Tuesday, March 01, 2005

By Jove I've got it

My person has been working with me over the last couple of months to learn to shut a cabinet door by pushing it with my nose (initial command for that is "touch"). The problem for me has been that I also know about shutting drawers by hitting them with my feet (initial command for that was "push"--that's a flyball command, too).

So, I'm a kind of pawsy gal and think it's a lot more efficient to shut things with my feet, so, while I would touch the cabinet door with my nose, I made it close with my feet.

My person was pretty patient--only rewarding me for closing the door with my nose. And if I just wasn't getting it, she'd back up and reward me for just touching the door with my nose adn once I remembered to close it with my nose, she'd go back to only rewarding that and eventually moving to a variable reinforcement (click here if you want to read more about this kind of dog training or read the book "don't shoot the dog").

Anyway, today I did it right right off the bat. My person could even send me from about 6 ft. out and I'd go close the door with my nose. I'm pretty cool, huh?

So, what'd I learn today?
With enough repetitions and the right kind of encouragement, just about anything is possible.

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