Thursday, October 8, 2009

Dog haiku & training odds and ends

Remember writing haiku in the third grade? This is so much better than anything I ever came up with then back then. (Thanks, RS, for sharing)

I am your best friend,

Now, always, and especially
When you are eating.
— Author unknown

Phoenix and I have been working hard on stays. One afternoon, I parked the van in front of our house after work, got Phoenix, put him on a sit/stay on the patio, put myself back in the van and drove off (okay, just around to the garage). I was sure he would break to run the fenceline after me but he didn't.

Then I put him on a down/stay and played tug with Jamie. THAT broke him. We worked through it.

He's done some sits on the bed while I ran around the house (literally) squealing and clapping with Jamie chasing me. It is truly a good thing we do not have super close neighbors.

We worked heeling along the edge of the bean field by the house. He was obsessed with looking for cats in the beans. There weren't any but that didn't stop him from looking. Great, our training session was being derailed by phantom cats. We worked through that, too.

Tonight on the way to teaching my Utility class, I hope to stop and work heeling in front of Kohl's. They have wonderful wide sidewalks and a fair amount of after-work foot traffic. And it's Iowa City, for heaven's sake, so nobody gets too excited about another person doing something weird in public.

I just won't go back to Coralridge Mall where they DID ask me and Jamie to leave a couple of years ago. The security guy was very polite about it but I wonder if I'd been training a pomeranian if he would have even bothered. Still, that's the ONLY place I've ever been kicked out of. The outlet mall at Williamsburg is great and one of our frequent training haunts. Oh sure, they notice us, but the store managers just come out to watch and then ask if I can train their kids and husbands.

The only bad thing about this time of year is the cold and dark are nibbling away at my "go someplace new every week" after work outdoor training sessions. Pretty soon, I'll need gloves and earmuffs and then my nose will start running and that's when I'll call it quits for the winter and we'll hibernate and train indoors.


  1. In my house it's the cat who writes haiku. But perhaps you and Phoenix might enjoy this recent poem from Taz the Terv

    Stomping on Toys in the Early Morning
    (with apologies to Robert Frost)

    Whose toy this is, I think I know.
    I found it 'neath the sofa, though,
    And now the nine points of the law
    Are resting underneath my toe.

    My sleeping mom must thing it odd
    That other's toys must needs be pawed
    And chomped upon to make them squeak
    Before the sun is yet abroad.

    She gives a muffled little shriek
    And moves her mouth as if to speak.
    I think I hear "Give me a break!"
    Although the tones are faint and weak.

    I'd give it up, just for your sake,
    But I have squeakers yet to break,
    And toys to squeak before you wake,
    And toys to squeak before you wake.

  2. Hibernate??? I thought you LIKED this time of year!!!!

  3. Look at her back pedal as soon as she has to be OUT in the COLD with her huge box of tissues!! LOL Maybe you should find other places to get "kicked out of"!! Obviously our dogs behave better than most people's husbands or children!! Well...usually!