Monday, April 28, 2014

4/28/14 advanced

focus focus focus.
Great work tonight everyone!!!
here's what we did..
'heel" position
sitting at intersections
fast/slow/normal walking speeds.
down from walking
working around distractions

next class we'll start session with focus work such as
touch (video will be posted of me teaching Henry the touch)
down with relaxing massage

please email me if you have any specific skills you need to learn or work on.

4/28/14 puppy

Hi everyone! I don't know about you but I was incredibly happy to have a dry yard to play in tonight. Thank you again to Rebecca for graciously offering her yard for us to learn in.  With the added distraction of our new student Henry, the escapee from next door and a week off of class due to weather I have to commend you all for your dogs good behavior. Remember, they're still learning.

We reviewed our loose leash walking skills as well as down, sit and come. We introduced Look and talked about the Touch command.  I'll put together a video of me teaching Henry the touch command for you to review.

Next class we will  learn "wait" and continue perfecting our existing skills.


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

You're a PUPPY not a Jumping Jack!!!

so some puppies are great at keeping their paws on the floor. Others? Not so much.

here's the basics.
First, you need to teach your dog to sit.
Once you've done that you can start training the "OFF" command.

Whenever you see your dog coming towards you, ask them for a sit.  When they sit you can pet them. If they get up, tell them no and tell them to sit again.  In my world, SIT means "please".

If they do not sit (which they most likely will not) and they jump up on you, say "OFF!" and twist your body so they lose their balance and fall to the floor.  As soon as they're on the floor tell them to sit. 

This process works a LOT better if you understand my methods of Lure, Mark, Reward & Release.

If you don't have the basic understanding of this, give me a call and we can discuss your training needs.
If you're not in my town I would be happy to help you find a trainer that uses positive reinforcement methods.

Monday, April 21, 2014


aaahhhhh spring showers
again....So we've cancelled class tonight because I think we can all agree we don't want to stand outside in the soggy crappy weather again.  You all were TROOPERS to come out last week.  I won't make you do that again. 
HOWEVER, I hope you all enjoy your evening off at home with your pup and your families. 
Puppies, remember to keep doing our name game, sit, down, come and walking skills.  Touch was our new one. If anyone has questions about that I'll try to video myself teaching Strega the touch command in a little while. 
-soggy but still cheerful, Shanthi

Saturday, April 19, 2014

4/18 basic

Hi there. What an interesting class last night.  So here's what we went over.
walk with me., come, sit, down, stay and go to your place

touch and hulahoop tricks.

I know it took a while for Jasper to calm down long enough to focus but I'm impressed with how you didn't lose your cool with him and kept working until he got his attention back.

Paulie was not too interested but remember, he WAS able to do pretty much everything you asked even though he was stressed out.

I'll remember to put the calming signal dvd.

The touch is for the beginning of control/focus when they're both being jumpy. You'll ask for the touch and reward that instead of jumping. Also ask for other behaviors when they're being inappropriate (over anxious OR exuberant).

ok. walking reminders. In the video I took of Jasper working I was pointing out the 3 ways to stay in contact with your dog (mouth, eyes and ears) so start with lots of food, eye contact and praise. slowly reduce the rate of reinforcement with food then reduce the talking and then the eye contact.  NOTE: please know that you should be still rewarding with all 3 at random intervals. Keep your eye on your dog so you can mark the correct position or when they lift their head and look at you to check in.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

BASIC 4/11/14 notes

Hello there!
Last friday we practiced loose leash walking, sit, down and come when called "recalls".

You both did really well with your existing cues. Remember to cue your dog only one time.

We also talked about luring your dog into the heel position as p ractice for walking through crowded areas like the farmers market. When making turns remember to look, talk and offer treats where you want your dog to be. If you're turning into your dog drop your shoulder back a bit and lure them slightly behind you.

Be sure when you practice your stay command that you really utilize your release cue. If your dog breaks out of its down command before you release him, immediately take him back to where he was and re-set him in his stay position. Reduce the amount of distance and time you want him to stay and release him.

I'm hoping you started practicing handling your dogs feet while offering something really yummy. I'll bring Strega tomorrow to show how I clip her nails.

What tricks would you like to learn?
Sorry this took a while

Monday, April 14, 2014

4/14/14 puppy class notes

Thanks to everyone for coming out in the cold!!! I know we ran through class very quickly so here's the overview of the skills we covered.
name game, sit, come and walking.
Down, don't forget to lure to the floor first then cover your lure as you move slowly away from your pup.
1.Smash a piece of food between your fingers and mark when your dog touches your hand to get the treat.
2. start saying "touch", show your dog the hand, mark and reward.
3. say touch, show hand, mark the touch, reward with the other hand.

class notes, advanced 4/14/14

so i thought this would be a good place to post all my notes etc from class for students to review.
Here's what we covered tonight in the cold with Odin and Chino.  We braved the cold and talked primarily about heel position.
These tidbits are for while you are in heel position which is quite different than the loose leash walking skill.

look and talk at the loction you want your dog to be
when you're doing a turn into your dog  remember to drop your dog side shoulder back and give your dog a cue that you're about to turn.
maybe drop your hand down to their face to catch their attention with a treat until they get the hang of this new version of the game. The goal is to have them drop slightly behind you as you turn into them.
Make sure your leash is slack. Rely on other forms of communication like your voice, eyes etc.

down while heeling:
be sure to slow your body down before you cue the down. 

Thursday, April 3, 2014


I'm happy to say I've got my website up and running!!!  It's a work in progress and done by little ole' me so please forgive any grammatical errors.

check out

I'll be posting again soon.
Classes are starting April 7th and I still have a few spots open.
give me a call if you're interested in joining.

Puppy, Monday 6pm
Advanced, Monday 7pm
Basic Friday 6pm.