June 21, 2011
Adventures with Arlo: Week 2
Although Arlo seems very mature to me for his age, he really is just a puppy. And one of his puppy habits is that he follows us from room to room--just in case, you know, we might be doing something REALLY INTERESTING. Even though I know he'll probably grow out of this, it's kinda flattering for now. Here he is "helping" me change the sheets in the guest room by squeaking his squirrel.
Managing a Multi-Dog Household (a terrifically helpful e-book from Whole Dog Journal), the key to a happy 2-dog household is good management (backed up, of course, with solid training).
Training over the past week included more sit-to-say-please, down, stand and touch. On leash, squirrels are his biggest challenge. He's so interested in them that he can't pay attention to anything else. I've been using penalty yards to get his attention (backing away from the squirrel until he looks at me, then reinforcing attention to me with hot dogs). This is working okay except that I don't like putting pressure on his neck when I back up, even when I move slowly. So I'm going to order him a Sense-ation Harness. Probably, squirrels are going to be the biggest obstacle to eventually letting him off leash. The good news? The very healthy squirrel population around here means we have lots and lots of opportunities to practice.
ETA: In the first photo above, Arlo is wearing his new, spiffy collar purchased recently from Nola and Spencer, my new favorite place for dog collars.