The Journey of Little Rosanne Rosannadanna

Please follow along as my new puppy, Rosanne Rosannadanna, learns all about life, the universe and everything.

Thursday, October 21, 2010



We had a very busy day today!

Rosanne and I traveled to the Gym this morning to teach a one-person class and, as it turned out, that student could not attend class. So we were on our own. I had the camera with me and the crate pieces so we did crate training on video. I did remember to do somewhat shorter sessions; however, she did need to remind me a couple of times. We made great progress - got intentional behavior, added a cue, added in release cue training and worked on pair of opposites training (into the crate and release from the crate).

We also started target stick work using her pink fairy wand target stick. After a few reps, it was clear I was getting open-mouthed touches to the target stick and that I needed to spend some time thinking of how to extinguish the open-mouthed touches. I was capturing her nose touch to the target and one of the ways I thought of to help with this would be to use the "Shedd way" for teaching targets, i.e. the trainer touches the dog's nose with the target. After some reinforcement history has been generated, the trainer then puts the target very near to the nose and lets the animal seek out that reinforcing target contact.

I had a long conversation with someone in the office while Rosanne stayed in her puppy play pen in the main space of the Gym, a good 60 ft or so away. Niiiicccce . . . Quiet puppy, able to be left to her own devices alone in a new place. Thank you, Granma Mary! :)

Later in the day, I returned to the Gym to evaluate a dog for Control Unleashed class. Rosanne and Joey both came with me. For the first time, Rosanne was *not* the dog going into the training center! She stayed in her crate in the van while Joey went to work and she handled it very well.

After the evaluation, I walked her around the parking lot all the way up to the icky stuff along the chain link fence which she very much wanted to visit. She visited the fence line and its debris, then checked out some piles of shop waste material and we called it good. A nice scent-hound experience! We returned to the van and did a round of Name Game before loading up and going home. It's really important to slip in as much Name Game as you can during the course of whatever you do with your puppy.

When we arrived home, there was a little daylight left so I put Joey and Rosanne off leash into the big back yard, again hoping their might be dog play happening. It was quite hilarious. Joey ran big circles enjoying himself, Rosanne ran after him but it was not at all mutual or interactive. Joey did give her quite a work-out.

We did lots of Name Game calls back to me (for both dogs) with nice rounds of mutual treats. Joey responds to "RosANNE!" - hah, no issues there, ha ha! There was a great deal of running and as a result Rosanne totally crashed in her play pen when we came inside. Nothing like a tired puppy to end a day on a really good note. :)

For evening TV time, we did a lot of Eye Contact work with my hand holding the treat on the back of the couch (Doggie Zen - Attention). She figured it out right away that looking at my hand produced nothing while whipping her eyes back to mine produced /treat. She's sooooo smart! :)

I also did a few nose touches to my digital recorder which were not met with open-mouthed touches.

One really cool thing happened in couch time: Marcus (9 year old Havanese, low confidence) was on the back of the couch and Rosanne was pestering him to play by jumping up at him with both feet landing on him. Marcus gave her ONE HECK OF A GOOD CORRECTION! It was loud, intense, assertive, quick and over with. This, for Marcus, is a miracle because, in his lack of confidence, he would normally "attack" the offender and not let up. This time it was perfectly appropriate adult dog communication. I praised Marcus like crazy. He looked at me as if he thought I was nuts. I don't think he was expecting to be praised for that!


  1. Thanks for the idea on correcting open mouth bites on the target stick. I couldn't figure out how to stop my puppy from doing that!

  2. What are you and the pup up to these days?