Gotta Brag A Bit

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Hound dog, Jul 17, 2012.

  1. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I know I'm probably boring you all with my Maggie brags, but I have to say.........this baby girl is amazing. I knew she was intelligent, but that is an understatement. I thought Molly was really intelligent, but Maggie is outpacing her by leaps and bounds. Which makes me grateful that I started training really early.

    I've never ever, and I've worked with a LOT of dogs over the years, seen a puppy of her age master commands as quickly as she does. Normally at the age of 3 months I'm not working with very many commands because attention span is short, and memory is short...........but Maggie's list of commands is almost right there with Molly's already and I'm adding more complicated ones. Her new ones are Left Right Wait Go. These are commands for while we're walking on lead. I like my dogs out front most of the time or by my side. I want them to go where I go and I don't want to have to pull on the leash. Left and Right tells them which way when we come to a corner if I want them to turn. If we come to a street we need to cross, first it's Wait, to look for traffic or wait for the light, then Go, which means no dilly dallying get your fanny across the street. These Molly is helping me train her with because she already knows what to do and Maggie follows her lead.

    We now make certain Travis takes along his cane (he needs it anyway) when we take the daily walks. Doesn't phase her a bit. First time she wanted to chew on it and try to catch it but I told her to Leave It and she stopped. Doesn't make her the least bit nervous. I'd like to start taking her to the nearby nursing home to visit patients soon as she no longer dribbles with excitement over meeting new people. I was going to call and ask them if it's ok first. I know they let pets come in to visit the residents, but still. I want to do it because I want her not to be afraid of walkers or wheelchairs, as well as socialize her and cheer them up with a cute puppy to love on. We have a couple of young people in the neighborhood who use wheelchairs that are electric.....and they don't bother her but she's not had much opportunity to get very close either.

    I've come up with a hand command for Down (lay down) and another for Come, so we'll be working on those quite a bit for a while. Hmm. I need to do Stay too. Molly does come and stay with no effort......I never really trained her for either, so I didn't really have a hand command for it. Maggie does get that if Mom snaps her fingers, she needs to pay attention now and wait for the command to follow.

    Oddly, she is not easily distracted during training, regardless of her energy level. With Molly I had to wait until after playtime and burn off some of her extra energy first.......well, with all the pups up until Maggie.

    Two that crack me up are:

    No Feets - stop digging in the water dish ( I told her this each time she did it and I'd take hold of her feet and make her stop, place them outside the bowl)
    Night Night - open the fridge, take out a piece of cheese, say Night Night (she can be anywhere in the house if she hears that cheese wrapper) and she zooms into her crate at the speed of light. It took 6 months for Betsy to relate the two, Maggie was 2 days.

    At the rate she's going..............I might run out of command ideas by the time she's a year old.

    And loving? omg Once we got her completely over all the not being socialized very young issues..........she is over the top lovable, cuddly, patient. When not training or playing or walking, she naps under my computer chair about 4 inches from Molly. lol I have to be careful not to step on her when I get out of the chair. She adores the grandkids but does not jump up on them (the Off command stopped that quickly), loves to kiss them but doesn't chew (Leave It command stopped the chewing biting on people) and gets super excited when they come over. The cats adore her, she adores the cats. And the way they play together is utterly amazing Maggie doesn't get her nose bloodied, but the cats don't care and it looks rougher than it is.

    House training is basically finished. Accidents are my fault, all are right smack in front of the door, and it's because I didn't see/hear her for some reason. Doesn't happen often, but there are times I'm distracted by chores or kids or something and don't spot her.

    Maggie is no Molly. Maggie is Maggie and a truly wonderful amazing dog in her own right. I am a volunteer for the dog pound, so I am connected with their fb page and often post urgent notices for dogs who's time is running out for foster care or adoption. I spotted Maggie's sister. No doubt it was her sister, identical to Maggie and the exact same age. I was about to pick up the phone and tell them I'd come adopt her, when a rescue was found that would take her. I just couldn't stand the thought of a pup with Maggie's potential being put down for any reason, even if I had to train her and rehome her myself. But I was both relieved and glad she got into a good rescue who are rather strict on adoption and train the dogs with all the basic commands prior to adoption.

    If we'd not worked on her social and had not kicked in her training right away, Maggie would be a difficult dog to deal with, even at this age. She was a bit stubborn and willful until the training really kicked in, now she's eager to please and enjoys learning new things..........and she loves her liver treats & cheese. LOL In some ways, she doesn't act like a 3 month old puppy, she is so darn well behaved already. :)
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Lisa... you won't run out of "commands". You'll start stringing them together. Goggle 'rally-o'. We don't compete - just do it for ourselves, but it gives the dog a real brain workout. You set up a "course" and they have to walk beside you and follow a string of expectations, some of which are not commands (walking faster or slower and they have to keep pace with you).

    You can also work on therapy dog certification requirements (whether you pursue certification or not). Sounds like you're kind of doing that already.

    Maybe even train her as a service dog - not a seeing eye dog, that's a whole different ballgame. But a service dog. Certified, with vest. So that she can go EVERYWHERE with Travis. This does require certification. But... even just having that size of dog along is a big safety win. And with service dog certification... they can even go into grocery stores etc. - they are no longer pets.
  3. Jody

    Jody Active Member

    Oh Lisa, I absolutely love to hear about Maggie and Molly and Rowdy. You know I am a dog lover, lol. I have a new pup, and am so happy to report that she is smart too. Not as smart as Maggie, but she's 8 weeks old and does not potty in the house. She had one accident and that is because of human error, not hers. She is content to lay down with a chew toy. Broady is a little jealous but he seems to like being a big brother and let that puppy get out of sight for a second and he's off to find her. He does not tolerate her biting my toes very well though. He has thunked her on her head for that one.
  4. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Jody, Broady will help teach her manners, don't worry. LOL I can see him in my mind's eye thunking her on the head. :rofl: Sounds like she is off to a very good start! Have you come up with a name for her yet?

    I can't wait until you can figure out how to do the pics. I'm dying to see her! I bet she is adorable, cocker puppies are so cute......well, heck as grown dogs they're still cute. Do you have a photobucket acct? You can upload the pics there then copy / paste the link in your post here and we can see them. :) I can't do new pics of Maggie right now, Nichole borrowed my camera.
  5. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Hound, lol, I have had kids that weren't that smart! More power to her...and to you. DDD
  6. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    LOL DDD, I've also had kids that weren't that smart.

    Odd side effect of constantly training a carries over to small children. I've found myself telling Connor to Sit (giving him the same hand command as Maggie) when he attempts to climb out of his chair at meal time and such. It takes more times with him, but he's catching on. LOL And it's really funny hearing him try to tell Maggie to Leave It when she's trying to snatch his favorite blankie.........since he doesn't talk very well, I can barely make out what he's saying, it's his tone more than anything. Too cute.

    Oh, and if I snapped my kids froze. Found out that works on grandkids as well, even if they haven't been raised to do so. Used it on Darrin who was pushing his luck in a doctor waiting room. Didn't say a word, snapped the fingers and pointed for him to sit. He sat. LOL

    So I'm not sure if I train dogs like children or children like dogs, I do them nearly the same. :rofl:

    IC I might look into some therapy training for Maggie. Molly has always been happiest when she's been busy. Maggie is the same way. Fortunately for Molly, Maggie keeps her busy......which also keeps Molly busy because now that Molly is once again active, she's back to many of the old things she used to do when she was younger. We're working on Rowdy. His shorter walks seem to be working. He's not as stiff and his gait is more normal and he's slowing increasing his distance. So a little hope there too. :)
  7. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Lisa... WOW. You thought you got one new dog... and it almost sounds like you have THREE "new" dogs!