Photobucket Photobucket Therapy dogs spread happiness, love, and cheer to people who otherwise might be lonely, sad or slow to heal. This is the journey of Cayman, a longhair miniature dachshund and his journey and experiences visiting becoming a therapy dog.

Did you know that pet visits often spark good memories of a person's own pets? Dogs often can reach people and children who have withdrawn from the world. It's been suggested by science that petting a dog can lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety and stress, and promote healing.



Guestbook- PLEASE Sign!

Loyal Followers

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Therapy Dog Training Starts Now!

Cayman is gonna be one busy pup. I have read and reread “The Canine Good Citizen- Every Dog Can Be One” over and over and based on the training methods outlined in that book, have devised a customized training program just for Cayman.

The book describes an 8 week training course. Well, I got much more time than that. I have 31 weeks to be exact before Cayman turns a year old and in turn can be tested for his CGC certification. So I made my own training program that consists of training, everyday, beginning today. For each of the weekly training exercises outlined in the book, I have taken them and stretched them over the course of about three weeks, four for the exercises I think he would need the most help with.

Now I just need to commit. It’s going to take patience, and time, but I think it will be well worth it. He’s a really smart boy, and if I see he has mastered a behavior (as in he performs it on command only without any assistance from me for at 80% of the time) then I will move on a little faster or throw some “tricks” in instead of the core exercises. So far he has gotten the “High Five” down. Even with those short little legs, he gets them up there!

This week’s schedule consists of the following exercises:

1. Basic Control- The 30 Minute Down: This exercise physically placed Cayman into the Down position. This teaches him who is in charge which makes all further training that much easier. It basically makes Cayman lay in the Down position up to 30 minutes. He is not to get up or break the Down until I give the “Ok” command, even if it means he has fallen asleep. Hmm. This sounds like a challenge.

2. Continue to practice the “Sit” command, which he is really good at already, just not consistent. We are to have him practice his sit at least 5 times in the session.

3. Continue to practice the “Stay” command for at least 30 seconds, 5 times per session. Cayman is pretty good at the Stay, for even longer than 30 seconds so this should be a breeze.

4. For fun I threw in the “Rollover” command. Cayman begun learning this during his Puppy Education class at Petco but still needs some practice. And of course his high five.

So that’s just week’s training scheduled. Hmm, I am beginning to wonder if I sound like on of those parents that pushes their kids into all kinds of extra curriculative activities! But then again when you break down just how long I would be tearing my puppy away from chewing up my daughter’s pacifiers and wrestling with the other dogs or chasing lizards on the patio, it really isn’t but about an hour tops. That’s about how long his Puppy Education class at Petco was and he did so well then! I think the hardest is going to be that 30 Minute Down. Wish me luck!

1 comment:

Neabear said...

Wow! Sounds like Cayman is doing well with the training. A well behaved dog will make life so much easier in the long run. Of course I am sure you know that. So how is everyone else doing?