Thursday, December 10, 2009

Secret Learns Shaping!

Last night I decided to lock myself & Secret in the bedroom armed with nothing but a clicker, treats & a touch light and see what would happen. I had introduced her to the clicker the night before so that she'd have an idea of it. The results amazed me! Neither of my boys ever really caught on to natural shaping, so I wasn't sure what to expect.

Secret didn't really care about the light at first and just sat and looked at me, waiting for me to do something. As soon as she turned her head towards the light I clicked & treated. She seemed to catch onto that pretty quickly, so then I upped the criteria to moving towards it. In an astonishingly short amount of time she moved to touching it, and from there it was a short step to turning it on & off.

I didn't have the video camera out for the first part of her training because I really didn't think that much would happen. When she showed me what she was capable of, however, I quickly went out and grabbed the camera to document it. She is a fantastically bright little dog.

Now I'm busy scouring the internet, looking for ideas of tricks to train over the winter. I think we're going to have so much fun!

Our perfect potty-training record has been broken -- not once, but twice. :o( Yesterday, at work, I failed to take her outside when she woke up from her nap in the afternoon and she went potty on one of the dog beds. Totally my fault! Then, this morning while I was opening the curtains at home, I looked down and saw a small wet spot in the carpet. Argh, when did that happen? I'm slacking and giving her too much freedom already. We haven't had any pooping accidents in the house yet, those have all successfully occured outdoors.

Secret will make her public debut at my agility class tonight and I'm looking forward to showing her off to my students!

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