Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Oh, the difference a week can make.

In a post from last week, Feelings, I related the angst that occurs when a dog and trainer team performs at less than their best in the course of a public demonstration. This week, I'm proud to report, just the opposite occurred and Belle was at her adolescent apex!

Our class was at the training center, but we had lots of visitors. A dog behavior expert, several Helping Paws staff members and a class of young adults working on a school project studying non-profit groups were on hand to observe the Monday Night class. And all the dogs were in fine form. Even learning the new cue of "under" using a wheel chair didn't phase them. In fact, that was the highlight of my night. The cue is given with the trainer sitting in the wheel chair and the dog in the "behind" position (directly behind the chair). The trainer tells the dog "under" and the dog is supposed to crawl under the chair and drop. Belle did it right the first time! It was so cute to see her head resting on her paws looking up at me as I peeked down through my knees. I get the giggles just thinking about it.

Who needs food for a treat? The feeling that comes from dog and trainer working together as a team is like nothing I've ever felt. "Under"stand?

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