Choc Charlie's new training log...

Discussion in 'Your Training Logs' started by JulieT, Aug 21, 2015.

  1. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    Heh, I love how he looked in your bag before picking up the last one :D

    Nice simple exercise. I'll have to work on this with mine. I've been using the approach of closing the angles between two dummies on a retrieve but I think what you're doing here is an easier starting point.
     
  2. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    He definitely looked at the bag and thought "well the pile is in there now". :D

    I think lining to a dummy and ignoring other dummies is a different skill from understanding you sort out one dummy from a pile, pick it up and leave the others. This confused Charlie! :D It was handy that he doesn't drop the dummy on the click because I could start by clicking his teeth round one dummy. When I did this at a distance, I went back to clicking on the pick up, and it was really striking. He would pick one up, and the click would make him whip round rather than dither over the other dummies. I didn't get it on video, unfortunately, but it was cool. :)
     
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  3. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    You put me to shame! I really must work harder. I never thought of doing the pile so close to me, will try that in a moment! I have had two very exciting dummies put out on the lawn, about 18" apart and clicked as he picked up the first one he came to, rather than clicking when he got back to me and that seemed to be more successful.

    It is pouring with rain here, so dummy pile will have to be indoors on the carpet!
     
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  4. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Me too :D:D

    And I notice you have one with tails :eek:
     
  5. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    I had a go in the living room this morning, perfect! So went out and put two dummies down in a line which guarantees he picks up the first and then goes on to the second, but he didn't :) Of course the problem isn't solved, but we have seen a chink of light!
     
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  6. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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  7. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Oh dear, it's all a bit quiet on the training log front! That's no good.....:)

    I've mainly been working on 'operation playdate' trying to get Charlie to return to his normal self around strange, male dogs - which I think I've just about managed. :) More on that later.

    Last week we went to a Scentwork workshop. I was pretty thrilled with Charlie. :)

    Charlie doesn't settle well in a busy hall with other dogs, people etc. He doesn't make a fuss, or bark etc (even if other dogs are barking) but he stays alert, very active, and he'll watch presentations and lectures! Other dogs seem to flop down and go to sleep, but not Charlie.

    I've worked hard on my settle cue, but haven't managed to transfer it to this kind of environment. Very probably because I do almost no training inside in halls and barns etc. So this time, I took his travel crate, and he did 30 mins on his mat, then I popped him away with a kong and he settled. He was still and calm (although not settled, he was alert and watching) on his mat when other dogs were working. Which I thought was a success and I thought I managed his arousal levels well using the crate. At clicker expo, I'd taken him to the back of the hall when other dogs were playing with toys etc. So progress, however small....:)

    As far as the scentwork went, I thought he was the best of all of the dogs there! :) Not that I'm biased or anything. :)

    First, the dogs were assessed for drive etc. No surprise Charlie was in the catnip group, with other dogs not motivated by toys etc learning different skills searching for food - we were divided into two groups depending on whether a dog would search for a scent rather than food. Charlie needed no other reward than the chance to search again, which was really lovely and he was super keen - but he also listened well, and I could give him directions. He was pretty fearless in barging behind chairs, and pulling out boxes, and certainly needed no help from me in opening boxes - hah, I knew all that enrichment box training would come in handy! :D:D:D Charlie certainly knows how to rip open a cardboard box to recover a toy! Strangely, no other dog would do that, and the handlers opened the boxes for them.

    I was also thrilled with him working off lead in a hall with loads of other dogs. His attention stayed on me, and I didn't have any trouble keeping his attention on the game, he wasn't distracted by the other dogs while he was working at all.

    It was a long drive to the place for the workshop, but great facilities, and I think I'll sign up for the next one. The next step is all about directed searches, and search patterns, moving it on from just a find it game (which was more or less what we were doing, although we were hiding things quite well by the end of the day - the catnip was inside two or three boxes etc. or hung up, higher than nose height.

    All the dogs were completely wiped out by 3pm! It was really very tiring for them!
     
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  8. Cath

    Cath Registered Users

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    Well done Charlie :)
     
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  9. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Strangely Julie, this has me a picture of Charlie in an airport "opening" a suitcase (none too delicately) looking for some miscellaneous forbidden item :D

    What a good boy Charlie - and well done Julie.
    Would be interesting pitting the two Charlies up against each other (what do you reckon? @charlie ?)
     
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  10. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

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    Just off to get some cardboard boxes :D
     
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  11. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

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    Sounds like you had a good day, where did you have to travel to? Will the next class be outside Julie? :)
     
  12. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    It was Cambridge - so not too far, but unless I wanted to drive round the outside via the M25 it involved a very early start to drive through the middle of London. I just got up early, then found a service station where I could get breakfast, and Charlie could have a poo. :rolleyes: It was fine...

    The place I went to was lovely. A big barn, with a non slip floor (which I really like for Charlie, I hate having him on slippery floors) and 8 acres of outside space really thoughtfully divided into secure paddocks eg on lead paddock, off lead paddock, dogs needing space paddock. It made for a relaxing time, because you could always have your dog somewhere suitable without worrying he would bother other dogs etc. Although even so, I did have an annoying incident where I asked another dog owner if it was ok to walk by her dog (she was sat in the entrance to the barn) and she said yes, only then her dog lunged and barked at Charlie. I was super annoyed because it scared Charlie. I got a bit cross, and she told me her reactive dog needed space! Splutter.....! :D

    For those who might want to have a go, session one went like this:

    1. You need a defined 'search area' - the dog has to stay in an area you are working in, you need this later.
    2. Throw in a catnip scented toy, let the dog see it. (Charlie didn't need the throwing bit, we dropped it)
    3. Throw a toy behind something, eg a chair or barrier (we skipped this bit for Charlie)
    4. Direct the dog to 'find it' in the search area without him seeing the toy
    5. Repeat, with the toy hidden behind chairs etc.
    6 Repeat again, but with the toy hidden in a box - at this point, you need to start directing the dog - this is not a free 'find it' game, the dog needs to start looking where you tell him
    7 Repeat again, with lots of other, empty boxes, cutting down the time the dog 'free searches' and starting to direct the dog where to look nearly right away
    8 And so on, hanging the toy up high, putting the toy inside two boxes, inside boxes stuck on the back of chairs, on a shelf so the dog has to stand on a chair to reach, adding two rows of chairs, rows of buckets, and so on.

    The point of the exercise is not to have your dog legging it round searching randomly, but to have your dog looking where you ask him to look because you need this later as the scent gets smaller and smaller, the search area bigger and bigger and more complicated until you can find a tiny scrap of catnip in a warehouse etc.

    We did move on to searching outside, but doing directed searches. So we weren't searching the environment, we were searching in a search pattern with the environment as a distraction. Does that makes sense? So, for example, we were asking the dogs to search a line of buckets instead of sniffing the hedgerow.

    This isn't tracking, by the way, this isn't about following a ground scent - it's about directed searches to find a item in a complicated environment - a warehouse, a train etc.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2016
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  13. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    I don't think anyone would appreciate slobbery Choc Charlie rooting through their smalls in a suitcase! The catnip mouse was very slobbery after a few goes! :D:D:D
     
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  14. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

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    This is really interesting Julie, is there any chance it could be copied over to your original Scent Work thread?

    Do you treat Charlie for finding the toy or is this not allowed? Thanks :)
     
  15. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Okay.....just for you. :)
     
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  16. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

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    Aw thank you :)
     
  17. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    As I've been training Betsy, I've been training Charlie. Everything Betsy gets to do, Charlie gets to do. Down to the last fish chew or wrapped up enrichment parcel. :rolleyes: Charlie is not missing out.

    Today, I did recall past a food bowl with Betsy, so I picked up Charlie's zen bowls for the same exercise with him out in the field. Was lots of fun, and he did really well, I thought. :)

    [vid]

    [​IMG]Charlie zen bowls by julieandcharlie julieandcharlie, on Flickr
     
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  18. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    I was just going to say (when watchng your video) that I wouldn't reward Charlie for going so close to the ball in the bowel and then you didn't reward him:D His next recall was excellent, no deviation toward the ball (just a little glimpse), so he learnt :)
     
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  19. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    It was interesting watching the vids back (I had more vids than just the ones I posted of course). It was much easier for him to ignore the bowl if I was at a slight angle, even a tiny bit of an angle, and so the distance to the bowl widened as he ran.

    I'm not sure these exercises do much in general for Charlie's impulse control, but they are fun and interesting. It was much, much harder for him with a ball in the bowl than food! :)
     
  20. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    I did it with my two and a friend's dog this afternoon, they all loved doing it. Friend's dog who is very food orientated found it very tempting, but we won in the end with perserverence and patience :)
     
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