Zeke's NEW class

Discussion in 'General Dog Training' started by tx_cowgirl, Jun 30, 2009.

  1. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    Well, since I missed two days due to being out of town for work, and then got scheduled the next week because my manager's an idiot, I had missed 3 consecutive weeks of Z's class. SOOO, we just rescheduled and started over. We started actually on the second day of class because that was just the next class that we could make it to. Although the class went fantastic and he's a tad bit ahead of the others, AFTER class we had a bad experience.

    An cashier that works there and sees us regularly(usually just Mud) walked up to meet Z. Zeke cautiously sniffed his hand and I figured that was good enough for one day. Then he went to pet him, reaching over his head and bending over him. I should've stopped it there but instead just told him to pet him under his chin for a little bit. Zeke wasn't entirely comfortable but was handling it well. I said we'd see them next week and was fixing to head out when the guy decided to kneel down and try to snuggle Zekers before I could say anything or stop him. Of course that didn't go well. Zeke freaked and tried to get away from him, no biting or growling, just scrambling away. The guy panicked, thinking he was gonna get bit, and screamed like a girl. :dogdry: I was irritated and Zeke was scared to death. Zeke wanted nothing to do with him from then on, naturally.

    Today, the same cashier was working. Zeke would approach him but was still uncomfortable. This time I took the time to explain to him HOW to pet Zeke, what not to do, etc. He was more comfortable with him after a little time, but I didn't push him. But, the janitors had the floor buffers out tonight again(they did the first night too) and Z really doesn't like them. He doesn't panic, but he just is very wary of them so if we're working out in the store he's more tuned in to them than to me. TONIGHT we were working on heel down one of the aisles when the janitor decided he just couldn't do his aisles out of order. The floor buffer takes up the ENTIRE aisle, so no one can be on them if they are too. So with us very clearly training and the trainer standing right there, the moron doesn't move to a different aisle...he just keeps coming. I was pissed. I gave him a dirty look, turned around, and went to a different aisle. I wouldn't have been able to do anything with Zeke, and if I had been stubborn and stayed in his way Zeke would have spazzed out and it would've been a bad experience for him. So I just went to a different aisle. Most of the time they allow the customers to shop or whatever and they'll clean other aisles first. Ugh. :dogdry:

    Anyway...we do have a really cool way to get into position for heel. He was really just NOT catching on to any other ways to get in position. He wasn't getting the show-style, going all the way around behind to the left. He wasn't getting turning into my leg to get in position. He just wasn't getting ANYTHING. BUT...he knows a right spin and sometimes when he does it, he just nearly smacks into my left leg. So...we started having him kind of spin through my legs so he ends up in perfect position for heel. Basically the end product will be him spinning around so that he backs through my legs, then just smoothly steps right into position. It puts him in perfect position and looks really neat! :D It's going very well and surprisingly enough, it's the only way he's actually getting it!

    So....that's that. The first 2 classes. :)

  2. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    Wow, i will hafta try this on Buddy! He has same problem, of not being able to "get in" by my left leg. BRILLIANT!

    Ha, is good thing you DID stop to teach the pet store employee:yclown: HOW to approach an unknown dog. You'd almost think the store would teach this since they will be around unknown dogs all day long.

    I never thought about using a store to teach heel, good idea!
  3. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    I think they do somewhat, but they don't teach that you don't snuggle any strange dog, especially shy ones. Z just felt crowded and overwhelmed. We ARE working on his shyness so the petting was good for him(when he petted him the way I told him to), but the crowding was setback.

    In this class we work A LOT in the store. Using the aisles is good because it helps them stay in close for the heel, and also helps keep the handler from drifting. I'm quickly discovering that Zeke has a LOT of potential as an obedience competitor. I'm so proud of my Zekers. ^^ He could excel in so many events. I'm really tempted to get him in training for some competitive event. I think he would like agility or flyball best, but the only ones I have the opportunity to do anything with here are agility and obedience. I think he could make some good friends in his class, in time. For now the Aussie is a little overwhelming, but the Westie is interesting enough. Lol.

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