In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely try to train him to be semihuman. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog.
~ Edward Hoagland
Breakfast: Special K
The Elegant Gathering
TODAY on DVD
WHATS IN A NAME?
17 June 2004
Check this out:
I dont know where the SPCA got the idea that she was Australian shepherd, unless that was what they were told by either her former owner or the police who arrrested her former owner. Ive been looking through web sites about Aussies and while she has a lot of the personality characteristics, she sure looks more like a Kelpie. Or a Rottweiler. Or a Doberman (all of which have been suggested as possible lineage for her). I like Kat's comment on my guestbook that she's a 100% All American dog.
Doesnt really matter. I named her "Sheila" because of the Australian part of her name, and "Sheila" being a good Aussie name. But Kelpies are true Australian dogs (which Aussies are not, ironically), so if that is part of her heritage, the name still fits.
Today I had a big scare. She disappeared. Totally disappeared in the place where I thought she couldn't possibly disappear. There was nowhere for her to get out of the drainage canal in that spot. The water is too deep for her to cross over to the high road (and I would have seen her there anyway), there were no gaps in the fence, there were bushes planted next to the fence so she couldn't get under it. She was just....gone.
I called and called and finally one woman on the bike path told me she'd seen her at the start of the road, by where the car was parked. Then a jogger we meet, with her two dogs, each morning told me that she'd "come out and greeted them" twice but seemed to be looking for me. I made it all the way back to the car, calling her and finally she was galumphing down the bike path, happy as a clam.
Near as I can figure, I got ahead of her on the bike path and she's not used to that, so when she emerged from the bushes onto the path, she didn't see me and got turned around and headed back the other way looking for me.
It all worked out well, but it reinforced the need for faster training. She's really been pretty good about coming when called, but I think that she just got too far away and couldn't hear me.
I called a professional dog trainer to get a quote on their services, thinking that might be the best way to train me to work with her. But the quote came back with the astronomical figure of $550 for four sessions. I don't think so!!! That might possibly be worth it if she had a lot of bad habits to correct, but she doesn't.
So I've started getting more serious about a training program here at home, with short sessions, right now on the sit-stay command. She picks up on it very quickly--but it's only day 1.
No matter what breed she is, actually, she will be happier--as will we--if she begins to get some manners. Actually, she's really a very good dog and has so few "bad habits" and she picks up things so quickly, that I think training her is going to be a snap, if I can just get trained to do it efficiently.
Interesting news story which Steve found in the newspaper in Omaha:
Naturally, David didn't tell me that things were finally this far along! But I guess since The Martian Child (go read the book--NOW) has gone through so many of these "close but no cigars" situations, he might have been waiting until shooting actually starts before going public with it!