Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Marshall solves another problem

Yesterday Marshall tried to get me to play by putting his toy in the bathtub. Well, I was busy getting ready for work and I told him he would just have to figure out how to get it himself.

He mustered up the courage and got his toy. Of course he got lots of praise.

Now I can't get him out of the bathtub!

Another fun search thing...Yesterday I was mowing the yard. When I went around front he went in and out the doggie door to watch me out the front window. When I finished and returned to the back yard to sit and rest. You could tell he was looking for his toy for me to play. Again, I told him he would just have to find it. He searched the back yard circling several times. Went inside...back outside to search the yard again. I kept telling him "search".

By now it was getting rather dark.

One more time he went inside, long enough for me to wonder just what he might be up to.

Here he comes out the doggie door with his toy! He found it in the dark and didn't give up until he found it.

His reward? Playtime...and of course some directed jumping and go outs.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Marshall makes friends

I was walking Marshall in the neighborhood last night. We met a dog that usually leads or sometimes follows us. Although he barked, he quickly sat and I do believe he was actually wanting to be friendly!

When we met again on the back side of the walking loop, Marshall just looked at the dog and kept on walking!


Monday, September 14, 2009

Teacher or student?

Oh, Marshall...He makes me laugh. He is so competitive for attention between my other dog.

Tonight I was working with my dog on scent articles (pick the one I touched out of a pile) and Marshall thought it would be a good idea to put his toy in the middle of the pile. He did just like I did...put something in the pile and walk back to where I was standing.

When my dog picked out the proper article and wasn't the least bit distracted by the toy (that used to be his, by the way) and returned it to me Marshall went and got his toy and brought it to me. The problem is, he doesn't let go too easily just yet.

Little does he know that he helped to train my other dog to ignoring distractions and showed me that with focused training, I'll just bet he'll be able to retrieve anything you ask...He can already get his bone from another room if you tell him to "search for his bone."

So much instinct yet to be honed for a purpose. What a joy to watch him develop.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

School is in session

Marshall still has school despite the holiday. Here he is learning to jump according to a direction. Although you can't see another jump on the right hand side, Marshall was seated between two jumps and directed to take the jump on the left.
While this is a fun game now, it builds the foundation for searching for a child. If a child gets lost, a parent can direct the dog which direction to search by pointing.
Marshall still needs to learn "go out" which is another element of a search assignment...go out and search for (child).
Lots of small building blocks for a hopefull future.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Lake Learning

Left: Nikki tries to save me from drowning. Okay maybe she just needed a rest from swimming but either way she is a sweetie.

Left: Don't ask. We were in the sun for a while and poor Calhoun had to deal with our shenanigans. Bless his heart.

Left: Calhoun and Nikki in a battle for the coveted stick of the day.

Left: Nikki- the beach bum