Friday, September 14, 2012

Friday This n That

I've got small tidbits of thoughts today but no real post.  And since it's been a while since my last post, I thought it way past time to post something.  Hence, Friday This n That.  Hopefully my half-baked brain will return to normal status next week and you'll get some actual full posts out of me.

Dog Shaming

Without a doubt, Hurley could own the dogshaming tumblr.  Not only do I have loads of historical trouble but he continues to provide me with new material.  And for the record, I do think the site is sometimes hysterical and most times harmless.  Laughing at the antics of my dogs is something I do on a daily basis and it's vital to keeping my sanity.

But here's the issue:  Hurley is incapable of feeling shame.  Hurley Badger Don't Care.  So I have yet to do the whole dog shaming thing because I find it disingenuous to post a picture of him looking guilty as that would be totally false to who he is.  Dude couldn't even find it in him to be just a little bit ashamed when he busted out of a window screen (we weren't home and this bad mom forgot to check to make sure the window was closed) and ran next door to steal an ice cream cone from our 4 year old next door neighbor.  I'm sure he made her cry.  I'm sure he didn't care.  Luckily, we have amazing neighbors who laughed it off and put him in the backyard until we got home.  Now, this could go down as the best dog shaming yet.  Unfortunately, Hurley Badger Don't Care and shame's not his game.



What are your thoughts on the dog shaming site?  Hilarious? Harmless?  A sign that our society is doomed?

Shop Dog Hurley

It's been about 3 weeks since Hurley started coming back to the store with me.  Though we've had a few bad days, he is doing amazing!  He's graduated from staying in a kennel in the storage room to being in a kennel at the back of the shop.  I really thought he would struggle with being able to see dogs enter but not being able to greet them/warn them off (depending on his mood).  But he proved my worries groundless and, other than a bit of whining, he has been amazing with just observing the dogs in the store, seeing them get treats and attention from me and having NO ISSUE with it.  Of course, I liberally award treats and praise when another dog is in the store and I have also asked all customers to keep their dogs out of the aisle in front of his kennel so he has plenty of space.   The first week back, I definitely pushed him too far too fast and we had a bad day as a result.  So now I am taking extra, extra time with each step.  

Maggie Reactivity Progress!

Maggie made a huge leap in her leash reactivity last week.  I was walking her and Hurley, which tends to magnify any reactivity but she walked on the opposite side of the street as another dog without a reaction beyond raised hair.  Woot!  I was so so proud of her progress.  A lot of it was due to keeping Hurley distracted with the following blog tidbit:

Watch Me Replaces Leave It as Sarah's Mostest Favorite Command

Though Leave It has long enjoyed mostest favorite command status due to its versatility and its ability to help me help my dogs control their reactivity, my new favorite is Watch Me.  It's all due to Hurley.  He is a Watch Me Pro.  We are quickly turning Watch Me into his fail-safe command - that one which can get his attention no matter what.  I see him getting excited about seeing another dog on a walk and about to bark?  Watch Me!  His head turns to me ninja fast.  N-I-N-J-A fast.  Seriouslys.  He whips it around and he'll even run full speed towards me if he's not right by my side when I say it.  This has helped us tremendously both at the store seeing other dogs and on walks with his sisters.  He's so reliable about it that I can ask him for a Watch Me, tell the other dog to Leave It and we can walk by a dog-in-yard scenario with no one going craisins.  I'm super proud of him and am doing everything I can to continue to reinforce the command.  I wish I could take video of how quickly he whips his head around but it's most impressive when there are distractions around and that's exactly not the scenario where I'm going to waste any time whipping out a camera or phone.  

Them's the half-baked tidbits floating around in my brain today.  And your Married with Dawgs update for the week, jam-packed into one post.  I hope everyone has a great weekend!

11 comments:

  1. It sounds like you are making huge progress, on lots of fronts! Watch Me is a really good one--so fun to see results and to bask in that delicious eye contact. I remember when Fozzie got this one...I just loved watching his eyes meet mine. That was just one of the things that should have let me know he was going to be a foster failure:)

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    1. Isn't it a great one? Hurley struggled so much with direct eye contact (although he can conduct one hell of a staring contest with treats) when he was younger and now he's so great at it.

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  2. Oh I think the dog shamming is H-I-L-A-R-I-O-U-S! I don't get why so many people get their panties all in a bunch about it!

    I would love for Athena to be more reliable with her "watch me"command. She does an alright time with it, but "heel" is he strongest command to get her attention on us. I think that we need to use "watch me" more often because we don't use it as much as we should. That's so cool that Hurley is so good at it! I wish we could see a video of his ninja skills =)

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    1. I don't quite understand the objections to it either. I don't think any one seriously believes their dog is shamed by taking a picture and posting it on the internet. It's all in good fun!

      We struggled with Watch Me for quite a while; he was good at watching the treat in my hand but not so much at making eye contact. It's like something clicked a few months ago and he's progressively gotten more ninja-like and more willing to look directly at me. :)

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  3. I haven't gotten into the dog shaming thing although I think they are uber funny. Only one of my dogs shows only a modicum of shame and she is the only one who never does anything bad.

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    1. I feel you! If Sadie or Maggie ever did anything bad, I could totally get a great dog shaming photo because they would look so ashamed. Hurley, not so much!

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  4. I totally dislike that dog shaming crap.

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  5. We've had some success with Look which is the equivalent to your WATCH ME. It's been a while since I practiced it, but Delilah's head whips about too. It is a great command.

    As for the shaming, well I'm with you. Dogs don't feel shame. I don't see the point, but I will be participating in the human shaming blog hop next week. I'm kind of nervous as to what the dogs will submit.

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  6. I use "look" whenever Sage wants to go outside and make her wait, even with a squirrel chattering invitingly. And shame? I agree...no dog has any shame. In particular whenever there's something so disgustingly vile just lying there waiting to be rolled in and no amount of 'leave it' works....

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  7. Busting through a window screen and stealing a child's ice cream cone??? That is too hilarious to even be real. It needs to be a children's book. Seriously... write and illustrate that book.
    And oh, those moments when a leash reactive dog makes progress. :) I know those joys too well.

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  8. I have a mild discomfort with dog shaming. Not because the dogs care. Hurley isn't the only carefree pup. But the pessimist that I am assumes people set up their dogs and have a good time for the site. That doesn't mean they'll always have a good sense of humor about their behavior.

    I'm sure my misgivings say more about me than about the website. :) And I agree with you that people are insane for getting so upset about such things.

    But onto more important things--glad to hear about the successes in your home. It sounds like Hurley is doing great back in the shop. Congratulations on all your training and careful management.

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