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1.28.2009

SENDING SOME BARK OUTS!


Our Accessories
by Gentle Leader


We were reading poor little Archie & Agatha's Blog. His vet recommended that he wears his gentle leader again since he became traumatized by the snowplows. He seems sad about the whole thing. (Sorry, hard not to laugh at your postings-- good idea to opt out of wearing a cowboy hat to the vet)

We feel for you. If this helps, we wear gentle leaders over here too. Mine even matches my lovely purple designed collar & leash. And, I always like to accessorize with a matching bandana. Maybe you can find one to go with your fancy bowtie??! Think fashion--


A SPECIAL BARK OUT!
We wanted to give a big AROO THANK YOUU to the Bubblegum Akitas. We took them up on their offer of a free horoscope reading! It was quite a lengthy reading.

Here are a few snipnets:

Tula's birthday (rescue day) falls under the Cancer sign:

Tula needs to feel like she's number one!
So, I'm doing the right thing, having an entire closet full of bones, toys & treats, feeding her first and well, yah. Not a problem.. really, no choice.

Tula must be guarded from her own impulsive actions.
Trying! Trying hard.

Tula is attractive to other dogs and will know how to manipulate animals and human's alike. Hmmm, does that include me?! Seems a little like #1 bizness.

You can't get Tula out of the kitchen.
I always know where to find her.

Tula knows how to show you who's the boss. She seems to radiate an attitude of respect, Don't mess with me!" Got it! Figured that one out on my own.

She communicates by telepathy and does not understand why you cannot understand. Wishful thinking.


We're fans of both their blogs. Keep all the good stuff coming!

& dee

1.25.2009

Spay Day 2009

Spay Day is The Humane Society of the United States' and Humane Society International's annual event to inspire people to save animals' lives by spaying or neutering pets and feral cats.

To support Spay Day, enter the Spay Day Online Pet Photo Contest - it's a great opportunity to celebrate our pets, raise funds for spaying and neutering, and win
great prizes!




should I go with my right or my left side?

1.23.2009

Training Log #2: Confessions of a Reactive Dog


Reactive Class II: Second Session by tula
Back from our week off and ready to get started! I was too excited to take my usual nap on the drive there. Can't wait to get rowdy.. I mean, to be calm when I see everyone again.

Meet My Class

This is the classroom. (Not how you pictured it??)
Emma Parsons, author of Click to Calm is our instructor.

Photobucket

Woohoo, over here! Look way in the back! You can't see me.. but, that's on purpose. Everyone is in their spot behind the tall wooden barriers. The front spots are for those dogs who can handle more exposure during our activities.

Confession/Slight Embarassment:
uhmmmm, I'm just not ready for all that yet. (maybe someday)


Lesson: Circus Tricks! (aka The OBSTACLE COURSE)
Well, it seems like circus tricks-- all the weaving, jumping, this way then that way, and you want me to go through what?! Emma was trying to convince us that these exercises create a "thinking dog" versus reacting.

Oh, I was thinking alright, I was thinking about:

Hey, who's that over there?

What are they doing?

You can't do that!

I can't see!

Photobucket


Callie was up first.

Pretty good work. No Problems.
Just between you & me.. this wasn't her first time.



Let's see what Daisy can do..




Where'd she go?


Then... here it comes: Does tula want a turn? Of course - at least, I'll go through the hoops as long as I get to sneak some peeks at everyone.

Circus Trick 1: Over the first pole. good good.
Over the second pole- a little sloppy. Accidently knocked the pole down.

Another Confession:
I'm not actually jumping and you could say, not really paying too much attention to the pole either.

Circus Trick 3: THE TUNNEL
Notice it's not as long as daisy's! There is no way I'm going through-- I'll stick my head in there and that's it!



Circus Trick 4, 5, 6:
After weaving in & out of the poles, sitting on a platform AND
going over 2 more jumps.



Wait. What was Nola doing?.... Yah, well, it's back to my spot.

Click & Chicken time.

Nola's up.

Uh oh, she's headed my way- I want to look but I want that piece of chicken too. The urge to GRRR & lunge are coming over me. What to do? what to do?
My mom keeps saying 'Good Looking Tula!'

Then there's the whiff of chicken in front of my nose.
Click & Chicken.

Exhale.

**Somehow I can be distracted from my distractions--interesting.




Superstar Circus Status! Bravo!

That was only the first half hour of class. Next, Emma wanted us to practice certain exercises when we're not 'working' or you know, just sitting there.
She says reactive dogs have a harder time if they're not focusing on something.


Exercises: Doggie Zen is like the LEAVE IT command.
My mom showed me the treat in her hand.

Closed her hand and held it out to the side.

So, I stared at her hand. Nothing. Kept staring & staring.
Then it finally happened. Once I looked at her eyes, to say, What's the deal?
Click & Chicken

Oh course!



Sit/Down- Stays

Now I had to move out in front of my barrier and sit.

Hey Callie's over there. Why, wait, why is Daisy jumping around?
(slight distractions)

Then my mom walked to stand in front of me for a minute or 2 mins.

Repeat.

This time she turned her whole back to me. How rude!


Confession:
She didn't even know I was too busy watching Nola the whole time.


Before class ended, Julie visited me in my cell, I mean spot. She called me Miss America! and even sang it. Julie usually teaches us about massage to help with relaxation each class. She thinks I'm doing very well- let's be honest, the words were Superstar since the first time I came to class.

Exhausting, time to go home.



Grade:
B+ Kept it together through the entire class!


Reactive Dog Classes are held at MasterPeace Dog Training, Franklin MA
Julie Robitaille, CAMT is the owner of Animal Wellness Massage Therapy

1.19.2009

The Intelligence of Dogs

How smart are dogs?!

I came across this interesting video through another blog. It discusses research on dogs trained to assist autistic children. Being a special ed. teacher, the two topics caught my attention.
The video demonstrates how in tune dogs are to our every move-- body language, even more so our eyes! (Just a side note: I couldn't help to laugh-- I use my eye movements to teach children with autism to pay attention to other forms of communication too. It's amazing how parallel some things are in teaching.)

Anyways.. this explains why strange things happen while my eyes are closed on the couch.
Enjoy, d & t

A link to the blog site:
www.viassistancedogs.blogspot.com

1.18.2009

snow drops keep falling on my head

“When it snows, you have two choices: shovel or make snow angels.”


Maybe there's more?
Uh, I think I'm frozen... To.ooo haaard tooo crrraaack aaa ssmmmile---who cares, I luv the snow and frigid temperatures! How could you not? I am the first one to leave fresh tracks, to write yellow messages on every corner & driveway, and most of all, to be covered with the sparkly, fluffy stuff in 10 minutes! That is until I shake, shake, shake. The only downfall.. for a white furdo, it's not looking sooo white anymore.

from a frosty face,



1.15.2009

HOW TO GET DINNER by tula

Since class was cancelled tonite, Tula would like to give you one of her "How-to" tips.


How Not to Get Dinner
Hey! Trying to tip over the water bowl-not a good idea.
(watch for yourself)


video

Let's see that again, in a still frame.

Yep, she's got guilty written all over her!


Let's try it again.

How to Get Your Dinner- Take 2

video

Count down 5.4.3.2.1. EAT!!
And that's a wrap.
The end


1.11.2009

Training Log #1:Out of Sortz


Reactive II Class with Emma Parsons,
Author of Click to Calm

Lately my Thursday nights were all about after-dinner siestas. Not this Thursday-- no time for napping, we were headed out of the door by 7pm to make it in time for Reactive Dog class! My mom calls it my special ed. dog training class... I really don't think I'm special ed. I do like seeing my 'friends' even if we don't actually get to play with each other. I'll just sleep on the way there.

The First Class
Since it was the first session, we were hoping the other usual suspects, Otis & Shadow were signed up again. I didn't see them..And, Edge the naughty rottie wasn't there either. (His mom thought I could be his girlfriend:)) This means I was the only one repeating this time around, shucks. The new kids were Callie, a golden, Daisy some kind of cattle dog mix? (she wore a calming cap into class-never seen that before), Nola, a black chow chow, Max, a rottie, and me! Ok, so we have a new crew to get to know.

Tonight's Lesson: Reorienting to my mom
I took my usual spot in the back of the class-mostly b/c i'm one of the rowdiest. We have these tall wooden barriers in between us so we don't go 'over threshold' (or what my mom calls 'going berserko') just by seeing each other. Then class starts with everyone taking a turn walking out in the middle of the room, jumping over poles, walking on a teeter totter and going back to their spots. When i look at another dog, look at my mommie, hear a click, it gets me some tiny pieces of chicken! Everyone else has to practice watching me & staying calm--then they're clicked & treated too. Oh yeah, there was this pretend door we walked through too. i went first and everytime i stopped to look at my mommie, guess what? click & chicken. That's when our homework assignment was announced-HOMEWORK!! I had to practice reorienting to my mom at doorways, going in & out of the car, blah blah blah.

Sounds easy?? Well...with all these new dogs, smells and sounds, it kind of got everyone a little wound up for the first night. A bit of Grrring... barking... lunging. for me, i like watching, i always try to peek around that barrier thing. i want to see what emma is talking about AND what everyone else is doing too. Come on! Isn't this suppose to be fun?



Grade: B- a little out of sortz from having time off for the holidays.

Sorry, No Photos of class: we'll try to take pictures the next time.

1.07.2009

Top Ten List

1. You think begging for table scraps is beneath him, so you let your dog eat at the table with you.

2. You take him to the supermarket and let him pick out his own dog food.

3. Your husband comes home from work, looks at the stew on the stove and asks: "Is this people food or dog food?"

4. You bought matching His & Hers place mats for your dog and yourself.

5. At dinner parties you always have to double-check the butter for visible lick marks, before putting it on the table.

6. Your dog gets to vote on where to spend the next family vacation.

7. You don't care if you or your spouse are comfortable at night, as long as Fido has enough room on the bed.

8. You complain about the rising costs of groceries, but you don't think twice about spending a fortune on doggie treats.

9. Your dog always gets the best spot on the couch and sometimes he even gets to hold the remote.

10. He has his own e-mail address.

My #1 is my mom always has chicken or maybe that I have my own closet full of treats, or it could be that i have 3 beds! hmm. What's yours?

YABBA DABBA DOO


THERE'S NO SCHOOL!
Yippe, the phone rang right when we got home from our 5am walk! I don't get it - there was some slushy snow on the ground at first. Well then sleet started coming down. That part I didn't like. At least I'm not home alone hours after hours after hours waiting and waiting until the door opens ....and i'm only left with a bone and the same ole treats & toys. Nope. today I can stare at my mommie all day, beg, get belly rubs and go outside anytime I like.
It's going to be a biddy biddy day!