Now that I've had the baby and I'm properly mobile for the first time in a few months, it's time to get back into training Ella. I've been a bit all over the place in the last month or two so I've spent a bit of time working out the key areas for us to focus on in the coming months. The following are made up of formal exercises we are struggling with at training as well as practical bits and pieces for everyday life: 1. Maintaining a loose lead near distractions. Ella's loose lead walking is generally very good but she struggles around distractions, especially other people and dogs. Prior to having the baby, we had progressed to walking past people calmly, as long as I used lots of treats. I've had to take a step backwards with this now that I have the pram so we've gone back to moving to the side, putting the brake on the pram and stepping away, before getting Ella into a sit and 'watch me' as the distraction(s) pass. Then treats of course. She is good around some distractions but some are still too exciting so this will take time before we move to the next step. 2. Drop and drop stays. We've always struggled with this one at training but we'd been putting quite a bit of work into it and we were starting to see improvement. Unfortunately this one has regressed due to my lack of training. The main issue is that Ella will drop when ask but generally stands immediately after. I've had more success if I ask her to drop, crouching as I do the hand movement, and remain in a crouch beside her. Hopefully I can start with this and slowly move towards a standing position next to her. I also think that I need to start asking for a drop in more situations as I always seem to ask for a sit (e.g. before crossing the road, before meals, before going though doors, before releasing off lead for a play etc.). I believe the drop stay will come in time once we've improved the drop. 3. Stand for examination. Ella can now perform this exercise (woo hoo) but we are a very long way from proofing it. Honestly I think the main thing we need to do here is practice, practice, practice. Lots of different people and places. 4. Nail clipping. I think we'll be working on this one forever. We have made some progress but we still seem so far from being able to trim her nails. We have just bought a nail file and the worlds supply of sardines so we'll keep working on this one. There are hundreds of other things we could work on but I think these are the top of the list at the moment.