Friday, February 26, 2010


It's true dog training in not something new in our house, but recently we started the Training Levels program by Sue Ailsby. There will be many more details to come, but for today an example in the Levels effectiveness.

One important skill for any dog to have is to know what they can have and when they can have it. Enter the common  'leave it' command. In the Levels program 'leave it' is covered under the skill called Zen. In short it means teaching the 4legged one to have self control. A valuable lesson no doubt, no matter how many legs you have!LOL

Due to the small amount of training we had done w/ 'leave it' Maizey's response was to simply sit down next to whatever undesirable thing she should be turning away from it. So on good advice from the folks who know so much about the Levels I started over following the steps in level 1 Zen and since she had the basic concept she shaped a better 'leave it' quickly.

Tonight she showed me just how well she understood. I was eating an orange, something she LOVES, and she was sitting on my lap, but started getting too close to my food. One 'leave it' and she started to insistently try to jump down. Due to her recent knee surgery she isn't allowed to jump right now so I kept stopping her. But she obviously wanted down so I put her down. Where she immediately took about 3 steps back from me and sat down and looked at me with the "see? I did just what you said, where the heck is my treat?" look.LOL

Due to a turn for the worse w/ her knee we really haven't trained the last two days but the levels help them be so reliable! I'm so pleased to have this great info to teach her!

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Lessons From and For 4 Legs has moved to a new address: Where we will continue to learn life's lessons from my little Cavalier King Charles Spaniel's, Maizey and Magnus. Don't miss Meeka's lessons too, by checking the archives of my big girl rescue Rottie. They all teach me so much!