Friday, June 24, 2016

Let It Be!


Yesterday and the day before, a breakthrough with my mighty midget! I am just letting her Be, and asking little things of her...taking off pressure completely. I think of how I might be belaboring what isn't happening, on my mental timeline with this one pup, and realize she has no idea there is that criteria of time. I'm not in a rush, no need to get a  pup out there the day they are old enough to compete. Or, push in training if they are showing they need some time. It's a dance, to figure out the balance. The last few days, we have been cutting up the floor!

She came along for our long 6 hour R/T trek to Maine for herding lessons, but did not work-she got to see sheep, to swim, just be a puppy and work on long line recalls. Just letting her be a dog, is how I am also approaching creating more reinforcement for her-when she chooses me over environment, which she did several times...big party! 

Our fun recalls are coming along, she has a light in her eyes again. At a ring rental yesterday, She happily did some little tunnel/jump (very low at 8") sequences and shaped end behavior on the Aframe, worked on our Mat/Down and some table games. Sometimes, I think changing venue helps them to BE more-if they have patterned a response (which she does/has) in one environment. Her focus is better when she is not hot also, me too-AC is so nice :) Outside on stock, can cool off in shade or water. 

Also, from our Teeter Bang game work at home-she was happily asking to do a full height teeter! I held the board to control the drop, but no fear. I see the desire to repeat, which hasn't been there...so letting her BE, but shaping that desire to increase. I don't know if I will  ever compete in agility with her, as sheep and cattle are her thing-but this training is definitely building our bond. 

I am also having her checked for Tickborne Diseases, just in case. Whenever energy or enthusiasm drop, if it is out of the ordinary-have to look at the physical too. 

This week has pretty much been awful otherwise for work, etc. but the Pluses are also what I was able to do the last few times in lessons with Kestrel and Speck. They both blew me away! To think this time last year, Kes was on R&R for her injury. Rest is a beautiful thing and just letting her BE, in how well she not only healed, but all of the PT/Ball work we did built our bond, when she couldn't do anything else. 

So when in doubt, my mantra is Let them BE! It can be amazing how quickly this becomes, what you are waiting for or hoping for...patience and time can be your friends in training and raising a pup. Part of why I like having more than one dog in training, at a time. The pups all need to figure out who they will Be too. Time flipped between, lessens pressure on me to accomplish something when it isn't happening on my muddled mental timeline..."in times of trouble", and on them too. "Speaking words of wisdom...Let it Be! Let it Be!" Do you hear Paul McCartney?




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