Gracie a young Cockapoo came to Royvon for training in July. When I picked Gracie up from her house she was a small bundle of fluff. She was a little shy which was fully understandable as she was being taken away by a stranger and put into a large van in which she was to be transported to Royvon.
It took Gracie a couple of days for Gracie to fully settle. She enjoyed her play sessions with the other dogs and I spent lots of time cuddling and playing with her.
When I started the training Gracie was full of beans and it took a while for her to pick up the concept of heel work. At every opportunity she would rush ahead to the end of the lead. After lots of corrections and constant walking backwards and forwards, she started to pick it up. I then turned my focus to teaching her the stay exercise. After spending so much time teaching her to follow me and walk nicely beside me, it was no wonder she found this exercise very confusing as now she just wanted to come with me, however I was very persistent and took it very slowly, gradually building the exercise up, I was so proud of her as when we added distraction. When Gracie was off lead she was generally very good returning to me when called, however there were times, as with any puppy, that she got distracted. In these cases I made sure that she only got one command and if she failed to come straight away then I would start to walk away from her, leaving it up to Gracie to come and find me. I also started to add the whistle in to the recall training. I introduced the whistle by blowing it and then having a game with her, to make the association that every time the whistle blew there would be a positive outcome. I always made sure that the game was with me so that she would always return to me in order for us to enjoy the game together. Gracie was always keen to please and the only thing that got in her way at the beginning was her enthusiasm, as she would often do what she thought she was supposed to do as opposed to what she had been asked. This did not bother me at all as she seemed to be enjoying herself. Gradually Gracie started to focus and listen to the commands given. Every correct position and behaviour was rewarded with my voice, a stroke or a game. Gracie was not very food orientated at all, which was great for me as this suited my way of training and we both got much more out of it. I was very sad when Gracie went home, however I could tell that her owners had missed her very much and it was a pleasure to doing the tuition with them and teach them all the techniques.
Gracie’s mum says
“She has truly been a different dog since she got home. She is much calmer. Walking her is much easier and enjoyable now that she doesn’t pull us along. She listens really well and has just been a joy to have home! We truly appreciate all of your help and work with her and we are looking forward to bringing her back to Royvon”