Letter from Kona
This month, I am continuing my focus on fluency in all my behaviors. I might also learn to deliver stuff to others, not just the person handling me. No biggie, just another sound to attach to a behavior. Along the same line, I am learning “hug” on another person. Snuggle too.
I am good at laying down snuggle, love my trainer and this behavior is really just a comfy nap. In fact, it’s now the last thing we do at night. I still spend the night on my bed. I am hoping my ultimate person wants me on their big comfy bed all night. Here, the bed is tiny and there is no room for my trainer to move when we are doing snuggle.
i am working on doing belly up a lot more. First thing this morning I did it first time with one cue. Then I had breakfast, gave him my bowl when asked, and then napped on this bed for an hour. Then at 6:30am we went outside to potty and then his breakfast…interesting order.
I have the most fun wrestling with my trainer yep, right in his lap. I roll around, make all kinds of wrestling noises and my tail goes crazy.
My favorite toy I think currently is my purple squirrel but that’s mostly because I get food out of it, Other than that it’s my trainer.
Wags and Kisses,
December 2023 -- Letter from Kona
This month, I am primarily focused on fluency in all my behaviors. That includes NOT sniffing the ground. I had a little issue with that during my weekend in Vegas while I was at a trade event representing GDA/TLC.
Some other things I am learning include my retrievals. The next thing is delivering stuff to people, which is funny because my trainer worked at UPS. Well, he says Christmas is a good time to learn delivery.
I am good at my "wave" and "nudge" are awesome. As to "put" I put stuff into milk crates and even a 5-quart bowl. Twice a day I carry my food bowl downstairs, "drop it", "tug" a big, heavy, spring-loaded door open, and then pick my bowl back up. Then I give it to my trainer so he can make my next meal. I get Omega Threes with my food. My coat is awesome!!!
I have the most fun playing both by myself and with my trainer. We have two new dogs in our kennel and they are kinda fun.
My favorite toy is an indoor chuck-it ball that is still together. I don't get to tear at it and if/when I chew, I get my Bene bone.
Wags and Kisses,
September 2023 -- Letter from Kona
This month, I am primarily focused on getting my "nudge" going. It's where I jab my personal trainer with my nose. Now it's until he says my name, then I stop and get all kinds of kibble and peanut butter. I still haven't decided if I like this one. It seems kind of mean but my personal trainer gets all excited the more and harder I push so I'm working on it
I'm still working on "snuggle". Sometimes I lay on his right side and sometimes on the left. Other times I'm in front of him when he has his leg crossed sitting on the ground. He's also still trying to get me to wave. Today he tried getting me to put my foot on a little foam disk. Oh, and that was after he put us both out in front of the whole class!! Not cool.
I am good at play! My trainer taught me to run to the other end of the room, turn to look at him, sit and when he says "catch" I catch what he throws! Even a dong frisbee! The big dummy told the girls so that might not be continuing. As far as behaviors, I'm improving all across the board.
I am still struggling with the wave! Just not into it...we'll see.
I have the most fun when I get to play with this dog named Marley. She's a blast! Sometimes I'll decide to de-stress by chewing on my play bone. Then, Marley will just walk up to me and put her whole mouth around my neck. Then she just wrenches me around until I stop chewing and play. Yes, I'm frequently covered in dog spit.
My favorite toy is my indoor chuck-it ball or my neighbor's torn-apart indoor chuck-it ball. Racquet balls too but I don't have a tennis ball right now.
Wags and Kisses,
August 2023 -- Letter from Kona
My trainer might be crazy! I'm serious, get this he has me running laps!! I'm a princess and princesses DO Not run! Well, maybe to a sale at Petco for some treats. Oh, maybe that's what he's getting me ready for? He does talk about racing and bass pro shops a lot. Maybe they've got something coming up. I am improving, today we ran 5 laps, and walked one. Then he handed me off to his assistant and we did 3 more (1/4 mile each ) laps with a bunch of behaviors.
Well, my wave is slightly better. I'm learning "nudge" and I'm also doing more with picking up stuff. Yesterday, my trainer set up an obstacle course including stuff for me to stand on and jump on. Then he gives me chuck-it stick to get and carry around. I sit, stand, jump on all while holding the foam 'stick". I don't chew it or anything. He has a big indoor play ball and he even let's me take it outside when we walk...very cool.
I am really good at catch..No really!! He throws the ball from a foot away to 20 feet away and I catch it! Frisbee? YEP. I bring it to him after I catch it and he throws it. Sometimes he says "back up" and I do. I can get stuff almost 6 feet off the ground. He says if I get to be a kid's service dog they are going to love me!!!
I am still struggling with my wave but I blame my trainer. He wants me to straighten my paw during the wave. When I don't he pats me anyway. I think he sometimes gives in cause I'm a princess! He needs to stop though...I'll tell him someday, not today, but someday. Maybe he'll come up with some cool trick to get me to do it.
I have the most fun when well I want to say playing but that obstacle course was super fun and I get kibble. We got some new dogs here again and one is good at playing. Marley is one of the new ones and she is one of my favorite playmates.
My favorite toy is probably the indoor chuck it ball. I don't get to chew on it very much but it's fun to chase or catch in the air. When I start chewing my trainer gives me my bone but he also lets me swap mine with other dogs because he knows the best bone is the one the other dog has.
Wags and Kisses,
June 2023 -- Letter from Kona
This month I am primarily focused on my "wave" and "back up" are getting much better. I'm doing "lap" all around the yard but my "wait" needs work. With "wave" I lift my right paw and move it around. I'm not yet straightening my paw though. We'll just keep working on it and having fun.
I'm doing more with my squirrel. Sometimes while I'm walking with it he say's "sit". I sit and continue to hold the squirrel. He tells me we are going to work with other items soon. He want my snuggle to get better before me add more stuff.
I am good at manners. At chow and in the cell, when food drops I leave it alone. My trainer drops food alot. Sometimes even large pieces of Italian sausage. It lands right in front of me. I look at him and when he see's me look at him I get food. Sometimes he picks up the food right away and sometimes he leaves it. I end up getting the item later when I do some work.
I am struggling with my "wave". I've got to extend my paw on some standard behaviors. I'm working on duration. My endurance is improving and that is helping.
I have the most fun when I'm playing. I like playing with other dogs and/or my trainer. Catch and tug are my two favorites.
My favorite toy is a 3-pointed soft silicone. It's good for tugging and I can even chew on it.
Wags and Kisses,
WHAT A GREAT DAY FOR THE BEACH!
DOG DAYS OF SUMMER ARE EXHAUSTING.
April 2023 -- Letter from Kona
This month I am primarily focused on learning to do what I know better, or instance I can "stand" and stay in place when my trainer is close but with distance I sometimes move towards him. To remind me that "stand" is a stationary position he brings out the platforms. Other times he just starts close and then adds distance. I'm/We are going through a similar process with all of my known behaviors. I will eventually do them with other people.
Some other things that I am learning include I get to jump on stuff more. I even get to put my front half on my trainer when he says, "lap". He even gives me kibble. Today, Sunday, April 16th I was getting sausage for picking up my purple squirrel. He puts food in it everytime I go in my kennel, now he gives me sausage just for getting in, bringing it and giving it to him....wait a minute....I think he's going to do something with this. I'll let you know later.
I'm good at "lap" and "ta-da" (a bow). I've been "ta-daing" for people even when I'm up on a table. Oh that reminds me, I did "belly up" on top of a table! So cool. I was not scared a bit, my trainer had me!
I am struggling with always doing what I'm asked. Sometimes when he's standing by my kennel and calls me I don't want to go. I mean he never leaves me in there during the day except for nap time, even then I'm out before most of the other dogs, so I don't know why I don't go.
I have the most fun when either either "lap" or "belly up". Playing catch is pretty fun too. Jumping on tables is pretty awesome, especially when I do 10-in-a-row with sit, down, stand and ta-da on top of the tables. I'm getting crazy muscles!
My favorite toy is gotta be the racquetball still. But, today the chuck-it ball was pretty fun. Well we did have a new jolly ball the ladies brought. I ate part of the handle and had cool colored poop!
Wags and Kisses,
March 2023 -- Letter from Kona
Quick Awesomeness update! I learned a new behavior and I'm awesome at it! The cue I'm given is "ta-da". The behavior I do is a bow. I can do it with my elbows on the floor and my head down. I get lots of kibble while I'm doing the behavior. I'm pretty good at keeping the position until my trainer says "stand". I even performed it for a novel handler today.
Some other stuff I am learning includes "jump on". Yep, I get to jump on stuff, but only when told. I'm getting better at that part. My trainer sometimes walks up to stuff and I'm thinking, "Am I going to jump on this?" Sometimes he says, "under". I go under and lay down but sometimes he says, "jump on" and I do. It's a lot of fun and my tail wags. Then even on top of tables, he has me do puppy push-ups. That's sit, down, and stand.
I am good at lots of stuff but "ta-da" gets me crazy amounts of kibble. I do great with the platforms and the disc work is improving. On the disc, I just shift my hind legs around as I pivot with my front paws on the disc.
I am struggling with remembering what is "side" and what is "heel". We do a lot of work on that. Work, play, repeat but he makes work pretty fun. I do get tired though but he gets me through it.
I have the most fun when I'm playing. He has be climb up in his lap, roll over, belly rubs...he says "Are you doing belly up?" and gives me kibble. I think that's an upcoming behavior. He even files my claws like that! Pretty cool. Yesterday was my trainer's birthday and we spent all day doing dog stuff. Sunday was Nascar and playtime!
My favorite toy is a little blue racquetball. I'm a great catcher. Then I come and sit and drop it in his hands. I think he's preparing me for more behaviors with our play!
Wags and Kisses,