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  • Writer's pictureAdrienne Lascari

Franklin | Labradoodle | Los Angeles, CA | In-Training

Meet Franklin, a one year old Labradoodle from Los Angeles, CA. He has joined OffLeashSoCal for our Three Week Board and Train Program. Franklin comes to us with habits of being reactive to people and dogs out in public. He also barks and whines when people are at the door and will jump to greet once they come in. Franklin is a smart boy, but struggles to follow through or hold commands. He does not come when recalled and will pull on the leash during walks. If Franklin is not allowed to say hi, he will whine until he gets attention. Over the next three weeks, Franklin and I will be working on his basic obedience and manners. Stay tuned to see his transformation!

 

Pupdate 2/11/2024

Franklin had no problem settling into my home today. He did well meeting all my pups and the other dogs here for training as well. The dogs weren’t in the mood to run around and play, so Franklin just explored my yard instead. He was excited to meet everybody at my house and I made sure to prevent him from jumping on anybody. I asked Franklin to do some commands to see what he knows, which he has a good understanding of a few already. He has a good foundation, so we will work on him holding the commands until we say break. We can’t wait to get started on Franklin’s journey to being off leash! 

 

Pupdate 2/12/2024

Today Franklin and I headed to Wilderness Park to meet up with the other OffLeash trainers. We were able to work around people and dog distractions. Franklin was excited to say hello to anyone who gave him attention, but he did great ignoring anyone who passed by when we were training. We started off Franklin's training by working on heel. In the video I explain how we structure heel and how Franklin and I worked on heel as well. I also attached a video on the e-collar details. Since Franklin has a good understanding of commands already, we started to implement the e-collar right away so he can learn what corrections are. The e-collar will be for anytime he makes a mistake or is doing something he should not be doing, such as jumping to greet.

Franklin is a fast learner, but he can be stubborn when it comes to following through. With treats, Franklin was doing a perfect heel, but once the treats were taken away he would lose interest. We continued to practice more without treats and more of using the e-collar. Franklin is starting to relate the collar stimulation to fixing his mistakes. We still need more practice on the structure of Franklin's heel, but overall he did great not pulling on the leash and ignoring passing distractions!

When we got home, the other pups finally warmed up to Franklin and they spent the rest of the day playing together.

 

Pupdate 2/13/2024

Today Franklin and I trained at Hacienda Park. There were low distractions, but it was great for working on leash dragging with Franklin. Starting off, Franklin was not focused during his heel and would lead in front. We focused a lot on practicing heel around the park. After implementing corrections when needed and repetition of sharp left and right turns, Franklin began to focus more. I was able to drop the leash and let it drag during our walk. We also practiced on Franklin holding his commands as I moved around. He is doing great with an extended sit, down, and place but can get distracted if someone walks by. If Franklin would break command, I would put him back in the same spot he was, give a correction, and have him go back into the command he was in before. I decided to teach Franklin the command ‘look’ where he makes eye contact with me. This is great for when he is focused on something else and I want to have him check in with me to see if he is paying attention. When teaching him this, I would hold a treat up to my face and say look, and when he would make eye contact, I would give him the treat. Another thing we worked on was Franklin’s recall. When he is in a command and is focused, he does great when I say come, but when he is roaming free and distracted, he doesn’t come right away. To work on this, I would ask Franklin to come, and when he followed through, I would break him by throwing a treat to get him distracted. I would repeat the process by asking him to come, then throw the treat again and say break. Practicing with treats in the beginning teaches Franklin that he will get a reward if he comes to me when recalled. After some repetition, I then substituted the treats by saying break and giving him attention so he doesn’t only follow through with commands when treats are involved. Next we will work with Franklin around busier environments to work on his excitement out around lots of distractions.

 

Pupdate 2/14/2024

Today, Franklin and I trained at Lowe’s. We worked on more of his skills while leash dragging. When first going into a new environment, Franklin becomes very excited. He wants to explore new surroundings which causes him to lead when walking. In the beginning of our training, Franklin and I walked around the entire store a few times to help him become familiar and bring his excitement down. I still implemented corrections when needed, such as when he was leading or sniffing the ground, and did lots of turns to keep him engaged. Franklin’s heel started to improve and he became more focused as we practiced. We continued to work on his extended sit, down, and place and even worked on a new command, send away to place. When first working on send away to place, I start  with Franklin placing on an object like normal, then backing up a step, then repeating the process. Since Franklin is great at doing place, he caught on to send away to place very quickly. At times he got confused when I would ask him to place and we were a bit of distance from the object , so we just took a few steps forward and continued to practice. 

Franklin is doing great leash dragging and following through with all his commands with distractions around, but we need some more practice with somebody coming up close to greet Franklin. The workers at Lowe’s loved seeing Franklin behave so well, so they came up and complimented him. Franklin’s excitement got the best of him and caused him to break command. He rushed up to them and wanted attention, but I gave a correction and had him go back into a sit. We will continue to work on Franklin containing his excitement when somebody comes up to greet.

 

Pupdate 2/15/2024

Today Franklin and I trained at Whittwood Town Center. Today we focused more on him holding his commands. He is getting better at containing his excitement, but still needs to practice on it more. When I asked Franklin to go into a down, he was stubborn to follow through until a correction was given. He then would break command when he saw his friends training at a distance. I made sure to hold him accountable to following through until I said break. As for heel, again Franklin wanted to explore the new environment, causing him to be distracted during the walk. We took a few laps around the shops while adding in sharp turns and corrections to keep Franklin engaged. After the warming up, Franklin began to focus during the heel. We also practiced on Franklin staying calm and in a sit when someone comes up to greet him. I had the other trainer come up to pet him, but when Franklin would break command, I would have her back away and ignore him. This helps teach Franklin that he will only get attention when he is being calm and in a sit. If we reward the overly excited behavior, he will think it is okay to act that way every time. This also goes when we give him attention. There are times when Franklin jumps up on me to get attention. In this situation I tell him off, implement a correction with the e-collar, then wait till he is calm to pet him. 

 

Pupdate 2/16/2024

Franklin and I headed to the Citadel Outlets to train. Before walking into the outlets, I made sure that Franklin was calm and was focused in heeling. If he started to lead I would turn back around and continue to do circles in the same area. Since Franklin was leading, I did not want to reward him by walking the direction he wants to go in. Instead I turn around and only move forward when he follows through with the heel. Franklin started to focus so we were able to walk around the stores. There were lots of people and dog distractions for Franklin to work around today. He did great ignoring people and calm dogs that walked by, but there was one time where Franklin became reactive. There was a small dog who was lunging and barking at Franklin which caused him to start growing and barking back. He tried to pull on the leash to go in the dog’s direction, but I turned up the stimulation level on the remote and gave a correction while telling Franklin off. In these situation, we turn the stimulation up to a high number rather than gradually turning it up because we want to stop Franklin from doing something he shouldn’t be. This included other situations such as jumping, running off, or eating or something he shouldn’t be eating. I want to point out that Franklin does fine walking past other dogs that are calm and ignore him as well, but when it comes to other dogs reacting to him, he will feed off their energy.

Franklin and I worked on a new command today, under. When first teaching Franklin, I did not use the e-collar since he does not know the command. I used treats to lure him under the bench while continually saying under. Franklin did catch on pretty quick and started to do the command without needing to use treats. Under is great to use when going out to eat with Franklin. You can have him go under that table or chair and get him out of the walkway. Just like place, it can be a spot for dogs to relax. Sometimes dogs can confuse place with under, so hand gestures can help. Gesture your hand under the object you want your pup to go under, and for place, tap or point to the top of the object. We also worked more on send away to place which in the video you can see Franklin struggled a little with. I then moved to a different place object and practiced more which Franklin did a lot better with. The reason he could have been struggling was because the bench was uncomfortable for him to stand on.

 

Pupdate 2/17/2024

Today, Franklin and I trained at La Mirada Regional Park. He’s doing a lot better with his heel. As we were walking around the park, these girls came up to us and were talking with me for a while. I had Franklin sit, but he started to whine after a few minutes. He wasn’t as interested in the girls talking to me, but more on just not being able to sit still. We walked around the park some more, and I made sure to work with Franklin around lots of distractions. We stopped near the tennis courts where Franklin really wanted to get the ball people were playing with. He did break his sit a few times when he saw the ball head our way, but I held him accountable by implementing a correction, and he went back into a sit. After some practice, he was able to hold his commands without breaking. We continue to walk around the park and stopped near the pond where there were lots of ducks and birds. Franklin was interested at first, but as I asked him to do commands, he started to ignore the ducks. Towards the end of our training, Franklin started to show lots of improvement in his heel, holding commands, and ignoring distractions! I even worked on the command under with Franklin, which he is doing very well with! 

 

Pupdate 2/18/2024

Today, Franklin and I trained at the Shoppes in Chino Hills. Franklin got to be off leash today and did great with all his commands. He did get distracted by a dog who was barking at him. I told him off and implemented a correction to bring his focus back to me. Franklin still needs a little more practice working around other dog distractions. He was also being stubborn when it came to having him go into a down. It took a few times of asking and implementing corrections until he followed through with the command. Once he went into a down, he did great holding it until I said break. Overall, Franklin is doing a great job and is able to practice off leash! 

 

Pupdate 2/19/2024

Today Franklin and I headed to Lowe’s to meet up with the other pups in training and to stay out of the rain. Before working with Franklin off leash, I held on to the leash just because his excitement was causing him to lose focus. Franklin becomes overly excited and consumed in the environment at first. It took him about 10-15 minutes to adjust and be able to focus on commands. Although, today there were low distractions. So, in a high distraction area his adjustment time may be longer. Before I start asking Franklin to do any commands when out in public, it helps to do a long heel around the area to get him familiar with his surroundings. Once I notice him starting to focus, we then can stop and start working on other commands. As for today, Franklin did great when we worked on his commands. We practiced everything off leash while working around the other pups. He followed through with every command I asked, but he did break his sit a few times when having to hold it for a long time. Like always, I held him accountable to following through by placing him back in the same spot he was in a sit and implementing a correction. He also tried to go up to the puppy when we heeled by but I told him off. I also continued to walk and gave corrections until he caught up to me. You don’t want to stop for whatever it is your dog is distracted by since that is what they want you to do, so continuing to walk away while correcting them teaches them they can’t stop until we say break. I can also see that Franklin becomes anxious and bored when staying in one spot for a long time. He starts to whine, has trouble sitting still, and stress yawns. If we ignore Franklin in this situation, his anxiousness will start to build till he can no longer keep it in and end up going for whatever it is he wants. So, we can give Franklin commands to do to keep his mind busy and off other distractions. When sitting too long, he also will become consumed by his surroundings once again. He starts to look around and even jolt if there are loud noises. Again, having him work rather than sitting still can keep his mind off other things. Exposing him to new environments each day will soon help Franklin’s adjustment time become shorter. Overall, he is still showing great improvements and is listening well while off leash! 

 

2/20/2024

Today Franklin and I trained at the Cerritos Mall. The mall doesn’t allow dogs off leash, so we practiced with the leash on. I made sure to keep a loose grip and lots of slack. His adjustment time was about 10 minutes today. Instead of stopping right away I heeled him around the area until his energy lowered. His heel had gotten a lot better, even when first walking into a new environment. Before he would pull to explore the area, now he checks his surroundings while still being focused in a heel. Franklin was able to walk past dog distractions and hold commands without breaking. The only incident Franklin had was trying to jump when someone was greeting him. I gave him a correction and had him go back into a sit. I also asked the people to stop petting him if he gets up from his sit. I had the other trainers practice greeting manners with Franklin and I. He started to do a lot better with practice. He still gets very excited when someone is giving him attention, but he did stay in command. 

 

Pupdate 2/21/2024

Today Franklin and I trained at Century City Park. There were lots of dog distractions and even dog walkers! Today was great for practicing on Franklin’s focus and reactivity. He was interested in all the dogs, but he did stay in a heel. He was also able to hold commands when the dogs passed by. When I noticed he would become too focused on a dog, I would say off and implement a correction. We want to prevent him from becoming fixated which is harder to snap him back into focus from. Franklin was able to adjust pretty quickly to this new environment. There was only one time Franklin broke a heel which he rushed to the grass to go potty, but that was my fault for not breaking him before we started to train.

 

2/22/2024

Franklin and I trained at the Citadel Outlets. He started off very well and adjusted right away. His excitement did overcome him when we went into stores. He wanted to sniff anything around him and was interested in all the shoppers. I heeled him around the area and gave corrections when he lost focus. He started to do a lot better but we definitely will practice more in this type of environment. Walking outside of the stores was not a problem for Franklin. He even did well staying focused when dogs passed by. 

 

2/23/2024

Today, Franklin and I trained at home. We worked on his send away to load up, food manners, and door manners. Franklin loves going for car rides, so having him send away to a load up was no problem. We started off at a close distance when having him place into the car. We were able to create a lot of distance after some practice, and he jumped into the car no problem. Next, we worked on his door manners which he did struggle with. When he saw his friends running and playing outside, he wanted to join them. I made sure to hold him accountable for staying in a down as the dogs pass by. Again with some practice, Franklin was able to wait patiently until I heeled him out the door. I didn’t want to break him because this leads to bolting out the door. So for instances such as letting him come out of the crate, doorways, or the car, you can ask him to come or heel right away. Door manners is great for preventing Franklin from running out the door. It also keeps him out of the way when guests come over. You can put him in any command away from the door and break him when you are ready for Franklin to greet your guest. For Franklin’s food manners he did well right away, but was very eager to eat his food. He did well waiting patiently until I told him break.

 

Pupdate 2/24/2024

Today, Franklin and I worked at home once again. Franklin tends to push his boundaries at the house more than he does out in public, so I wanted to practice his commands while his friends were playing around him. At first, he was distracted and wanted to go play, but I implemented corrections whenever he broke command. After lots of repetition, Franklin became more focused and held commands even when his friends came up to distract him. We worked a little bit more on his food manners. Lately Franklin has been trying to steal the other pups food. To work on this I had set food around and heeled him by it. Again, after some practice and implementing corrections, he did great refusing the food that I did not want him to eat.

 

Pupdate 2/25/2024

Today, Franklin and I worked at Hacienda Park. We practice on his distance come and come to heel. Franklin did great on his recall, but he was running a little too fast that he bumped into me. I let Franklin have some free time off leash at the park and when he got too far, I recalled him and he did great coming back to me. I’m proud to see Franklin following through with commands, even when he is on a break and is distracted. He struggled a little bit with under and place. He was mixing up both commands, which is understandable, but with some practice he started to get them down. 

 

Pupdate 2/26/2024

Today, Franklin and I trained at the Brea mall. He was a little nervous at first when entering the mall because of all the noises going on around him. He was a little jumpy when carts passed by, but I walked him around and he quickly warmed up to the environment. We were able to work off leash, which Franklin did great following through with all commands. There was one time Franklin broke command, which was when two ladies came up to compliment him and he walked up to say hello. He didn’t jump, which was great, but we still want to prevent him from breaking command whenever anyone tries to talk to him. Other than that one incident, Franklin is doing great and is showing improvement on not being so anxious out in public. 

 

2/27/2024

Today Franklin and I trained at Los Angeles Historic Park. Franklin was able to work right away without any anxiousness. He did great working around all the dog distractions! He held his commands and even sat politely as the other trainer greeted him. Although he sat while the trainer pet him, we still need some practice when strangers “baby talk” to him. Each incident he has had where he broke command was when people come up to say hello but are talking to him in that excited tone. The best way to prevent him from losing focus is by being proactive right when we notice someone is excited to see Franklin. In that moment we can tell him off and sit or down to keep him focused in the command he is already in. It is easier to keep his focus before he is distracted rather then when he already is more interested in someone giving him attention. I also like to mention to people to not give Franklin attention if he becomes too excited since it is like rewarding him for that behavior. When he is in a sit or down, then I let them know they can now say hello. He really wanted to play with the other dogs but he controlled his excitement and stayed in command. I let Franklin have some fun around at the park. He explored freely around the grass and when I recalled him he came back to me right away. Franklin is doing great with his training and is showing improvement every day! 

 

2/28/2024

Franklin and I headed back to the Citadel Outlets for training. He did great working through all his commands like always. He did have one incident today where he was reactive towards a dog. When we walked around, Franklin had no problem walking past other dogs, but once he was in a sit, a dog passed by that was pulling on it’s leash to get to him. It caused Franklin to bark and growl. It was difficult to bring his focus back after he was already fixated on the dog. I then started to heel Franklin which helped him bring his energy back down. In this instance, it was my fault for not being proactive. For these situations, the best way to keep Franklin in focus is to catch him before he even becomes fixated and can no longer hold in his energy. Keeping him in motion while saying heel and off is great because we are constantly giving him a direction rather than letting him make his own choices. If we put him in a sit or down, his energy will build up until he no longer can keep it in. We can see signs that Franklin is becoming anxious such as whining, having trouble sitting still, and even his body language/position. We know Franklin can control himself around other dogs like he did yesterday at the park, but he struggles around dogs reacting towards him, which is understandable. It’s our job to stay on top of him when those situations come around. 

 

2/29/2024

Today, Franklin and I trained at the Brea mall. Before heading out, Franklin really needed a bath, so we got him all cleaned and dressed up! We focused on his greeting manners today. We headed into the makeup store where all the employees love to baby talk to dogs. We walked around the store before I had him sit and let people pet him. Franklin did great sitting politely while getting attention and he even stayed in a heel while lots of people were complimenting him! Before heading out in public, Franklin would take time to adjust to the environment. Now Franklin is having no problem adjusting and can start working on commands right away.

 

Pupdate 3/1/2024

Today Franklin and I worked at Azusa Park. We trained near the dog park to work on Franklin’s reactivity to other reactive dogs. I made sure to keep him in a heel while we walked past dogs. I can see he was interested in the dogs since his ears were going up and he would constantly scan the surrounding. When I noticed he lost focus in the heel, I would do sharp turns and implement corrections which brought his attention back to me. I also would constantly say heel and off. Even though he became a little distracted at times, he kept his energy low and never barked or growled! There were other pups walking by that pulled on their leash and whined to get to Franklin, but he kept his composure and heeled right past them. There was one time when Franklin got scared and growled which was when a little girl on her bike came riding fast towards us. He was nervous just in that moment which is understandable, but he did great snapping out of it and focusing back on commands. 

 

3/2/2024

Franklin has been working hard these past three weeks, so today he took the day off to have some fun in the rain! Looks like his bath didn’t last that long. Franklin spent the day playing with his friends and running around. We also headed to the park once the rain cleared. Franklin even learned a new trick, center and through! He didn’t mind learning something new since he got some treats out of it. He can’t wait to come home and show you everything he has learned! 


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