Pixie is taking treats reliably now.
She almost never gets fearful of us passing them to her, she rarely snubs them, and she’s learning that my verbal marker “yes!” means she is getting a treat. Time for training!
We’re not working on much at the moment.
She has learned sit, and although she can rarely be a little slow to respond, she can do it even whilst the cats are nearby.
I’m gradually teaching her a positive interrupter, I’m rewarding her every time she responds to her name, and I hope that this will lead up to her coming when called – she gets very scared when I try call her to me, and I imagine that’s because she has been punished in the past.
I snuck in some body handling work where I tap different parts of her body and mark her as I make contact, then give her a treat. She doesn’t get scared by this at all, I’ve been tapping her chin, side and front leg so far.
I’m also pairing a clicker with treats as of today.
She does tire from training quickly, and gets overwhelmed. I have to keep sessions less than a minute or two long, so we always end on a positive.
We spent a lot of time today practicing being calm around the cats. The results were great 🙂
Neither of the boys would have stayed so close for so long before this. Pecan wasn’t scared of Pixie, but she would get excited if he was close for too long and start trying to play with him, which would send him scattering.
Enzo wouldn’t go anywhere near her so we really did cover some ground today 🙂
And we had our second Rey introduction!
Rey is very much a lovable bull in a china shop. He sees a dog moving and very much thinks that’s an invitation to play, but he tries very hard to understand calming signals and move off when the dog’s nervous or not interested.
Pixie confuses him because, although she is obviously very scared, when he moves away so she can feel more confident, she moves after him!
I think a nervous position has become second nature to Pixie, and she adapts it much more readily than most dogs.
As we get to know her we’re finding it easier to see when she is truly very scared, and when she is anxious or nervous – tail tucks that last over five minutes, making herself small and staying still, and trembling are her most obvious and immediate signals of fear.
She desperately wants to play with Raiden, and when she’s ready Rey will be very happy to oblige 🙂
I tried to turn the volume down on the clips where Rey is yapping. He’s an *extremely* vocal dog, especially when playing, and I appreciate his bark is somewhat piercing hahaha!
They both did really well though – Rey was nonthreatening and happy, and Pixie was nervous but wanted to play. Raiden also showed some great impulse control ^__^
Also please excuse the messy floor – we have to take Pixie to sit in our small front porch whilst one of us vacuums (it’s the least stressful option) so we’ve only managed a few hoovering sessions since she came!
Finally I apologise for the dodgy camera-work…I had it hanging round my neck and had to keep letting it swing as I doled out treats!!