Puppy class #2

My little angel went to her second puppy class last night. In class we did name recognition, down, stay, polite greetings, nail trimming/husbandry, and free play.

The free play sessions are interesting. Pflouff is a body slammer. She wants to use her weight to push other puppies to the ground. There’s a goldendoodle pup who has a similar play style to Pflouff, and you’d think they would play together. Um, no. Pflouff is attracted to the toy poodle who runs pell mell zoomies around the room. Pflouff chases her and pins her over and over.

Obnoxious? Well, not if Nina, the toy poodle, has anything to say about it. Split them up, and she runs right back to Pflouff. No whines or cries from her either. I think Nina is having a blast! And I know Pflouff is. Still, Pflouff outweighs her by a good 20 pounds already, so we have to watch them carefully. It’s kind of neat though. Pflouff doesn’t put all of her weight on Nina. She’ll crouch over her — just enough to hold her down but not enough to hurt her.

I expect, though, that this is why, when she went to daycare, they had her playing with the big dogs, rather than the puppies. I have to say, too, that although probably rougher than they’d like, her play with the puppies in class is more gentle than her play with her siblings. They were mean to each other!

Anyway, class was great fun. Pflouff was much more distracted this time, so I was very glad I had the screens to keep her from focusing on the others. I really, really need to get her out more, so she can learn to focus in distracting environments. I’ll try to run to Sam’s (pet supply store) today or tomorrow — that will be a good place to train.

I teach some things differently than they do, but that’s totally okay. For example, they teach stay by using a verbal “stay” cue plus a hand signal, and they feed during the behavior a little differently than I do. I, on the other hand, would prefer to have the position cue (sit, down, stand, mat) mean “and stay there until released” rather than having a separate stay cue. Those differences are minor, and it doesn’t matter if I teach their way during class. Believe me — there are a million different ways to teach any particular behavior and any number of them are effective!

I need to really buckle down though. Since she was sick part of last week, I missed several days of training because she was eating only that gross canned food.

Best part about puppy class? It wears her out! She slept on the way home and went to bed as soon as I could get her upstairs. Slept like a log all night too. I pottied her a couple of times not because she asked but because I was up for other things and figured, if I didn’t take her, she’d just wake up and ask to go a few minutes later.

(Really, is it any wonder that my fantasies involve pitch black rooms, no interruptions, and long hours of sleep?)

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