Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Yep, it is official Lizzie is "special"
I had a private and we were going to work on teaching object discrimination. Alicia set up a straight tunnel next to the Aframe. There was a jump then the tunnel/Aframe and then a jump after the objects for the dog to drive to. Alicia put an x-pen in front of the Aframe and I was supposed to have Lizzie go over the jump, then tell her "out-tunnel" while pushing on her line with my arm straight out from my shoulder and taking a step into her line, she would in theory come out of the tunnel and be rewarded after the jump that was after the tunnel. Then we would put the x-pen in front of the tunnel so she would not take that, have her go over the jump, I would pat my leg and tell her "here-Climb" so she would know to take the closer obstacle (the aframe), and then go out over the jump and be rewarded. Sounds pretty simple Right?
I sat Liz in front of the jump and looked at the x-pen in front of the Aframe and thought, hummm, she will either try to jump the x-pen or she will smash right through it and notice what happened about half way down the other side of the aframe. I was a little nervous as I released her and told her "out-tunnel" and pushed on her line and gave the arm signal and sort of held my breath. Sure enough, Lizzie ran down the side of the x-pen between the tunnel and the aframe until she got past the x-pen and leapt onto the aframe about half way up the aframe and then ran down into a 2020 position behind the x-pen. I had not considered that possibility. We tried again and this time she ran in between the tunnel and aframe and went to the back of the aframe and went up and over the aframe landing in a gorgeous 2o2o position behind the x-pen and just looked so pleased and proud to have passed what I am sure she thought was some sort of weird proofing exercise, she knew she had had to work hard to do it all just right. OOH Lizzie. I finally had to take her and guide her with hand in collar up and into the tunnel before she considered that option. It was hard not to laugh, especially when Alicia looked a bit frustrated and said she had never seen a dog try anything like that with this exercise.
Of course right after Lizzies gorgeous performance, it was Breeze's turn. Breeze of course just did the whole thing perfectly the first time and by the second time had the whole idea, it never occurred to her to run all around trying to get around or over the x-pens, she seemed to realize that the x-pens meant that she was not supposed to go on that obstacle being blocked.
I always have to remember what ever we teach, we have to consider the Lizard factor. No wonder I love her, she is always thinking overtime.