I believe in positive, force-free dog training. If you’ve seen me around town, I’m the girl with the 4-foot loose leash, the clicker hanging around my left wrist, a poop-bag looped around my right ring finger, and the bait-bag clipped to my jacket. I’m committed. I’m thorough on the click-n-treat reinforcement of the behavior I want. I avoid the “N” word.
But you know what makes this hard? Let me tell you: freezing rain and snow, short dark days, and cotton gloves. Who makes cotton gloves? And, more importantly, why do I have so many of them? They serve absolutely no purpose in life. If it’s warm enough for cotton, you don’t need gloves. If it’s cold and wet, then cotton gloves are worse than no gloves. Trust me on this.
Then there’s Miss Daisy who seems to need ideal conditions to, um, do her business. Not once, not twice, but three times she started to assume the position only to be side-tracked by a barking dog, a garage door opening, or a soggy piece of paper toweling floating by in the flooding streets. (Did I mention the cotton gloves? The wet cold night?)
Then there’s the whole allergy issue. It turns out that the reason Daisy’s had so many infections and we’ve been to the vet so often is that she’s allergic to dog food. So all that organic, all natural food I’ve been buying? Yeah, not so much. No more peanut butter, bullsticks, rawhide chewies, dog bones, or training treats.
All of which kind of complicates the whole training thing. Clearly I need to quit my job and begin making single-source protein treats.
And get to work knitting some woolen water-proof gloves.