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  • Writer's pictureJose Ayala

Phoenix | Rottweiler | Torrance, CA | In-Training

Meet Phoenix! She is a six month old Rottweiler who has joined us for our Two Week Board and Train Program. Phoenix is here for basic obedience, leash pulling, jumping to greet, running through doors, and wanting to do things her way. Phoenix is easily distracted by other dogs and people, and will only listen when she wants to. Over the next fourteen days, this sweet little lady will be given the structure needed and be set up for success, with hopes of becoming a well behaved pup. Check in to see her progress!


Phoenix and I spent the day getting to know each other. We took a walk throughout the park and I introduced her to Heel. Heel is having Phoenix walk with me on my left side. To teach her how to walk properly, every time Phoenix would pull, I turned and walked in the opposite direction, and gave her leash tension to guide her back towards me. It is a work in progress, but she is understanding the concept and is pulling less. We will continue practicing as it will now be implied on every walk we take from here on out.


Phoenix and I went out to a local park and met with other trainers and their dogs. We began with a walk throughout the park and continued to work on her Heel. She has made an improvement and is not pulling as much as she was before. There are still some minor pulls that she tries to get away with, but I am going to clean that up as we move along. Phoenix did very well with the other dogs in the area and showed no signs of lunging or reacting towards them. She did test me and was a little stubborn with her Sit, but with leash tension, I was able to have Phoenix follow through.


Phoenix was introduced to Place today. It is a technique that consists of having Phoenix getting onto an elevated object and remaining there in a Sit or a Down. It can be of great use when guests are over and when someone is knocking at the door or ringing your doorbell. Phoenix had a little trouble learning to Place as she needed my assistance to help with her back legs. She would place her front legs on the object, but her back legs remained on the ground. I guided her by giving her back legs a boost to have her fully on the object. It took a few reps, but by staying consistent and patient, I was able to have Phoenix begin to Place on her own.


Phoenix and I drove out to a local beach and worked on some crosswalk exercises. On the day of pickup, you mentioned that she was having trouble crossing the street, and would start jumping and pulling as you were crossing. Today, Phoenix improved her crosswalk manners and crossed the street very well. She is learning that whenever we are on a walk and I come to a stop, she is to stop and Sit before continuing our walk.


Phoenix 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 Phoenix, I asked her to Sit, and then used leash tension and her kibble to lure her towards the ground. She sat up during our first attempts so I placed my hand over her back and kept her from getting up by applying slight pressure whenever she made an intent. It took time and patience, but Phoenix was able to accomplish her Down.


Phoenix and I have been working on her recall which is known as Come to Sit. This technique consists of having Phoenix coming towards my right side, going around behind me, and sitting on my left. She is doing well but still needs a little guidance when I increase distance. At times, Phoenix would also stop behind me, but by using her kibble, I was able to bring her fully around to have her Sit on my left. I am fading out her food and I am now working on it by using leash tension. The more we practice, the better Phoenix is able to follow through.


Phoenix and I took a drive to a local park and worked on her Extended Sit around people and dog distractions. There were many dogs in the area, and Phoenix did very well passing by them, and going around them throughout our walk. She is doing a very good job with her Extended Sit and can remain in her position for up to one minute. I will continue to work on it by increasing more distance and time to have her reach her two minute goal. Phoenix has learned all of her commands, and with week one coming to a close, she will begin training with her leash dragging, in preparation for her off leash experience.


Phoenix and I took a walk around my neighborhood and worked on her Heel with the leash dragging. She was having a little trouble and was falling behind at times, so I used her kibble and verbal encouragement to reward her whenever she kept up with me. She was a little distracted with a few dogs in their front yard, but Phoenix made no approach and just looked their way as we continued on our walk. I had a cookout and had dinner in my backyard, while Phoenix enjoyed some playtime with my son and nephew.


Phoenix and I went out to a local park today and worked on her Extended Down. She did well with other dogs in the area, but she came out of it a few times due to some ducks that caught her attention. She tried to approach them, but I redirected her by going the opposite way, and she showed no signs of reactivity or lunging as we passed them by. After a few laps around the pond, I was able to drop her leash and continue our session. She adjusted well, and I was able to have Phoenix maintain her Down for about ninety seconds with the ducks serving as a distraction.


Phoenix and I have been working on Door Manners since day one of training. She would always want to be the first one to go through whenever a door was open. To help Phoenix into not doing so, I asked her to Down and then I made the approach towards the door. If she sat up as I opened it, I would close it and try again. Every day that we worked on it, I increased her time to have her in a down longer, and she has done great in reaching her two minute goal.


Phoenix and I drove out to a local park today and began working on her off leash conditioning. Today’s session consisted of Heel and Extended Down, in which she had a little trouble maintaining her Down, but we worked on it and got it cleaned up. Moving forward, Phoenix and I will begin piecing everything she has learned together, and will continue working off leash for the remainder of her program.


Phoenix and I worked all of her commands today and she did very well with distractions all around her. She did come out of her Down on a few occasions, but we reset, and Phoenix was able to maintain her position. She has also improved with her Greeting Manners and is able to Sit or Down when someone says hello to her. Phoenix will be working on her Final the next couple of days as it is going to be the main focus from here on out.


Phoenix and I have been working on her Food Manners throughout the time she has been in training. When I would place her food bowl on the ground, she would wait and not approach it until I stepped away. Once I stepped back, she would then make her way to the bowl to start eating. I picked up the bowl, reset her by asking her to Sit again, and start the process over again. After a few repetitions, Phoenix caught on to what I was asking, and I slowly began increasing distance and duration. We stayed consistent, increasing time everyday, and Phoenix has learned to wait patiently for her food.


Phoenix has completed her Two Week Board and Train Program and is ready to come home. I enjoyed having this bundle of energy with me for the past fourteen days and I am looking forward to showing you what she has learned. I want to thank you for trusting me with her while she was under my care, and I am grateful for having the opportunity to be her trainer. We became great friends and I am going to miss her companionship. She was great in her Final video and it will be up in the coming weeks. Thank you Phoenix!


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