top of page
  • debbieoffleashsoca

Bailey | Shepherd Mix | Glendale, CA | In-Training

MeeThe attached video shows three manners, Door, Food, and Greeting.  This gives you a good idea as to what they should look like so you can practice them with Bailey.

The first one in the video is Door Manners.  Bailey should always wait to be released to go through a door, gate, or any type of barrier.  The most important reason comes to mind because you  literally live in coyote country.  She needs to wait for you to make sure it's safe for her to go outside - whether it be another animal, vehicle, etc.  Another reason is if you have visitors, she should sit / down calmly while you talk to them at the door or invite them in.  

Food Manners is the second one.  I have had her wait up to three minutes.  She has learned she'll get her food, she just has to wait.  IF she breaks from her sit or down, I usually give her an Eh Eh, and she'll sit or lay back down and wait.  

I thought you would enjoy her greeting manners, she wasn't push or jumping up.  She was being very sweet and polite, this is how she should always greet people.  I don't expect her to be able to contain herself on Sunday, but after that I would strongly suggest enforcing this with her.  No greeting until she sits nicely.  t Bailey! She's a 7-month-old Shepherd Mix, from Glendale, CA, who's in our 3-week Board and Train Program. Bailey likes people, likes other dogs, but is pure puppy. She is discovering counter tops, tabletops, and anything that might be on them including pens, handmade items, etc. It's hard for her to abide by the 'no furniture' rule, especially when the zoomies come into play, and they make such great jumping boards across the room. She's at the age that she has started using her teeth when she plays and doesn't realize how painful that can be. Bailey loves to walk and hike with her humans, but if they start running with her, she starts jumping and gnawing on them. These next three weeks will be a 'working vacation' for Bailey as she learns her boundaries, heeling, recall, and place. Basically, to be the best pup she can be. Stay tuned for her 3 Week transformation!


Pupdate 2/10/2024

Welcome to Bailey's first pupdate.  We stopped at a local park so I could get a good first evaluation of what commands she does or doesn't know.  First thing I noticed is that she was just looking around, and unable to focus.

Yes, she did get sick in the car.  It seems to be mainly anxiety.  After the video evaluation, she slept all the way to my place.   Once we got to the house, she started interacting more with me.   She did eat her breakfast along with her antibiotic.  

She had a chance to meet my dogs and then we took a walk to give her a chance to stretch her legs.  Started on the OFF command as she wanted to investigate everything by tasting it.  


Pupdate 2/11/2024

Today we practiced SIT, learned DOWN, and started learning COME TO SIT.  Breakfast time with kibble makes a great time to work on training.  I usually teach down from a sit which still can be tricky.  Bailey, as most dogs, gets up to take steps towards following the hand.  I found I had more success with Bailey if I started between her front legs, and then she followed the hand until she was in a down position.  

The Come to Sit was much trickier because she wouldn't follow my hand with kibble behind me.  Instead I used a trail of kibble for her to follow which took her to my right, around the back, and ended on my left.  At that point I added a Sit and she did it successfully!

We also took short car rides to help with her anxiety in the car.  We are going to be doing a bit of traveling for Meet Ups with other trainers over the next few weeks.  I'd like to help Bailey deal with the anxiety and see I can get her past it.  She did very well with no vomiting although she did have heavy saliva.

We spent some outside time enjoying the sun, although sometimes it was hard to get nice pictures.  She's such a good sport, and also learning that Sit or Down also means stay.  


Pupdate 2/12/2024

Bailey has been really good about telling me when she needs to go outside.  She was sniffing around and then went to the front door.  I have some small cow bells there and the dogs have been really good about sniffing them to tell me they need to go outside.  Bailey is no exception, she does seem to be a little shy about ringing them though.  

A little later in the evening Bailey and Diego were playing until he misbehaved and got sent to his room.  Soon after, Bailey settled herself between my legs and the chair I was sitting in and fell asleep.  I thought it was a good idea and everyone went to bed - early for me.  Bailey proceeded to wake me up about 30 minutes later with a bark.  Potty time!!!  Note to self, Bailey gets one more chance to go outside, no matter what time she went earlier.

Today Bailey and I took a trip out to Rio De Los Angeles Park.  I fed her a handful of food while training this morning and planned to wait for the rest later.  Bailey lasted 20 minutes before she threw up, and then tried to cover it up with the pads that were in the crate.  Attached is a picture of the scratch on her nose and I will be watching that.  

The video shows most of what we worked on today.  She does know Sit but tends to get overwhelmed / lost in watching everything going on around her.  It took a little coaxing her to go down, but each time she did it quicker.  Her Heeling is not spot on but she's getting the idea that she should be walking with me on my left side.  Bailey's Come to Sits are doing much better, although in the video she's busy looking at everything else instead of completing the exercise.  For a full day two, I think she's doing well!

After the video, we took a walk along the path around the park and she promptly sat every time I stopped - when I asked.  She hasn't realized that she needs to do that on her own, it's hard for the dogs to really know when the human is going to actually stop and how.  I usually warn them with a Sit command.  After they hear it, they know to watch and we usually stop together.  

I picked up a smaller crate for Bailey to travel in the car, I'm hoping that will help keep her from moving / bumping around so much in the car.  She ate the rest of her breakfast with the last antibiotic this afternoon.


Pupdate 2/13/2024

No car rides today, Bailey gave me lots of kisses for that one.  Instead we trained around the neighborhood.  The Extended Sits are still a little rough, but each day she gets better.  The picture with the lion behind Bailey has running water coming from the mouth of the lion.  She didn't seem to want to sit there very long.  That particular fountain runs quite often so I'm hoping to get her more comfortable with the sound / environment.

In some Place / Extended Downs, Bailey is very comfortable and others not so much.  The picture with the big house started out with Bailey on a down.  She just didn't seem happy about it but when we switched to an Extended Sit, I had much better luck with pictures.

Come to Sits in the house are cleaning up nicely so I've started working them outside and on our walks.  The environment is still overwhelming, although Bailey's heels are doing well.  At times she's pulling.  At these times I have her leash behind me to help stop her and give her a better idea where she should be walking.  She has started to go into an immediate Sit when I stop without me saying anything.  That's a nice improvement from yesterday.


Pupdate 2/14/2024

Today was one of those days that we did two steps forward and three steps back.  The original plan was to start working on door and food manners, but Bailey needed some work time outside.  I figured I would save the door and food manners for a rainy inside day.

Instead we were at a local park and started working on Heel to Sit, and Come to Sit.  We were able to get some extended sits as well as extended downs, but that was not today's focus.  

I started asking her for more today, like clean heels without sniffing at the ground while we were walking and clean come to sits.  I'm pairing OFF commands with the ecollar, as well as duplicate requests.  OFF is a command that basically is stop doing what you're doing . . . it could be sniffing, it could be eating something, it could be counter surfing.  

The ecollar is a tool that we use to let them know we're talking to them, especially in an environment that they're focusing on because it's new, noisy with new smells and sounds, or something else catches their attention.  It feels like a TENs unit and gets their attention.  By using it paired with an OFF command, it helps cut through all that extra traffic going on in the brain and reconnects you to the dog and what you're asking.  When you're inside or in a less distracting environment, Bailey is more likely to sit or come when asked, but when she's in an environment with so many things going on around her, she's less likely to hear or act on it and needs a little nudging.


Pupdate 2/15/2024

Today's big event was the Santa Monica Pier.  Bailey got her breakfast when we got back so that her stomach was empty and she wouldn't have to deal with throwing it back up.  She did really well at the pier, although we did find a few more things to add to her list.

Bailey is afraid of busy traffic - that's a major issue because you don't want to chance that she runs into the street trying to get away from something else.  She had a chance to see bicycles, skateboards, and luggage today, all causing her to stop working and react to it.  Loud music was an issue, also walking canes.  I will work with as many of these issues as I can.

She would freeze and not be able to complete an exercise, like a Come to Sit, and at times tried to go in the other direction.  When she was given a chance to BREAK, which is time to relax, not work, she chose to try and leave the area.  The GOOD news is that if you work with her, talk to her, support her with praises, she will eventually relax and kick back with you like there wasn't anything wrong to begin with.  That communication is very important to her.  It's funny, because usually you'll hear someone say you're talking too much to the dog, they don't understand you . . . Bailey needs that support from you.

Today's pictures are from various places where we were practicing Place and Unders.  The important part of under is that the dog's whole body has to be under the item - bench / table / etc - to be classified as correct.  This particular picture was taken after coaxing Bailey under the bench, AND coaxing her to lay down.  Once she did that, she decided she did NOT want to come out.  It was nice, cool, and protected.  Things not to allow her to go under - vehicles and anything that might fall on her.

At the pier there are a number of these blue benches along the left side after the merry-go-round.  At first Bailey didn't understand I wanted her to Place on these benches.  After about three tries of getting her up, and then having her in a down for a minute or two, she was more open to using them as a Place.  Because they are in a line I was able to work with Bailey in a drill and begin sending her to them.  We started on one, she Placed for 30 seconds.  I moved her off and onto the second one.  After another 30 seconds, we moved onto the third one.  This one had an object in the way, trash can?  Light post?  Can't remember now but as we went around it I asked her to Place and moved my hand to present the next bench.  The good girl that she is, she went right up on it and did an Extended Down. 

On the way home Bailey did continue to drool, but it wasn't as bad as on the way to the pier.


Pupdate 2/16/2024

This time we visited 3rd Street Promenade, and I discovered another issue to add to Bailey's list.  Running water, I'm not sure if it's bodies of water in general, but I would say running or fountains of water for sure.

I was already planning on the video in this area before I realized it was an issue for Bailey.  I left the camera recording because It was more important for me to focus on working with Bailey.  The good news is that by doing so, you can see a good example of how we can get her through some of these issues.  

Bailey already knows her commands, but as you watch the video you can see where I'm trying to get her to do basic Heeling, Sitting, and Placing.  She acts like I'm talking 'Greek' and that she's never heard these words before.  I try and take a few passes of just walking past the water with Bailey, and finally we just sit down.  Even then I'm trying to coax her to go closer to the water.  She's not ready to go closer, but when her eyes and body language soften, we try Place again.  She's willing to work around the water and each time I get her closer to the fountain part of the water.  She finally gives me a Place next to the area where the fountain water is hitting the water.  We can't stop working now, but her reward is getting some space from that area.  

Remember the cow bells I mentioned early on?  These are the bells that are hanging on the front door.  The idea is for the dogs to ring the bells if they need to go out and go potty.  Bailey can be playing with Diego, or just relaxing but she goes to the door and rings the bells.  The first time she did it, she didn't believe me that I would come running.  It was a soft ring and it almost didn't register with me that she wanted anything.  She immediately started sniffing the ground and that's when I realized that yes, she was asking to go out.  Now when she rings them, she makes sure I hear them.  


Pupdate 2/17/2024

Today was a relaxing day around town on a 2+ mile walk.  We worked on Bailey's fear of moving vehicles, loud sounds including music and a dinging railroad crossing bell - you can't plan for those.   Bailey knows all of her commands and today's walk had minimal leash pressure.  

Bailey's job is to speed up or slow down on her heeling based on my steps, stopping in a sit when I stop - which she is usually pretty good at.  Understanding when I want her to stay sitting for an Extended Sit.  At this time I'm actually taking a step behind her or to the side and then going in front of her.  The heeling was the hardest for her.  I tend to have a quick gait but slowed it down today - we need to enjoy the sun a little bit!  The gait I slowed down  to happened to be in between her preferred gaits and she had a tough time finding a happy medium.  Even with that, she did pretty good!

We had a few out of control dogs behind fences that Bailey worked through - it wasn't the big dogs that were the issue, it was the little terriers!  They have a false sense of security behind a fence and came charging out of nowhere.  Bailey froze but I worked with her and we moved on.

We also found interesting places to work on Place and Under.  You always see those neat pictures of the dogs sitting on the smallest things so I decided to try this little stool - first picture.  Bailey gave me a look that said she couldn't do it.  After several tries she made it and comfortably laid down for a break.  

Sometimes it's hard to find a place for Under, this bus stop bench presented itself and I gave it a shot.  We've practiced Under's enough that Bailey was comfortable to go Under on the first try and she's enjoying the chance of 'being invisible'.

Bailey has been doing well on door manners leaving the house, but she's so excited about going back in and seeing Diego that today we started working on Outside door manners.  It's the same thing, she's not allowed to bolt in or out, but wait to be released.

In the evening I discovered that Bailey likes to take all the toys and put them in the crate.  Diego has been told he's not allowed to go in her crate when she's in there so he's not stealing them back.  It's kind of funny to watch the interaction.  She acts very submissive with Diego and wrinkle's her nose quite often.  Diego doesn't trust the wrinkled nose and is expecting a snap to come from it.  

Bailey has tried to pull the XPen that is between the kitchen and main part of the house, but hasn't given it much of an attempt.  I accidentally ran into it yesterday and it made quite a racket.  It scared her so I've added it to the list and am working on that too.


Pupdate 2/18/24

Today we went to Old Town Ventura.  We started out early because of the incoming rain, I expected others to do the same.  Even the vendors did!  It took awhile for people to make their way there.  

We did some warm-up heeling looking for the perfect video spot.  All through the Boulevard there were wheelchair ramps, and we were able to use them as practice Places and build up the distance.  We just kept heeling, come across another one and I would send her.  At one point we were able to get a distance of 20 feet.  

We had one issue before the video, working on a Place, and a passer-by decided to chime in and help with verbal commands after I had already given them.  That confused Bailey and made her hesitate from following through.  I gave her an 'eh-eh' which helped her to refocus on me and back to work we went.

In another area there was a gentleman who was working an off leash French Bulldog, walking backwards.  He spotted Bailey first, in a place, who's watching him to figure out what he's doing.  He immediately calls his dog to the other side of him.  Both dogs continued working although they were looking at each other, but neither broke what they were doing.  Per the way the owner acted, I think he was surprised that Bailey continued working in her Place.  Good job Bailey!!

We did our video in front of the movie theatre, next to the busiest restaurant on the Boulevard.  And Bailey had quite the audience.  Bicycles were not a problem today, until one came at her.  The bicyclist waited until Bailey was clear.  I gave her a Break command and she ran to the edge of the short wall on the patio of the restaurant.  She did redirect to me when I called her.  That's part of the video.

An item I did find interesting.  Bailey was more than happy to come when I called Break to release her from a Place.  When I used Come, she actually hesitated and refused to come.  That's one of those defiant times.  On the flip side, she was such a good girl, constantly checking in and listening.  In my opinion she can win this one, Break is perfectly fine and that's the way it'll be from now on from me.


Pupdate 2/19/2024

Today's event is getting pictures between raindrops!  We practiced Under's in various places around town.  Bailey's Place is so solid that she looks at everything as a place to jump up and Place on.  By the end of training in various areas, Bailey had a good idea of Under and when presented, automatically went under and laid down.  

I also noticed Bailey reaching out to people as we passed them by, so we started working on Greeting Manners.  She's very good about not jumping up on people, but she's so excited to say hi that she's forgetting she has to stay sitting.  That shouldn't be too hard to iron out.  

Practicing Loading up into a vehicle / crate is a bit trickier because of her motion sickness.  She's great about going into her crate in the house, and close to go into it from a distance.  But right now she avoids the vehicles, so I'm trying to make more of a game out of it.  Once again, between the raindrops.

Bailey watches the other dogs go outside, and then come inside and get toweled off.  When it's her turn, she's so excited about coming back into the house and then doing circles in the towel.  It seems to me she's having fun.


Pupdate 2/20/2024

Another rainy day, but today we played at Lowe's.  Bailey had a lot of practice on the Under command.  Our first video was in an aisle that had multiple areas that we could use, but the aisle was so long I decided to just work on three areas and make a game out of it.  Bailey did really well, but it didn't make such a great video.  You would see her go into the boxes and just disappear for awhile, and the one area you could see her in, it was dark and hard to see.

So, on to the next area.  Not as much fun for Bailey but we did more heeling and had a chance for an Extended Sit and Extended Down.

Bailey had a few areas that she either chose to Break herself or lag behind on heels.  Those are the times that you would use the ecollar.  Remember, the ecollar is like a TENs unit that chiropractors use, and stimulates the muscle.  We use it as a poke, like when someone is talking to us and we zone out, they might poke us to bring us back into the conversation.  Bailey is usually watching and listening so she knows what to do next.  Sometimes the environment is so overwhelming that she doesn't feel that poke.

For example, when you're listening to the car radio and get on the freeway.  The tires speeding along the road, the cars driving by, they all make extra noise so it's hard to hear the radio.  The volume on the radio needs to be increased so you and or your passengers can hear it.  That's what we need to do with the ecollar, 'turn up the volume'.  

We had another opportunity to work on manners, and then a gentleman came shuffling by.  Bailey instantly went on alert and I realized that her fear of canes was tied to the sound and act of shuffling.  I will look for opportunities to train Bailey around that environment.

I noticed a bump behind Bailey's left ear.  It wasn't easy to photograph but I've added a picture.  I will be watching it closely for any changes.


Pupdate 2/21/2024

Bailey and I were out checking the neighborhood for any water damage in the area.  Ran into lots of machine noise as people were pumping out water from a lower level or working on repairs.  Found some beautiful pictures along the way, the silver lining to all the rain we've had.

Bailey is doing really well with loose leash heeling and extended sits and downs.  It appears an outside environment isn't so boring and she will hold her Extended Sits and Downs for a longer period.  While walking in a heel, I'm using a 15 foot lead which is dragging behind us.  Sometimes it starts tangling up in Bailey's feet and I'll hold onto it, but it's so loose that I am not directing her at all.

When Bailey is on a Break, she stays close by and responds immediately when called.  We have seen many cats and birds, but she hasn't started chasing anything.  And the dogs we've come across have not been an issue for her.  For all animals I give her an Off command with a nudge from the ecollar.  I usually call her back to me with a Come to Sit and have her hold her sit while the animal is around.  When we walk by, it's similar starting with the Off command paired with a nudge from the ecollar, and then heeling past the animal.

When Bailey and Diego are playing and it starts getting wild, I raise my voice so they can hear it and will give them an Off command.  Bailey immediately heads to her crate and lays down.  


Pupdate 2/22/2024

Today's adventure was back out at the Santa Monica Pier.  Bailey started out strong with a heel down the stairs and walking with the crowd of people towards the pier.  We had three little dogs walking in the opposite direction and Bailey ignored them perfectly as we made our way towards the pier.  

As we started walking down the pier, there were a couple of young adults practicing on their skateboards down the street part of the pier and onto the wood.  Bailey couldn't see them because of a barrier to protect the pedestrians, but she could hear them.  She started looking behind us, trying to locate the sound, and now she's also worried about the people following us.  As soon as I had a clear path we pulled out from all those people; the skateboarders had moved off to another area which was helpful.  

I placed Bailey in several areas, looking to give her some de-stress time, but she was too over the top at that point.  I gave her some time to just sit and chill, but she continued to pan the crowd and not settle down.  A young boy came over and asked if he could pet Bailey.  I said yes and even though Bailey enjoyed the visit, she wasn't settling down.  

After evaluating the area and Bailey's reactions, she and I moved over to the 3rd St Promenade.  I started in a Place around one of the water attractions and Bailey was not amused.  I sat with her for a time and then moved closer to where the water was pouring out of the fountain and into the little pool.  She came right to me when I invited her over.

As we walked the promenade, I invited her to Place and Under at different objects, some tougher than others.  That's one of the ways I evaluate her anxiety.  If she's anxious she's unwilling to try  anything, just shuts down.  During the video I had her try an Under at a rocking chair.  A little short, and Bailey was a bit tired so she didn't quite get it right, but the point is that she was willing to try.  For it to be correct, Bailey's whole body is supposed to be under the chair.  I think she would have rolled herself into a ball / donut if she wasn't so tired.

I had Bailey Place on the black sign earlier - the black sign in the video.  I had tested it to make sure it wasn't too hot, and again in the video.  Because Bailey had already done it once, she anticipated the command and went to it.  When I called Bailey back, she was confused as to why and then figured I wanted her to go Under.  There was no way she could get under that sign, but she gets bonus points for even considering it.


Pupdate 2/23/2024

Back outside trying to enjoy some sunshine.  Today's walk took us up in the houses along the foothills to practice loose leash heeling - I can't walk that fast so Bailey has to adjust to my speed.  There's a method to my madness.  Enjoyed some art work and found a stone for an Old Yeller type photo.

Bailey reacted to any fast moving cars, meaning she shied away from them.  Most cars were taking the windy roads slowly but we had a couple that zoomed by us.  It was only a slight movement, but enough to notice and share.

I'm doing more Place and Unders in the house, trying to mix them up so Bailey will listen more instead of assuming what I'm going to do.  Of course Diego wants to get in the game.  Also working on the minivan several times a day, she's willing to jump into the van without hesitation, but continues to try to avoid the crate.  


Pupdate 2/24/2024

Today Bailey and I were able to get on the tennis courts.  I used a light leash that she dragged.  As a puppy, Bailey is still having issues with her extended downs during various distractions.  I started out with a tennis ball.  Overall she did well, she only chased it once when she was working and was supposed to be in a down.

We practiced some Extended Downs and I learned that if I walked straight to a Place area and there's room to go under, she automatically goes Under.  But, if I walk in a way that the Place is on the path of the walk, she'll place nicely.  

Having a favorite person run by her when she is in an Extended Down was difficult for her so I will continue working on that.  

We started having issues with Extended Sits when I put distance between us.  Near the middle of the video I had to continue correcting her by lifting her out of a down and placing her back in a sit.  There may have been a loud noise behind me and she broke her sit and ran towards the camera.  I called Sit and she stopped and sat.  She then came when I called her.  

Near the end of the video I started staying closer to her which helped.  And then I started expanding that distance, step by step.


Pupdate 2/25/2024

Bailey and I took a nice long walk around some of the busier streets in town during church and breakfast time.  It was nice to hear all the oohs and ahs from people as we walked by.  We practiced Extended Sits while watching groups of people walking by.  Bailey decided to break her sit and lay down, I guess she figured we were staying for awhile.  We started working on puppy push ups.  That's where the dog is in a sit, then placed in a down.  Then back into a sit, and into a down.  Bailey was not into this game so I had to step into her space to get her to sit up.  The idea is that the dog has to get up on their own instead of me assisting them.  After a few tries Bailey got the idea of the game.  

While we've been practicing Sits, I noticed that Bailey was starting to get sloppy with her sits.  I don't know if she's trying to do them faster so they become a side sit instead of a full sit.  We are taking the time to fix that as well.  That might be the issue as to why she goes into a down so often when she's in an Extended Sit, I'm watching that closer now.

We continue to practice manners.  She's been able to hold her Extended Down for food manners over two minutes in the kitchen.  I will start moving it into a large area.  Door manners has been pretty good although that puppy side tends to continue to jump in because she's so excited about being outside.  She has been doing so well with it that it surprises me when she doesn't hold a Sit to go outside.  

Bailey places well inside of her crate in the house, but we're still working on the crate in the van.  It's not that she doesn't know what to do, I believe she's trying to avoid the car ride.  I'm giving her more time in the non-moving car, and short rides around town.  


Pupdate 2/26/2024

Bailey and I headed over to the Blvd along the beach in Ventura and had a nice long training walk before the rain hit.  There were a lot of bicycles that went by so we were able to practice Extended Sits during that time.

Other distractions included people walking, some with dogs, others with strollers, and an Amtrac train coming through about every 20 minutes.  Bailey was very interested in pigeons that were picking up bread, but when given the OFF command, she just sat and watched them.  

In the video you'll see a few bicycles flying past which Bailey had issues with.  I found the more I corrected her on the Extended Sits, the less likely she was to hold them.  I ALSO noticed that sloppy sit again.  In the video you'll see me assisting her back into a sit, and then calling her out of it with a Break and resetting her in an Extended Sit.  Not only did she have a better chance in holding the sit once she was reset, it helped improve her work ethic.  She would come out of that corrected sit relieved and willing to try again.

We had a gentleman stop by on his walk and was sharing some of the 'trade' secrets training exotic animals - mountain lions.  Unfortunately, what he shared I couldn't use but was food for thought.  I chose to keep it in the video because I noticed a couple of things.  It seemed like Bailey was listening to the conversation while the environment was happening around her, and she completely ignored it.  For example, I saw a dog walk by, other people pass, and a bicycle that Bailey just looked at.  I gave her a Break, she did her Come to Sit, and at that point people walked around us, a person walked a bicycle behind us and made eye contact with her, while two others also walked by and Bailey didn't flinch, move, or show any anxiety.  After the conversation, it was almost a full reset for her.  She had a perfect Come to Sit and patiently sat in an Extended Sit while watching the moving bicycles and people walking past her and didn't feel like she needed to move.  

Because the man didn't try to interact with Bailey, it made her feel more secure and confident.  I've seen that with other dogs, they try to be invisible because they're afraid of people.  If someone notices them they back up and try to hide behind me.  But if the person talks to me and ignores the dog, the dog is able to work with less fear.


Pupdate 2/27/2024

Today we worked at Los Angeles State Historic Park in Los Angeles.  The drive down was a little better with Bailey's motion sickness in that it took about 45 minutes before she got sick.  I tried a couple of essential oils to help with anxiety.

Our main focus today was the Send to Place and Under.  Bailey gets herself in a routine - we do a whole bunch of Places, so she anticipates doing another place.  We do a few Unders, so she anticipates doing under.  In the past I've been able to get a 15 foot send out, but today it was difficult to get five feet, I think because I kept mixing Place and Under and she wasn't sure which she should do.  

Two new things we haven't had in our environment in the past was a fairly large drone, and buses.  Bailey found the drone interesting and would sit there and watch it.  I was able to get a four minute extended sit due to that drone!  Later, we had a bus go by which made a loud sound and Bailey jumped and looked around startled.  

Bailey was doing an Extended Place / Down when a French Bulldog stopped and stared at Bailey.  I could only guess the bulldog wanted to know why 'that dog' was allowed to be on a bench and she couldn't.  Bailey looked from the bulldog to me, trying to figure out what was going on.  I gave her one OFF and she ignored the dog.  Unfortunately, it did not help the dog move on.  It was kind of funny watching the owner try and get the bulldog to move on.

There were many dogs around today and Bailey ignored them as they passed by.  I had a chance to work Bailey around a controlled group of dogs - they were all with trainers and under control.  Bailey did well walking around them, circling them, and even passing a dog as it walked towards her.  I saw her twitch and considered doing a drive-by sniff, I called OFF immediately.  Bailey continued to heel and ignored the dog.


Pupdate 2/28/2024

Today Bailey and I decided to see what was happening at the Collection in Oxnard.  For all the cars that were there, I have no idea where the people were hiding.  We started in the theatre area and found a water feature.  There were more fountains than at the other places we have visited and Bailey wanted nothing to do with it.  We sat next to it for a few minutes and then moved on.

The collection has a few ponds full of turtles, Bailey was not impressed.  Because of the water?  We moved on to the park that was next to the turtle area and playground and Bailey successfully held a three minute Extended Sit.  There was a toddler that wanted to visit Bailey and she was a little worried about that.  I started moving in closer to Bailey to support her, and the mom distracted her son off into a different direction.  At the Break, Bailey also did a clean Come to Sit.  What a good girl!!

There were benches around the park so we practiced Under.  When you look at this park, the center is down about two and half feet from the sides.  In previous dog trainings I fake the dog out by kneeling and giving them the impression that I'm much further than I am.  I decided to try this with Bailey and went down this little hill before the end of her Under.  She broke her Extended Down under the bench by two seconds because she was worried that I was getting too far away.  I placed her back under the bench and didn't go down the hill until I actually gave her the Break command.

The beginning of the video was in a play area where a family was enjoying lunch.  They had just finished and moved into the Chess and Connect game area as I was about to give up and move on.  I checked in with the father before filming and the kids were great distractions.  Bailey had some issues with her Extended Sits here, I think because of the kids.  When I changed it to Extended Downs, she was more willing to work with me.  It never fails, when we're filming Bailey is just in front of my knee which makes it difficult to make left turns.  Communication will be the key here, you'll need to talk to her so she's focus on you as you're turning.

Other things we practiced today, at home we worked on Door Manners which is where she is placed in a sit or down - I find down is better - open the door, and she has to stay there until released.  I used Diego and his tennis ball as a distractor.  Bailey did a great job and waited until she was released.

We also practiced Food Manners.  She is placed in a sit or down, and then her food is placed a few feet from her.  She has to wait until released before she can go and eat it.  We've been building up to that, starting at 15 second intervals.  Today I released her in two and a half minutes.

Commands we have talked about - we will cover all of these on Sunday:


Come to Sit

Sit / Extended Sit

Down / Extended Down

Place / Extended Place


Come to Heel 

Greeting Manners

Door Manners

Food Manners

Load Up - this one has been an issue because she gets car sick.  She loves going places but hates the car.


Pupdate 2/29/2024

Today was Bailey‘s third time at Santa Monica pier, and by far this is the best that she has done there. 

We started out in an Extended Place. That’s the picture on the blue bench. It took a couple of tries before she was willing to do it, but then, when we went down a few yards down the way, she immediately jumped up on another blue bench, in front of one of the vendors.  This is significant because it’s in front of a lot of talking machines, and Bailey picked this one. Last week she couldn’t get away from the machines fast enough.

Bailey focused on me as she heeled by dogs, music vendors, and crowds of people. At the end of the pier, I placed her on a bench type step by the observation deck, and she relaxed as she watched the people go by. I thought that her picture on the Santa Monica pier sign was a cool touristy thing to do. 

After we completed our walk on the pier, we made a visit to the 3rd St. Promenade.  She did great on her Heeling, was a little nervous around a man who was yelling but when I placed her in an Extended Sit, she held it for over two minutes.

I chose to give Bailey a break from the water attractions and asked for a Place that was 30 inches high.  She took it easily and did her Extended Down / Place for over two minutes.  

I'm very proud of Bailey, this is exactly what the three weeks of training was about, giving her more confidence and the ability to work through the overwhelming chaos.


Pupdate 3/01/2024

The attached video shows three manners, Door, Food, and Greeting.  This gives you a good idea as to what they should look like so you can practice them with Bailey.

The first one in the video is Door Manners.  Bailey should always wait to be released to go through a door, gate, or any type of barrier.  The most important reason comes to mind because you  literally live in coyote country.  She needs to wait for you to make sure it's safe for her to go outside - whether it be another animal, vehicle, etc.  Another reason is if you have visitors, she should sit / down calmly while you talk to them at the door or invite them in.  

Food Manners is the second one.  I have had her wait up to three minutes.  She has learned she'll get her food, she just has to wait.  IF she breaks from her sit or down, I usually give her an Eh Eh, and she'll sit or lay back down and wait.  

I thought you would enjoy her greeting manners, she wasn't pushy or jumping up.  She was being very sweet and polite, this is how she should always greet people.  I don't expect her to be able to contain herself on Sunday, but after that I would strongly suggest enforcing this with her.  No greeting until she sits nicely.  


Pupdate 3/2/2024

Today Bailey was able to go to Diego’s Treibball class. We practiced quietly hanging out while other dogs had their class, and then place on ‘strange’ objects.

The hardest one was a yellow container, and Bailey was mesmerized by the wall-to-wall mirror. I used the wheelchair so that Bailey could be desensitized. We recently had a meet up with the group where a dog was being trained as a service dog. Bailey saw the chair, but wasn’t close enough to really be desensitize.

It was another in between raindrops day, and we worked on Load Up Manners. You would be very proud of your little girl!

bottom of page