Saturday, October 1, 2011

Darby Push and other random things...

Darby is now 5 months old and still growing like a weed.  He is the same length as Serena (I think his tail might actually be longer) and is about an inch shorter than her at the shoulder.  I haven't weighed him recently but I think he is pushing 50 pounds.  He is a delight to work with.  Yesterday I decided to have a formal training session with him (normally we just work on things while he is with me).  He gets so excited when we do a formal training session.  This puppy is so food motivated!  I pull out kibble and he is bouncing off the walls trying to get it.  He has started doing what Serena does when I have food; he will go through all the commands he knows thinking that will get him food even though I didn't ask him to do anything!

I decided to work on "push" yesterday.  Both Alice and I had worked with him with the push board (a plastic board that has a hole in it, that if he pushes it with his nose our fingers with a treat come through the hole.)  He was doing super good with the push board.  Alice also had been working on him pushing doors to come get her (like she goes into the bathroom, closes the door part way and then says Darby "push" and in order to get to her he has to use his nose to push open the door.)  All this had been going super well so I decided to just go straight to cabinets and drawers.  My cabinet doors close super easily so we started with that because all he really had to do was touch it slightly with his nose and it would slam shut.  Here is a video of him closing the cabinet.  This was after about 10 min of practicing on it.

Notice how he knows what "thats it" means.  I never used this command with Serena because I didn't know how to use it or understand the importance and I tried to use it with Jack but never really got to the point where I saw it working.  I have been using it with Darby and oh boy does it work.  "Thats it" means you are getting close keep going.  I said it when he looked at the cabinet then he started pushing it.  So cool to actually see "thats it" work!

We also worked on pushing drawers closed.  These are a little hard to push closed so he wasn't so sure what he had to do.  I didn't get a video of it but he figured out he was supposed to touch the drawer with his nose and apply pressure.  Once we got there I moved back to the cabinet so that he could actually close something and succeed with push.  

On another note; Darby is fully registered with the AKC.  His registered name is MAWP Sturbridge's Can't Touch This.  MAWP is for My Angel With Paws, Sturbridge is the kennel that bred him and Can't Touch This is from the MC Hammer Song.  Alice and I decided on Can't Touch This because every time he gets a toy from Serena or Jack he moves around like MC Hammer and acts like he is awesome.  Plus it is super fun to break into dance after saying his name.  When I registered him I also bought a certified pedigree.  So fancy!  His momma and daddy both have OFA excellent hips.  Excellent is very hard to achieve on the OFA scale.  The scale is Excellent being the best, Good, Normal, Fair and Poor being the worse.  Serena's hips were falling under the fair and poor categories.  We are hoping that since Darby's parents have such good hips that he will too!  He is also fully registered so that if he is bred, his puppies can also be AKC registered.  Darby is a high class boy!

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