Training the dog

This evening we had our second session with Mandy, our dog trainer.

Over the last couple of weeks we have been practising the things that Mandy taught us. She encouraged us to establish and keep Toby to a routine for meals, exercise and to use the dog crate at regular times during the day as well as at night.

This all seems to be going well.  The crate gives him his own quiet space and he knows what to expect.  The bonus for us is that he is becoming house trained – the little accidents are now few and far between (thank goodness)

This evening we worked on using the whistle for recall.  For me this is one of the most important aspects of a well trained dog.  Walking on the Downs (without a dog) over the years I have lost count of the number of times I have seen people getting very frustrated, shouting their dog’s name over and over again, while the said pooch completely ignores them or runs in the opposite direction – cringe.

Toby is a terrier and naturally likes to sniff and chase things.  This means that we have to work hard now on getting him to associate good things with coming back to us when he hears the whistle.  At the moment he is just a baby so he is still looking for protection.  But later on chasing after another dog or a squirrel will be extremely tempting and unless the recall has become automatic we won’t stand a chance of getting him back!

So, like many things in life it seems, we need to put the work in now to reap the rewards later.  Let’s hope so!

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