Monday, January 23, 2012

Training and walking Gozer

There's never a dull day with Gozer around!

At training we're learning how to get our dogs to come to us. Each owner tried out the command individually by showing the dog a treat, walking some distance away, and then saying "Come!" followed by a stream of chatter to keep the dog running towards their voice. We were told that we could say anything except the dog's name and the word "come" in that stream of chatter.

When I did it the first time, I kept in mind that I was supposed to say anything but "Gozer" and "come" and ended up saying "Come Gozer girl Gozer Gozer Gozer come come come come Gozer come!" Yep, I said exactly - and almost only - the words I was specifically told not to say. It was like being told not to think about white elephants and only thinking about them.

We discovered that Gozer responds very well to strong male voices. Every time a male called "come" to his dog, she started forward. it was pretty cute to see :)

We got a bunch of snow over the weekend so Gozer was wearing her booties. While I liked the look of the Muttluks, they really haven't held up well. The serging on the inside is coming off and the toes are wearing out. They're also not waterproof and they take a while to dry out. As well, we've discovered that the velcro that keeps them closed tightens across her front dew claws, making her a little uncomfortable. We need a new solution.

I've looked into the idea of the creams that can be put on the dog's feet to prevent cracking and to create a physical barrier against salt and snow. However, she doesn't seem to have problems with her pads cracking and I don't really see how the cream could prevent snow- or ice-ball formation between her pads. Therefore, I don't see the cream as really being the best option for her and I think we need to find new booties. I'm currently doing research to try and find some that will work better for her.

I never thought that I'd be the kind of furparent who would do research on dog booties for her dog. Clearly, that's who I am. I do it because I want my furbaby to be happy and comfortable and well-trained. If she can look stylish, so much the better.

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