Training Homework RECAP, Boogie’s new toy
Photo taken from this morning’s BAT session with Sarah and Irith.
We were recreating the scenario last May when Boogie attacked a person who walked through this porch speaking loudly into a cellphone.
Boogie did really well! He knew the drill, looked, then turned away from Irith and followed me into the apartment. I mixed up the rewards of treats, tennis ball, back scratches and praises.
As Irith Bloom (The Sophisticated Dog) explained to me: Even though what we do is highly repetitive (like military drills) and may seem pointless, we are teaching Boogie new habits and we want him to repeat these behaviors over and over again (in a calm under-threshold state of mind) so that they sink in and become second-nature. Should Boogie feel threatened by a strange person, we want him to instantly turn away/retreat, and look at me for direction instead of taking control and charging forwards.
I still need to work on Recall cues because Boogie tends to get distracted easily and ignore me in the case of smelly grass or squirrels.
- “Boogie!” recall, with outdoor distractions.
- “Let’s Go!” U-turn cue. Practice this many time outdoors on walks.
- “_______!” <– I need to think of a unique word or phrase to train (with extremely high value treats) and use as an Emergency Recall cue.
I know this blog is becoming very repetitive. We have these BAT sessions week after week and I write the same ol’ stuff over and over again. My apologies to Boogie blog readers. I repeat these training notes to remind myself of the progress that we are making and also to help me not get slack.