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  • Writer's pictureJose Ayala

Bodi | Australian Shepherd | Rancho Palos Verdes, CA | In-Training

Meet Bodi! He is a sixteen month old Australian Shepherd who has joined us for our Two Week Board and Train Program! He is here for basic obedience, not coming when called, leash pulling, and jumping to greet. He has a tendency of running when he picks up an item when he is not supposed to, and will not drop it. He listens when he wants to and can be very stubborn. Over the next fourteen days, this friendly boy will  work on his behavior and be set up for success, with the hopes of becoming a well mannered pup. Check in to see his progress!


Bodi and I spent the afternoon getting to know each other. We took a walk throughout the park to establish a bond. He was pulling heavily on his leash, so I removed the leash from his harness and placed it on his collar. I introduced him to Heel which consists of having Bodi walking next to me on my left side. He would still pull but I had more control in steering him in the right direction. Whenever he would pull away, I would turn around and walk in the opposite direction and have Bodi catch up to me. He is still having a little trouble understanding the concept, but Heel will now be implied on every walk we go on from here on out.


Bodi and I continued to work on his Heel today and he has made a big improvement. He is understanding what I am asking and he is hardly pulling on his leash anymore. We went for an evening walk last night, and an early walk this morning and the progress is coming along. We also met up with other trainers and their dogs who assisted us by serving as a distraction as Bodi and I passed by. He did really great around other dogs and did not react or lunge at any of them.


Bodi was introduced to Place today. This technique consists of having Bodi getting onto an elevated object and remaining there in a Sit or a Down. It builds confidence in a dog and can be of great use whenever guests are over or if there is a knock on your door. To teach Bodi, I walked him towards the object and guided him with leash tension to have him hop on. Initially, Bodi would only put his two front paws on the object, so I gave his back legs a boost to have him fully get on. After a few repetitions, Bodi began to catch on to what I was asking, and was able to follow through.


Bodi was introduced to his recall today which is also known as Come to Sit. It consists of having Bodi come towards my right side, going around behind me, and sitting on my left. To teach Bodi, I used leash tension to have him come towards me. He would Sit in front of me or try to go through my legs when I asked him to Come, so I guided him with the leash to have him go towards my right. To have Bodi go around behind me, I used his food to lure him all the way around, and rewarding him when he sat on my left. He was a bit stubborn during our first few sessions and did not want to do it, but with consistency and patience, I was able to work Bodi through it.


Bodi and I worked on Down today. Down can be a difficult technique to teach considering it being a submissive position to a dog. To teach Bodi, I asked him to Sit, and then used leash tension and his food to lure him towards the ground. He sat up during our first attempts so I placed my hand over his back and kept him from getting up by applying slight pressure whenever he made an intent. It took time and patience, with breaks in between to avoid frustration, but Bodi was able to accomplish his Down. We also worked on Place a little more and Bodi was being stubborn and not wanting to do it. He became apprehensive, but once we worked on it repeatedly, I was able to work Bodi through it and have him follow through.


Bodi and I drove out to the Santa Monica Pier to work on what he knows in a public setting. He does well with low level distractions, so today I decided to increase the distractions and have Bodi around more people and dogs. He did really good, and even though his Down is still a work in progress, Bodi still followed through. We will continue working in more public areas to have him fully adjusted to high distracting environments. Bodi has learned all of his commands, and will now work on maintaining them by increasing distance and duration.


Bodi has been working on his Extended Sit and was having trouble maintaining it whenever I would start increasing distance. To help him with that, I moved back one foot at a time with five second increments. One foot back is five seconds, two feet back is ten seconds, three feet back is fifteen and so on. Bodi is still working on it and he is progressing. He is almost up to one minute, and today I was able to go around Bodi full circle without him coming out of his Sit.


Bodi and I went out for a walk around my neighborhood and began working on Heel with his leash dragging. We had a few warm up sessions in my backyard which went very well before taking him out. Bodi was great throughout our session and ignored dogs in the distance barking from their front yard. In the coming days, Bodi and I will continue with his leash dragging around more distractions in public areas.


Bodi and I worked on Place in a high distracting environment with his leash dragging. He does very well in public areas and adjusts to his surroundings pretty quick. He did have trouble placing due to the texture and size of the object. I had to guide him with leash tension to work him through it and build his confidence a little more. After a few attempts, we worked on it with his leash dragging, and Bodi began to follow through.


Bodi and I drove out to a local shopping center today and worked on his Extended Down along with his recall. He was being a little stubborn and not wanting to do it, but Bodi worked through it. He can hold his position for almost two minutes with a good amount of distance from me as well. His recall still needs a little cleaning up, as he sometimes sits a little behind me on my left, but the more we work on it, the more he is understanding what I am asking.


Bodi and I drove out to a local park and worked on some final leash dragging exercises in order to have him fully prepared to work off leash. He did really well and his Come to Sit continues to progress. Bodi continues to thrive and is just about ready to begin filming for his Final. His leash will be coming off in the next few days, and he will continue to work without it for the remainder of his Program.


Bodi and I have been working on Door Manners since the day I brought him home. Anytime I opened a door, Bodi would Sit and wait until he wanted to, and would then try to go through the door before me. To help him into not doing so, I would ask him to Down when we approached a door. Once in a Down position, I proceeded to open the door, and made sure Bodi remained in his position. When I opened the door, every time he sat up meant the door would close, and the process would repeat itself. Once Bodi understood what I was asking, I began to increase time and distance to keep him in a Down longer, which led to Bodi achieving his two minute goal.


Bodi and I have been working on his Greeting Manners in which he has shown a big improvement in. He has learned that he is to remain in a Sit whenever he is approached by someone that wants to say hello. It was difficult for him to do so in the beginning of his training, since he would come out of his Sit whenever I stepped away. With repetition and consistency, Bodi has managed to successfully be greeted without coming out of his Sit.


Bodi has completed his Two Week Board and Train Program and is ready to come home. I want to thank you for trusting me with Bodi these last two weeks while he was under my care, and also for giving me the opportunity in being his trainer. We became great friends and I will miss his companionship. His Final video will be uploaded soon, but here is a sneak peek at Bodi working on his Food Manners. Enjoy. Thank you Bodi!


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