Lilliana's Log Book

Tips for working towards a bullet proof recall

March 10th 2009 12:27 pm
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1. Pick a single word (cue word) that will be your emergency recall command (e.g. Front). Must be a unique word or a new word.

2. Start with dog on (long) leash and when she is not paying attention (preferably playing), use the cue word.

2.a. If she responds and comes to you, lavishly praise and have some very yummie treats like hot dog, cheese, or dehydrated steak.

2.b. If she does not respond, draw her to you using the leash and still lavishly reward her. You want to make her coming to you (using your unique word) a very happy experience.

3. Let her return to what she was doing and don't make it the end of something (like end of playtime or leaving the dog park). You want her to associate it with good things (praise, treats AND then she gets to go back to doing her thing).

4. Practice 3-4 times a day, using a longer lead over time.

If you want to improve your chance of a positive response when you call a dog by name, then praise and treat your dog each time she looks at you when you call her name (even for a flip of her head in response to your call).

Bullet proof recall could take hundreds of times. I've had to use the emergency recall and she raced back to me (looking for that treat mind you!) and I was grateful we'd worked hard on recall as a puppy.


My agility debut and a Blue Rosette Ribbon

March 2nd 2009 10:39 pm
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I competed in my first agility event today, March 2, 2009, the day I turned 15 months old (AKC allows exhibitors to enter dogs who are at least 15 months old). The show was four days long, and I watched from a shaded canopy spot for three days. Well, really I got to watch when I was quiet (no "woofs" appreciated). Guess people can hear my very soft whine, even though I think I'm being subtle.

On day 4 of the event, it wasn't frantic. Being a Monday, many people had already closed up tent and headed home or were busy and focused on other things. It seemed like a good day to give it a go.

I ran the Novice A Jumpers With Weaves (JWW) first and tackled 14 obstacles, with a run-out. Humom didn't trust me enough to follow her lead (body language) and took the path on the outside of the poles, where we met awkwardly between jumps and it confused me a bit. After that I blazed a course to the finish line reading every cue correctly. So for my first agility run in competition, I qualified (Q) and got a beautiful Blue rosette ribbon for first place.

My second event was Novice A Standard, and even without a Q, I completed the course as it was designed, starting and finishing with . I knocked down a pole early on and had a table fault and knocked off a couple poles on the final jump because humom was behind me and I turned to make sure she was coming with me (woof!). My weaves on the standard course were not as solid as JWW, and the table was a challenge since I had so much momentum that I ended up at the edge when mom asked me to "sit". An earlier cue for both the table and weave poles would help (note to humom). That standard course was hard work, about 17 obstacles and required a lot of running with a couple tricky course redirects.

I do have something to work on for the next AKC event: returning to humom instead of proudly walking toward the exit, which, if breeched with a leash on means an elimination (AKC rule) as of March 1, 2009. First time, she dove to the ground to get a hold of my collar, and the second time I was slower moving :0.

Today, was a very good day indeed - double woof! You'll have to take my word for it. The video camera battery was dead... completely zapped. Who needs a camera? I have my blue ribbon!


My first year

December 22nd 2008 10:09 am
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2008 was a year filled with new experiences and memories. Humom says I challenged and tested her while she gained patience, exercised more, learned about the benefits of consistency in applied leadership, and saw how a strong bond can be formed by supportive teaching. It was such fun-packed year, we thought we'd jot a few notes to remember 2008. So here it goes...

Lilliana's list for 2008:

I was the first pick of the litter and flew in an airplane.

I tried to smell a cholla cactus arm. Too painful to discuss!

I tried to smell a bee and was stung on the lip.

I had my share of puppy diarrhea.

I ate lots of bully sticks.

I checked things out by trying to eat them and mostly lost interest in rocks.

My barking decreased, but I can rev it up when I'm excited.

I went on a roadtrip and ran in a mountain stream.

I hiked in the mountains and walked in the woods.

I jumped off of a deck that was supposed to be too high for me.

I experienced horses, fish, sheep, deer, bees, mosquitos, flies, birds (my FAVORITE), owls, dogs, rabbits, chipmunks, lizards, snakes, scorpions, cats, bobcats, javalina, children, cars, trucks, motorcycles, different sounds, watched agility trials, babies, strollers, bicycles, and met many different people.

I don't have the urge to chase vehicles like I did as a young puppy.

I learned to share my house with two puppies that were saved from the county pound (Jet and Koda) and each have found their forever homes.

I had puppy play dates.

I learned many commands.

I passed three separate herding instinct tests (what a treat!).

I passed my Canine Good Citizen test from AKC.

I took six (6) training classes, including puppy class, obedience, Rally-O and agility. I didn't like Rally-O. I was bored, bored... zzzz. I like my agility lessons. I ran a practice course straight through on two different occasions. I am pretty fearless, too, and didn't blink when I ran off the end of the teeter before it settled to the ground (not recommended).

I beeline it to the door when the doorbell rings and announce everyone's arrival. Something to work on for 2009...

I don't like being left in a crate in public places and sometimes fuss at home too. Something else to work on for 2009!

I have a piercing bark - good if I were to get lost, not good if it's not the place and time to bark. Add minimizing barking to 2009's to do list too.

I was spayed and microchipped. As of December 22, I am nearly furless on my underside. Brrrr...

I am a good watchdog and send verbal alerts when necessary!

I communicate with my eyes, ears and voice and I am sweet and affectionate.

I am enthusiastic about life, playtime, walks, and training classes.
My favorite place is to nap at my humom's feet when she works on the computer.

I have a home, a family, food, shelter, exercise and mental stimulation. My heart is full. I am loved.

My wish for 2009:
¡¡¡ʞɔɐq ɹnɟ ʎןןǝq ʎɯ ʇuɐʍ ı

I want my belly fur back!


Tagged by Doobie from MT!

November 13th 2008 11:25 am
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Here are the rules of the game!

Each player starts with seven random facts about themselves. Dogs who are tagged, need to post in their Diary the rules & their 7 pawsome facts. Then choose 7 dogs to tag and list their names. Don’t forget to bark them a paw-mail that they have been tagged and to read your Diary, or, send them a fun Rosette announcing they've been tagged!

1. I love agility and didn’t like Rally-O as much
2. I have strong herding instinct (upright, loose-eyed, driver) and talk when I round ‘em up (WOOF!)
3. I dream of snow
4. I’m the best watchdog in the house and I even check the outside perimeter
5. I keep all the birds away, even the owls, hawks and eagles
6. I’m very affectionate and prefer to have a companion, either human or canine
7. My pack instinct is higher than my prey drive

I tagged
• Gigi - Harpur’s Giddy Upp (from CA)
• Mach2 Aslan
• Ellie (from CA)
• Lily (from NJ)
• Addie (from TX)
• Lukas (From NY)
• Fling (from WA)


Recall training success

August 19th 2008 11:12 pm
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Today the front door blew open (yes, literally) and I just mosied along out to the front walkway. I felt kinda self-conscious because I'm wearing this diaper now. (Shh - Lilliana is in heat!). I haven't been in the front yard for a week now. It sure feels like I've been sequestered but then an angel blew a kiss and opened the door for me.

I was no further than 10 steps out the door and I hear Mom call "front"! I bee lined it back inside because I knew what that meant, yesiree bob. It means I'm going to get a generous helping of the yummiest goodies. No leash needed on this puppy.

[Mom wipes her brow and is so thankful for the recall practice and training]


Puppy Agility I graduation next week

August 5th 2008 11:02 pm
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Where did the time go? I've been so focused on lessons and lo and behold, next week is Puppy Agility I graduation. So, that means I need to pick a skill to showcase for my classmates (each of us has to do one thing). So, what should I choose? The list goes on like this: roll over (did this for puppy kindergarten, NEXT); go around (hmmm, don't know that one yet); figure 8 between mom's legs (this would need some work); or, I suppose I could do a fast sit or fast down or... wonder how hard it is to learn high five?

At tonight's class we saw lightning bolts, so class was moved indoors and we skipped practicing on the larger contact equipment. We still got to work on the small contact board, weave entry and did a front cross exercise with two stanchions.

We are looking forward to seeing the puppy crew show off next week. But the biggest news tonight is that we are going to enroll in Puppy Agility II. I am so stoked! Now back to coming up with a trick for next week.


Paw pad relief

July 12th 2008 11:05 am
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Ahhhh. I just got some really nice creamy lotion called Bag Balm for my paw pads. They have been dry and calloused. Mom found it at the store and the label said it was for chapped cow teats. It was in the pet section and she wondered if it would work on paw pads too.

I protested a bit, not wanting my feet touched. When I stopped, I got a yummy dehydrated liver treat and a short but sweet pad massage. For the record, Bag Balm doesn't taste great, so I wouldn't recommend licking it.


Puppy Agility July 2008

July 7th 2008 12:18 pm
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We are in puppy agility now and working on contact equipment. I love to go to class, but I also like the smell of those wood chips on the ground!


I saw a long-nosed snake last Saturday night

July 7th 2008 11:52 am
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It was late Saturday (and dark) when I saw something moving outside the porch door. It moved easily, was low to the ground and didn't seem fazed when I growled and barked. So, I kept tabs on it. Every 10 minutes or so, I'd check and darned if it wasn't still there. Mom did a good job of distracting me with toys. Maybe she was thinking it might have been something bigger like a Bobcat and we should just stay inside.

When we went out to do final rounds, Mom put on my leash to keep me close, just in case. One step out of the door, there it was, a few feet away. Grrr, Grrr, Grrr. There! Mom finally saw what I saw. She said it was a long-nosed snake. She quickly directed me back inside. By the time she rushed inside to get the camera and came back it was gone. I'll remember it though. It had black and white spots on the sides with red and black rectangles on the top and was about 1/2 inch diameter and 16 inches long.

I'm going to be looking under those porch chairs every time I go out.

Whew! Glad that turned out to be a gentle snake and not a rattlesnake.

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