Good Dog! Blog: Bodie Month 2

By: Laura Sarvinski (Bodie's Trainer) 

This month has been a big month for Bodie! I was away at team training for a week while my trainee Good Dog Yellow graduated! During that time Bodie stayed with my mom and dad and had a lot of fun! When I returned from San Diego Bodie received his final DHPP shot and now we are walking on field trips!

We took our first field trip this week to the local pharmacy that is down the street from us. We worked on walking on leash in the neighborhood and he is a natural! We came across a scary fire hydrant but quickly learned that it wasn't all that scary and we took a picture with it.

Now that he is walking on the ground he is seeing the world in a whole new way so exposing him to as many things as possible is very important. Bodie did wonderful inside the pharmacy. He is very food motivated and wants to please so badly that he pays attention to me and ignores other distractions which is great! We spent about 10 minutes in the pharmacy just walking around and practicing commands like Sit, Down, Wait, Shake and Touch.

We have been working a lot on walking nicely on leash and not pulling. Bodie is a natural and is not a puller, he likes to just prance right next to me! We are still working on basics like Sit, Down, Turn, Touch, Shake, Here, Wait and Roll. We are working on holding commands like Sit and Down until he is released so that he learns that when he is in a sit or down he is supposed to stay in that position and not pop back up immediately. We are also working a lot on "Go In" which tells him to go under a table and lay down. We are working on this so he will be ready for when we go to a restaurant for the first time!

 

 

Bodie has hit the Juvenile Period which is 4-6 months old. In this stage Bodie is most influenced by his trainer so teaching him new commands and appropriate behaviors is really important at this stage. Continuing to get him out in the world and exposing him to new people, objects, noises and even new well behaved dogs is really important for his growth and development.

Bodie is also hitting his second fear period which means that continued positive experiences with people and places is very important in order to prevent any fears from developing. One thing I am doing as a trainer is making sure to stay positive and confident, even if Bodie is scared by something. For example when he was scared of the fire hydrant, I made sure to stay positive so that I could show him it was all ok! I didn't pull him or force him to go up to the hydrant. I simply sat by it and gave him treats and tons of praise. He came closer and eventually he came all the way up and sniffed the hydrant and he got tons of treats and love!

Another fun thing that is happening is that Bodie is losing his puppy teeth and getting his adult teeth! This means that he is chewing more than he has so it is important he has lots of appropriate dog toys to chew on and that he is not allowed to chew on people's hands.

 

 

To learn more about Bodie and The Drake Center’s involvement with Good Dog! Autism Companions, visit our fundraising page, here.

 

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