Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Old Dog - New Tricks

Our new/old dog has some serious trouble trusting his people.  His recall skills are worse than non-existent.  When we have let him off leash, he just takes off.  If he even stops when we call him, it is just to look back at us, squint, and clearly say "no thanks" and continue on his merry way.  He has gained the nickname "Jackass" for this stunt.

Last weekend, we took "Jackass" and his youngest sister for a hike.  There were very few people out, even less dogs, and it was already getting late in the day.  We decided that we would try this off-leash thing one more time.  This time, I was prepared with a pocketful of gold-star treats.  Before he was untethered, I gave him a little treat.  Made quite a production over it, too.  Off came the leash and another treat was rewarded, accompanied by lots of treatbag crinkle.  For the next few miles, anytime "Jackass" started to get too far away, out came the treats and he came running back to us.  At one point, he was already a little distance away before a couple and their large dog crested the hill in front of us.  I called for Jack and he stopped.  He looked back at me, then back to the oncoming dog, then back to me.  Crinkle, crinkle!  That did it.  Jack came running back for his dessert and received a ton of praise.  Who knew that you could actually teach an old dog a new trick?!?

A couple of happy dogs - and humans!

No comments:

Post a Comment