be brushed up on because she is a not lying on the mat anymore but beside it.
  • Recall - Jinx likes to give the boxer "What's in it for me?" look. And when she does, it's really ssssslllloooooowwww. Everything Jinx does is slow :P
  • Emergency U-Turn - For use on walks. Jinx would rather follow me so I'd like to put it on cue.
  • Some Weird Issue That Will Suddenly Develop - Now, we all know Jinx is a big weirdo so she'll probably act weird and some crazy new annoying behavior will pop up within the year. Maybe, I'll tackle her food problems.

Please Share
What your training goals are for the summer. Do you have an issue that you are struggling through too?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

It only takes one dog...

Really. It only takes one dog to ruin everything you've done in a second. In case anybody is wondering, Isis got attacked today. For once in her life she didn't instigate. In fact, she didn't even see it coming. It was an accident and I completely understand that.

At the end of the hotel, in the last room are two pitbulls (Yes, both are APBTs) . One of the is human/ dog reactive and the other is just dog reactive. One of the kids in the room opened the door at the wrong time and wasn't able to keep the human/dog dog back. He came right for Isis and I. I quickly picked up Isis and slung her over my shoulder (quite a feat for someone as small as me). He made one lunge and got the back leg of Isis before I landed a swift kick to his chest. That got him thinking twice and his owner was able to grab him before he came back. His owner apologized profusely and made sure that we were both okay after I put Isis up.

But the damage is done, both physical and mental. Isis has 3 punctures and 1 gash while I'm just covered in scratches from Isis. But mentally, Isis has been set back from working with dogs. All the work I've done with dogs behind fences is probably ruined. My hope for another dog while Isis is around is diminished.

To be honest though, I'm glad Isis was the dog I had out instead of Jinx or Kratos. Kratos wouldn't have fought back and it would have ruined his like of other dogs. And Jinx? I wouldn't have been able to stop Jinx from tearing that dog a new one. I gave the owner the name of a trainer around here so he could look into it when he had the chance. Maybe it will help him and his dogs. That'll be good for both of us.