Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Two Quick Video Updates for Leia

I may or may not get around to recapping Pongu's trial weekend later, but in the meantime, a couple of super quick video updates on Leia:

She's learning how to play with dog toys and also learning to distinguish dog toys from Things That Shall Not Be Touched, i.e., everything else in my house. So far she's been mostly good.

She does tend to steal and shred Kleenexes, and she is not above raiding trash cans if the trash is food-related and within easy reach (she'll raid my wastebasket, because that's at an easy height for her, but has not attempted to jump into and knock over the kitchen trash), but that's all just normal puppy stuff. As long as her future home is willing to continue to provide appropriate structure and boundaries, this should be easy to handle. One promptly delivered "no" is usually sufficient to get her to knock it off, plus maybe a couple of steps in her direction to impose a little spatial pressure.

The main thing is that she'll probably need a decent variety of dog toys accessible to her. Leia is a fairly mouthy puppy (not extremely so, but... Labrador, you know?) and if she doesn't have enough toys to choose from, I suspect there is a fair chance she'd start making her own. Fortunately, in this house, there is no shortage of disgusting spit-crusted squishy toys strewn all over every square inch of floor space. Fortunately.

Anyway here's a short video of Crooky trying to encourage her to play. Their efforts keep getting somewhat spoiled by Pongu stealing the ball and proudly presenting it to me because he is a giant nerd, but that made me laugh too.

Potty training is still a work in progress (Leia's adopters should definitely have and be prepared to use a crate to help with that) but it's going pretty well. We finally got to the point yesterday where I could start working on other things besides "don't pee in my house." FINALLY.

Here we're doing a round of Sit:

She anticipates my cue a couple of times because this is currently the only thing she knows and so it's pretty easy for her to guess what the correct answer's going to be. Later we'll work on cue distinctions (maybe, if I have time). The more important thing for me right now is just to build up the value of Sit as a default behavior, since Leia is destined for pet life and having a really strong Sit is, in my opinion, probably more valuable for everyday life than a bunch of other cues would be in that setting.

I don't really know what I want to do with her next. Originally my plan was to do some intro nosework, but I actually don't know if I'm going to have the patience to get into that with Leia. She's a happy little worker and highly food-motivated, but her attention span is infinitesimal right now and the basic concept of "target odor" hasn't clicked immediately, and I have enough to do that I'm really not feeling that motivated to push through this initial hurdle.

Eh, we'll see.

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