Skylar’s second day in the program was a good one. Due to the ongoing, extremely cold weather, being outdoors is not an option, so one of the ways we’ve been working to help her release her pent-up energy is by engaging her in controlled play with a tug toy.
Because Skylar is a herding dog, “feeding the breed” is an important component in helping her learn to take control of her inherent hyper-sensitivity to loud noises and sudden movements. Violet has been of tremendous help in this regard: she initiates chase-and-stop play with Skylar, which encourages Skylar to attempt to “herd” her – but without the nipping that usually accompanies livestock herding. Violet and Skylar have engaged in this type of play several times, now, and when Violet ends the game, Skylar is happy to take a rest and relax.
Glimmer does not play with Skylar, but she is helping the young dog in other, equally important ways. She is leading by example when we’re doing door, sound, and controlled barking exercises. I state what I want, Glimmer performs the response, Skylar watches Glimmer, and then she tries to mimic the behavior. And because Glimmer is also calm during these exercises, Skylar also tries to mimic that calmness.
Day 2 was a fairly quiet day for us but Day 3 will be more active. Skylar is going to be introduced to the treadmill…