Laurae Posted August 6, 2007 Report Share Posted August 6, 2007 Hi all, Sorry, this is long. I can't ever seem to write for advice without feeling like I need to give every single detail. About two months ago, a friend of mine gave me her trained dog Craig, so I could perhaps learn to handle a dog a little faster. The idea was that I wouldn't have to concentrate on teaching this dog, as I am doing with my other (novice) dog Taz. It seemed like a win-win situation for everyone, as Craig is nine and might be losing some of his hearing, so he can work closer in with me. The first month or so I had him was just great--he listened to everything I asked and was very cooperative on the field. Then the honeymoon sort of ended, and he probably realized I don't really know what I'm doing so he stopped wanting to lie down and call off, and he even started rushing through the gates to bust up the sheep as though he were an untrained puppy. Basically, he began walking all over me. I tried to get tougher with him, but my authority was probably a bit undermined by my lousy timing as I am learning to drive with him. Last weekend, we went to a Kathy Knox clinic, and he was. just. awful. He ran fine the first time out but I had him in an arena then. The second time, in the big field, he was super tight and when Kathy didn't let him get away with that, he fought her over and over again the full time he was out there. It was horrible. But she did talk to me a bit about not doing super huge outruns or even much driving with him yet and we worked on my timing and my corrections (with Taz as well), and I feel I have a much better idea of how to work with Craig now. We came home and I've worked him twice now, and he's a terrific dog again--very responsive and relaxed, wide, calls off and lies down easily etc. So yay, hopefully I'm on the right path there. One thing Kathy stressed was that I should no longer work with Elaine, who gave me Craig, or even have him see her at all, for a while. My regular trainer also sugested this, but Craig is a quirky dog and I hoped the benefits of having Elaine help us would outweigh the negatives. Craig listens to both of us when we're on the field, but he usually wants to go home with Elaine. Kathy suggested that Craig might not truly see me as his person yet and may be a bit confused about the whole situation--he may think I am just babysitting him or something. This would be undermining our own bonding process, and extend the time it might take for him to really get with me. So I've decided to follow this advice, and not see Elaine for a while. This is going to be difficult, since we have mutual friends and sometimes do workdays, not to mention going to the same trials. I was wondering, what are people's opinions about how long we should not see her? A month? Two months? Six months? Any advice or opinions are very welcome and appreciated. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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