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Sarang | Labrador Shepherd Mix | La Habra Heights, CA | In -Training


Meet Sarang! A happy, playful 4 month old Labrador Shepherd Mix from La Habra Heights, CA. Sarang has joined us for our Three Week Puppy Board and Train Program to work on her Greeting Manners, Potty Training, and Proper Socialization. Stay tuned for her 21 day transformation!


 

Pupdate 4/10/2022


Sarang and I spent our day getting her settled in to my house. I introduced her to my dogs through the gate. At first she hesitated to approach any of them, but after I walked her around, gradually getting closer to the gate, she worked up the courage to say hi. She then met my other Board and Train dog Logan. They got along in no time and ran around the backyard, playing chase. I then began to practice the name game with Sarang. Any time I called her by her name and she offered me her attention, I marked it with a Yes and rewarded her. She picked up on this rather quickly, and even began to come and sit in front of me every time I said her name. We then took a stroll around the neighborhood together without training, just exposure to her new surroundings to get her comfortable. We will begin working on more obedience tomorrow!



 

Pupdate 4/11/2022





Today Sarang and I ventured out to the Citadel Outlets! Before we left to the citadel I introduced her to the prong collar. The prong collar is a tool I use to teach Sarang which direction to go. I create a pressure path for her and the second she follows it I turn the pressure off. Sarang fought the path of the leash initially, but after some time and practice she learned that the only way to turn that pressure off was to follow it. I rewarded her when she would follow it the first time. We then worked on it some more at the citadel outlets. She was very anxious at the citadel, unsure of her surroundings. She walked behind me which was a sign of her being fearful. I encouraged her to stick by my side, rewarding her when she would come closer to me. I made frequent turns and marked it with a Yes when she would follow me or make eye contact. Anytime I changed direction or walked forward from a stationary position I cued Heel. Heel is the action of Sarang staying by my left side during a walk. If I turn she needs to turn with me and if I stop walking she is expected to Sit. Towards the end of the session she was offering me a lot more eye contact and was becoming more confident with her walk. We then practiced Place which is the action of her coming on top of a surface that I guide her to. This helps build trust in our relationship, confidence in herself, and it provides a calm state of mind for her as well which helps eliminate any anxiety she may be having. Sarang needed some help on to the bench at first. Once we practiced multiple times she got the hang of it and jumped on all by herself. Great job Sarang!


 

Pupdate 4/12/2022



Sarang and I took a trip to the local skate park today. There were some distractions, such as people playing basketball, tennis, and kids running around the playground. It took Sarang a minute to soak in her surroundings. She can be quite anxious when first arriving somewhere new. After walking around with her to help acclimate her to her new environment, we began to work on Heel. Her Heel is improving and she kept up with me today, not following behind. She likes to pick up things off the floor occasionally. When she does this, I cue “Off”. Off means she needs to leave alone anything that she is trying to get into. If she doesn’t follow the Off Cue, I then apply a gentle leash pop which grabs her attention and stops her in her tracks. We then practiced her Come to Sit which is the action of her walking to my right side, to come behind me and sit by my left side. I guided her with a little leash pressure but luring her with hand signals seemed to help her the most. We added some duration to her Extended Sit today. She is expected to stay in the Sit position until I release her with the cue “Break”. Once she hears this she knows she is free to go. Her Extended Sit reached 40 seconds today which is good for only her 3rd day! The goal is to reach 1 minute and 30 seconds.


 

Pupdate 4/13/2022





Sarang and I ventured out to the Block of Orange today. There were crowds of people, other dogs, and new noises/smells for her to encounter. At first Sarang was unsure about walking through a crowd. After some encouragement, and rewards when she overcame her uncertainty, she began to feel more confident walking past crowds of people. I reward Sarang every other time she checks in with me during her walks. Her eye contact has become very consistent during her Heel as you can see in the picture above. It is great for Sarang to check in with me in questionable scenarios, this is a sign of trust in our relationship. We then worked on her Extended Sit which she was able to do for 30 seconds. We are building consistency with her Down as well. Since she is quite anxious in new environments that is a harder command for her to hold. We will keep working on building consistency in these distracting environments.


 

Pupdate 4/14/2022


Sarang and I took a trip to the Citadel Outlets today. She did significantly better with her Heel compared to the first time we came here. She is becoming a lot more confident walking by my side instead of behind me. She is also not as hesitant to walk through crowds. There were plenty of distractions here, the biggest distraction being other dogs. Sarang loves to play with other dogs and becomes anxious when we stay in one spot for too long while other dogs are present. I make sure to reward her when she offers me her attention, especially around other dogs. In the video you can see she almost followed through with her Come to Sit until she saw another dog pass by. That was when I helped her finish by applying leash pressure in the direction I wanted her to go. She fought it initially because she was determined to see the other dog. Once we tried it again she didn’t fight the pressure of the leash as much. We will keep working around distractions to build the consistency that we are looking for.


 

Pupdate 4/15/2022





Sarang and I took a trip to The Home Depot today. It was a good day to test how she does around loud noises, and large moving objects. We began by taking a stroll outside of the store together, taking frequent breaks to help her become comfortable with her surroundings. It didn’t take Sarang long to be ready to head inside. Inside of the store there were a lot of distractions, for example a loud drill machine. There were also loud paint machines, and carts rolling around with large objects in them. Sarang was curious of these loud noises, yet not afraid. I kept walking her near the noises to see how long it would take for her to check in with me. She checked in with me within a minute of being there which is great since she didn’t fixate on anything. Sarang held her Extended Sit for 45 seconds today around all of these distractions. Her heel was also consistent. Whenever I felt she was trying to take the lead, I turned the opposite direction reminding her to Heel and adding a gentle leash pop if she didn’t follow my direction. Sarang was curious with things in the store and I let her explore whenever she was on break. She voluntarily jumped on a cart outside that I was making noises with, moving it around. This was a great confidence building exercise for her!


 

Pupdate 4/16/2022



Sarang and I took our field trip today to the Home Run Dog Park. There were plenty of dogs running around and playing off leash in the park. We Heeled on the outskirts of the dog park for quite some time until I saw Sarang begin to check in with me more often. Once I saw that Sarang was more attentive to me and released some energy, we started our training. Her Heel has improved greatly and she is now staying by my side with a loose leash. Dogs are a big distraction for her which is why we came here today. Considering how intrigued she is by dogs, she offered me eye contact which wasn’t easy for her, especially since it was our first time near a dog park together. I rewarded her whenever she looked at a dog and then looked at me. As you can see in the video, she did this with a dog that passed by us while she was in her Extended Sit. She held her Sit, looked at the dog then looked at me. As soon as she did this, I marked it with a yes, rewarded her and then released her. The more I mark this behavior the more she will do this out of habit. I then worked on her Come to Sit with her. We are now doing her Come to Sit only on my left side, instead of her coming behind me. She has more fun with doing this command only on my left side which is completely understandable considering it takes her a while to be okay with leash pressure. Sarang doesn’t cry during her walks anymore which is a great improvement for her. She is also learning to wait at each door that we cross until I release her with the cue “Break”! We will keep adding duration to her commands and distance will be added soon.


 

Pupdate 4/17/2022




Sarang and I focused our work today on the Place command. She is building consistency with going to Place on the elevated dog cot that I have. I point to to it, saying “Place“ which is her cue to go on top of the surface and either offer a Sit or Down. She is expected to stay there until I release her. Sarang enjoyed going to Place and hopped right on each time. She stayed there for 40 seconds consistently. I then introduced her to Down. Down is a great command to use to help Sarang be in a more calm state of mind. I lured her with a treat towards the floor the first set of repetitions. Once I saw her performing it consistently I faded out the treat by signaling Down without a treat in my hand. Once she offered the behavior, I rewarded her with a treat that was in my other hand. This teaches her that she will still be rewarded, even if I don’t have a treat in my hand when I give the cue. Sarang picked up on this quickly. I then rewarded her in 5 second increments, while she stayed in position. This is how we build duration with her Down.


 

Pupdate 4/18/2022


Sarang and I went on a trip to the Wilderness Park today. We worked a lot on her Place command with different surfaces. Sarang lacks confidence at times in new environments which is why it can be difficult for her to trust climbing on top of unfamiliar objects. I help her climb different surfaces with a little leash pressure towards it and encouraging her a lot. She built enough confidence today to climb a few new surfaces on the playground. Once we were able to get consistency with that we worked on her Come to Sit and Heel. At first Sarang struggled to offer me eye contact but once she became acclimated to her surroundings she began to check in with me more often. Her Car Manners are improving and she can now climb into the car from the backseat. We will now begin to work on her Car Manners, climbing in from the trunk which is more of a challenge!



 

Pupdate 4/19/2022






Today Sarang and I ventured out to the local Petco store! Before we left we worked on her Car Manners. I challenged her by having her try jumping in the trunk for the first time. I used a toy to get her excited and lured her towards the trunk with it. Sarang was full of playful energy and was able to jump up all on her own! I offered her a lot of praise and played with her once she performed it multiple times. After practicing Car Manners we then went inside the Petco store. We Heeled around the whole store at first to expose her to her new surroundings. There were different kinds of animals, noises and smells for her to soak in. Once we did proper exposure, we began to work on obedience. Sarang’s Heel is consistent. It took her a while to begin to check in with me on her own. Once she began to do so we worked on her Extended Sit and Down. Sarang is consistently at a minute with her Extended Down and Sit. She waits for my release and I make sure to reward her in increments of 30 seconds as she stays in that position. For the Down command I reward her in increments of 15 seconds since she is still new to this behavior. I threw treats all around her and desensitized her to loud noises as well. Sarang did great and held her position the entire time. I gave her frequent breaks because at times Sarang gets anxious once she is in a position for too long. Breaks are a great way to decompress her anxiety.



 

Pupdate 4/20/2022


Sarang and I took a trip to Pan Pacific Park today! There were tons of distractions for her, one of the biggest ones being dogs running around off leash, playing with toys. At first this was a lot for Sarang to soak in. She had a difficult time holding her Extended Sit and Down. I practiced sending her to Place multiple times, then began to work on her Extended Down. I started with rewarding her every 15 seconds she held position. If she got up I added leash pressure back towards the ground. Once Sarang became consistent I added more time between rewards. By the end of our session, Sarang held her Extended Down for a minute and a half while being rewarded in 30 second increments. I know this was a difficult task for her considering she has anxiety when in new environments. This was also Sarang’s first day on a 15 ft leash. She did great with me adding distance away from her while she stayed in position. Great progress Sarang!



 

Pupdate 4/21/2022




Sarang and I worked on everything she has learned so far at the Citadel Outlets today with distance. We Heeled all around the outlets together and after a few minutes of walking around, Sarang began to check in with me. I reward her whenever she offers me eye contact voluntarily. She has a hard time doing this initially due to all of her anxiety. After working on Heel, we worked on her Extended Sit and Down. Sarang has met our goal of a minute and a half. At times she gets up so we are working on building that consistency. The more we practice it the better she will be at this. She was able to hold her Sit and Down while crowds of people passed her. I increased the distance by walking to the end of the 15 ft leash while she stayed in position. Her Place command has improved and she no longer needs my help to jump on different surfaces. Sarang’s confidence is building in all of these different environments! Once we got home Sarang ran around and played with the other dogs. If she plays too rough I cue “Off”. If she continues to play rough I add a leash pop to deter the behavior from happening again. Sarang is beginning to understand that “Off” will be reinforced every time she ignores it so it is easier to listen to the first time. Now when I say “Off” she stops and walks over to me!



 

Pupdate 4/22/2022


Sarang and I ventured out to the Santa Monica Pier today! This was a new environment for her with a lot of distractions. Sarang didn’t take too long to begin checking in with me during her Heel. I rewarded her frequently when we initially got to the Pier. We practiced Greeting Manners with friendly people that wanted to say hi. Sarang fought the urge to jump on these new people as I reminded her to Sit. If she were to get up the petting stops. I have added distance away from her while stays in position for her Extended Sit and Down while in Place. She is now able to hold her commands for a minute and a half which is the goal. This was great in a new environment with a lot of distractions and crowds of people. We will keep proofing all of her commands around new environments and build more distance as well.


 

Pupdate 4/23/2022






Sarang and I took a field trip to Rosie’s dog beach today. We practiced our Heel around all of the distractions at the beach. Sarang checked in with me frequently. We then worked on her Extended Sit and Down. She was able to hold it the entire time which I know was difficult for her as dogs passed right by us. I gave her frequent breaks to keep her engaged. I was able to create distance away from her as she gradually got more comfortable. Great job Sarang!



 

Pupdate 4/24/2022


Sarang and I practiced everything she has learned so far at the Heritage Park. There were a ton of loud distractions, like a loud mariachi band at a party nearby. She was also very interested in the squirrels running around nearby. Sarang worked through these distractions. We first worked at a distance then came closer and closer to the distractions as she became more engaged with me. We first practiced her Heel. She followed me on my left side as I made 180 turns going left and right. I use my left hand as a target, which helps Sarang look up at me as she walks by my side. She was able to hold her Extended Sit, Down and Place for a minute and a half as people and a few dogs passed by her. Sarang consistently comes to my left side when I call her, and if she sits too far away from my side I immediately have her perform the behavior again, adjusting her closer to my side. Excellent progress Sarang!



 

Pupdate 4/25/2022





Sarang and I went to Huntington Beach today to work on everything she has learned with distance and distractions! Sarang did great with all of the distractions. The only thing she was unsure about was the big bicycles with multiple people on it. I began to walk Sarang closer to those big bicycles to desensitize her to it. As time went on Sarang stopped avoiding it and was able to walk past it. She held her Extended Sit in place consistently, and only struggled with the Down command at first. As we practiced more around the bicyclists, Sarang felt comfortable enough to lay down and let everyone pass by her. Sarang is very aware of her surroundings and anxious about it, but has gotten into the habit of checking in with me for reassurance. I always mark it with a yes and reward her with praise or treats when she looks my way around questionable scenarios. This is how we build trust and confidence!



 

Pupdate 4/26/2022


Sarang and I worked on proofing all of her commands at El Dorado Park today. We met with the other trainers and used their dogs as a big distraction. We practiced her Extended Sit and Down while the other trainers circled around her. At first Sarang got up before I released her with the cue “Break!”. After adding a leash pop to help put her back in the stationary position, she held her position until I released her. Sarang’s Come to Sit is improving. She now offers the behavior more quickly. Once Sarang has been training for a while she gets a little anxious and begins to whine. I give her frequent breaks to always leave training on a positive note.


 

Pupdate 4/27/2022




Sarang and I began our day by Heeling around the neighborhood on our way to the local park. We passed by gardeners with loud equipment like leaf blowers and lawn mowers. Sarang was spooked from it at first. We worked our way from a distance, then gradually got closer to them. I rewarded Sarang more frequently around this scary environment , using classical conditioning. I let Sarang investigate the new noises slowly, increasing the rewards around it to create a positive response and teach Sarang to check in with me around it. Sarang offered me her attention more frequently as she became more comfortable being around it. We were able to walk by it with a consistent Heel after working around it. There was also a lady with a stroller that walked by us. Sarang was initially scared of it. I used this as a training opportunity to expose Sarang to it by walking near it. Through desensitization Sarang was able to walk closer to it. Once we arrived to the park we were able to work on all of her commands focusing our work on her Extended Sits and Downs. Sarang is becoming more and more consistent with all of her commands.



 

Pupdate 4/28/2022


Sarang and I worked on proofing all of her commands at The Citadel Outlets. We have focused most of our work on her Extended Place and Sit because this is what she struggles with the most. She is very energetic and curious of her surroundings. If she gets up from a stationary before I release her with the cue “Break!” I help her back into position with leash pressure. I reward her in increments of 45 seconds now while she stays in position. We were able to practice her Greeting Manners as well. At times Sarang likes to nip when excited. I correct this by applying a leash pop and telling her “Off”. After a few leash pops Sarang was able to say hi without nipping.



 

Pupdate 4/29/2022





Sarang and I have been emphasizing our work around different distractions. She is gaining confidence in new environments and checks in with me frequently around questionable new sounds and objects. We worked on her Extended Sits and Downs. Sarang made a new record today! I wanted to see how long she can hold her Down for and she made it to 4 minutes! I rewarded her once every minute. Paying her while she stays in position is what has motivated her to stay in those stationary positions. Promoting calmness is key for an excitable pup like Sarang. We worked on her Greeting Manners as well only petting her while she appears calm and applying leash pops when she nips. She is not nipping as much as she did before and I can see her fighting that impulse while being pet. At times she licks instead of nipping which is okay if it is not too aggressive. Aggressively licking can lead to nipping so we only want to reinforce the gentle licks.


 

Pupdate 4/30/2022


Sarang and I spent our day working on her Manners, beginning with the Door Manners. A door is an important threshold that teaches her boundaries. Sarang’s routine at each door we pass is to sit, waiting for my release to cross it. She should never be the first one out of the door. As she continues to practice this she will automatically offer a sit at each door. After working on her Door Manners we began to work on her Heel on the way to the park. Sarang is very distracted at times while on walks so I encourage her to check in with me frequently by always starting off our walk with marking any eye contact she gives me with a yes and praise. Once we got to the park, we came across friendly people that wanted to say hi and practiced our Greeting Manners. Sarang was gentle with the people that said hi, not aggressively licking or trying to nip. Great work Sarang!


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