Monday, December 30, 2013

Its all about Play- so lets take a class!

Ok, I have to admit I was about the WORST training buddy for Chris and Ricky.  The plan was to take Denise Fenzi's on line class "Relationship Building Through Play".

The Relationship through play focuses on the different types of play...Toy Play, Food Play and Personnel Play which is play with your dog that does not involve food or toys. By definition personnel play is play that you can use with your dog while training and while in the ring when you can not have food or toys-there will still be times when you can be playful and reward your dog.  It is my understanding this Relationship Through Play is an overview type of class and there are some other classes where there is JUST personnel play explored, or just food or toys.

Chris/Ricky, and Cricket/I  signed up for auditing spots since the worker bee spots were filled by the time we got over to the sight to sign up.  The PLAN was to work together and post so we could still get the most we could out of the class. has just been a hectic month, and I was gone on a trip, was gone to a seminar, and just had a million things including the holidays filling my little brain, so the class is over and now I am starting ;-), but now I am going to work through the class!  Chris was an awesome sport and did awesome in the class.

Our first assignment was to create a baseline video of food play, toy play, and personnel play with our dogs so we could look at what was going on and where we need help and where we could use more skills.  Seems like a great idea, although it is a bit rough to post playing with your dog, I always feel a bit silly.

First off is toy play.  OMG, I have to say lately Cricket is about the perfect dog.  She goes up to ANYONE and sits nicely to be petted, she even likes kids lately, she just has a softness about her.  I remember being at this very park a few years ago working with opens and being very careful so she did not run after the joggers, now here in the video there are three skateboarders that go by and I throw the toy right after them, and Cricket barely notices them, she is just intent on playing with me and would never dream of leaving.  HOW could I even think of getting a puppy when my little girl is so darn easy now days...  Anyway, here is our baseline video for toy play.

Next up we have food play.  Movement is a HUGE reinforcer for Cricket, probably bigger then toys, or food and certainly bigger then personnel play.

Last we have personnel play....sigh.....  Let me say this is probably way better then our usual personnel play.  Cricket uses her mouth, a lot.  So when I have tried to do more personnel play, she really gets uncomfortable because it makes her want to chew and she is very nervous she is going to bite me.  If Cricket has a toy to chomp on then she can play and she is very happy.  Personnel play seems to make her uncomfortable and it makes me uncomfortable because I am not great at it.  When we took Denise Fenzi's Heeling Games class that was the one area we had trouble in during the class, Denise would want us to reward during some games with personal play and that was rough for us.

Hopefully this class will help us address this area of play.

OH yea, this video has a lot of pretty loud, frustrated barking, fair warning, ;-)

I hope to catch up over the next week or two and talk about the One Dog Mind Training Seminar, which left me lots to think about, and of course I want to talk about Puppies, and everything else that has been going on to catch you all up on the last couple of weeks!