So remember ages ago I wanted to increase Lu’s love of tug? Well, I kind of forgot about that for a while but she kept pushing this stinky boring rope at me this afternoon so I thought we’d play a bit.
I ended up getting some treats out and rewarding her with thrown treats for really intense growly tugs. I know, the internet says you’re not really meant to do this but I don’t actually see why. Am I missing something? Maybe it’s not that great for a food obsessed dog like Mal who is OBVIOUSLY only tugging in order to get treats… for Lu, it seemed more like; hey hey, cool game! yeah, this is awesome… OHH BONUS FOOD!!! So rather than: “I will tug in order to achieve treats” (Mal), she seemed to be more like: “I will tug because it is somewhat good and also it is now excellent that I am receiving treats.”
THEN I took her in the training room and did some awesome box games. (just free shaping, but with a box). God I love her attitude sometimes- which is why agility can be so frustrating for me because i see this awesome trying-really-hard attitude at home and we get to the field and she just feels (felt) flat. So after that I took out about 4 or 5 toys of varying values and played tug. I got great, intense tugging for good periods of time out of all of them, and rewarded the first 3 with thrown biscuits, and the last 2 with a deflated soccer ball that she LOVES. I even took the soccer ball off her and she wanted it SO BADLY so I got her to tug with a really average toy- one she doesn’t like much at all, and didn’t want to at first, and then she did and then she got her soccer ball. So, I don’t know. Maybe this is ‘bad trainer’ or something but it was good and fun and she liked it I think and it wore her out a bit because I’m being very good and having a complete rest day. No walks. No agility. Just inside tricks and shaping.
In other news, I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want to find in a mate for Lu, when the time comes. I have a list of suitors. It’s silly. It feels a bit like a perverted shopping list. My main characteristics are:
++people-friendly (loves kids but doesn’t love them enough to get lots of Aussie cuddles. Anyone with an Aussie knows what I mean. She’d rather be off to the next interesting thing than to stick around getting patted).
–weirdness about having things on their body
–wariness toward strangers
So hopefully with all that, I’d have some stellar puppies that can jump. But I thought I’d wait until she’d been competing for a year (so she’d be 2 and a half) so I can make an informed decision about whether I actually WANT one of her puppies because if she doesn’t do well, then there’s not much point.
in other, other news, Silvia said her RC from the video were “beautiful” and confirmed that she currently has a LOT of obstacle focus but that that’s not a bad thing, just that I need to work more come to hand. No probs!