Saturday, February 13, 2010

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Please and Thank You


[A photo of the Puppy Raiser Tent and the bundled up morning crew at Woofstock. It was COLD!]

Fred had an interesting interaction while we were at Woofstock today. He was walking Bingo (sans coat) and passed a young couple with a dog on a leash. Bingo, Mr. "I am so distracted by other dogs", lunged at the other dog and Fred gave him a correction. As the couple passed by, Fred heard the girl say to her boyfriend, "They were only trying to play!"


[Jennifer and Mischa, an 8 month (I think) black lab in training, look into the camera]

Which makes me think about what we are trying to do with our puppies. And that brings up manners. What would that girl think if she had children but didn't teach them any manners? Or told them to only say please and thank you in the house, but not outside of the house? Either you have manners or you don't. You don't have manners part of the time. What happened with Bingo and that other dog was an issue of manners. It is impolite to rush another dog. The owner of the other dog doesn't know if your dog is friendly or aggressive. And if your dog is close to 80 pounds and black like Bingo, he can seem pretty formidable and scary. So, making sure that he greets other animals politely EVERY time is just plain common sense.

[Doreen and Wally, a very young black lab puppy in training, look in to the camera. Wally is wearing a red leg warmer that Doreen cut holes into so he would stop shivering, it was so cold and he is that small.]

Woofstock proved to be a constant challenge for Bingo. One circle of acceptance after another: first by the tent (he ended up five feet out, but started out across the sidewalk) and then over at the obedience practice circle where he was part of the circle FROM THE BEGINNING! Perhaps the hour and half of walking around with other dogs around finally wore him out. Here is a short video of Bingo and Diane (Don had every change dogs) in the circle. One of the things I love about this video is that Bingo gets distracted, gets corrected, calms down, stays in a sit and watch for the cute tail wag when she praises him.


video

[Sideview of Fred and Bingo, notice the slack leash, with the other SEGD dogs in a line watching the police dogs do their thing.]

video

Fred walked Bingo over to a bronze statue of a German Shepard at the park. Evidently, dogs find the statue very unsettling because the dog statue doesn't smell right and it has empty holes for eyes. Notice in the video that Bingo does initially get freaked out by the empty eye sockets, but he goes back.

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