'Not only is punishment risky, but it also fails to teach the dog an acceptable alternate behaviour. The dog does not learn what to do the next time he is in the same situation. He only learns to fear the situation.' Emma Parsons, Click to Calm p73

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Walking on Ice.

Today, despite the tiny flurry of snow we had this morning, the sun has been out and steadily melting the snow that we still have. That's not a good thing though, as on both of the two walks we've had so far today, I slipped and almost fell in the middle of roads. Multiple times on both walks. It's getting ridiculous now--I want the snow gone, but I don't want this ice, and I kind of want another white Christmas.

The dogs still don't like the snow much. Lola has a new coat now, lined with fake sheep wool, and although she's not a fan of how strangely it makes her walk (being as its an awkward size; she's just over 2.5kg, and yet the coat that she needs, thanks to her long back, was about a ten inch--so it fits along her back, and is too big around her neck and waist) I think she likes the extra protection from the cold. She's been much more outgoing on walks now, chasing Jess and greeting other dogs... and skirting people, generally. She's not fearful, just shy; and no, mate, it doesn't help when you swoop down and try to pick my puppy up. People can be ridiculous.

At the moment, we do two walks each day. One is at about twelve or one in the afternoon, and I take both dogs out; this gives them both exercise (with Jess naturally needing less anyway, being as she is almost eleven years old) and keeps them asleep for a couple of hours when we return home. The second walk is just Lola, at about three or four (depending on how awake she is; it's mean to drag a sleeping puppy out into the cold), to let her meet and greet other dogs away from grumpy ol' Jess, and to give her more exercise so she doesn't pester Jess to play quite so much.

On the first walk of today, Jess decided that, hey, if kids are kicking a ball around then they obviously are trying to kick it to her. They just didn't know it yet. She snatched the ball, which I had to quickly get back off of her before her strong grip punctured it, and then I handed the slobber-covered thing back to the little boy who'd been playing with it. Jess got the message and left it alone after that, whilst Lola trailed behind and watched as usual.

There were more dogs out on the second walk, and Lola got to meet and greet, in order: a slightly overweight Jack Russell Terrier (with a Staffie's head--that was weird) called Tiny; Peppy or Peppe, a Staffie-something cross that J knows and occasionally plays with; a German Shepherd-like dog, Shiba, who had been playing with Peppy and had gotten Lola's interest (though of course, she was slightly bemused when both were sniffing at her - but no yelping or barking, so that was a plus); and then a pair of Patterdale Terriers, one on-lead that I didn't catch the name of and another off-lead that seemed more friendly and was called Jake. She was respectful of the other dogs' spaces, though she did try to play with Tiny (chasing and bowing, like she does with Jess) as Tiny's owner tried to walk on past us, and immediately returned to me each and every time I blew my whistle, no matter how exciting the other thing was.

I could definitely get used to this whole obedience thing.

1 comment:

Debbie McCune said...

This is such a lovely blog and the photos are gorgeous :-)

Whenever we finally get a puppy I shall be hunting through for tips!