New year, new dog training goals. Mr. N’s 2018 dog training goals include a mix of titles, behavioral modification and new tricks. We took a hiatus from titles last year but this year I’m hoping to add at least two new ones to his arsenal. He has the most random assortment right now (lure coursing, therapy dog work, CGC, trick titles) but hey, the AKC is recognizing “versatile” dogs like him with their new Achiever Dog certificate. His next title and he’ll qualify. Dogs that earn placement and/or titles in three different sports are automatically sent the new certificate if at least one of the titles is earned after December 2017.
We’ll continue to work on behavioral modification as well although there’s no new goals there. Just plugging along to aim for the same lofty ones. And as for tricks, I pick the ones that I think will provide a training challenge and/or look cute.
2018 Dog Training Goals
- Dog reactivity: Maybe this year will be the one where Mr. N can finally walk on leash calmly past another dog on the same sidewalk. He can IF the other dog is facing in the other direction and sleeping and very calm and at the end of a very wide sidewalk but that doesn’t apply to most walking situations. He can keep his calm usually at cafes and restaurants and dog shows and classes and such but dogs on walks really stir him up. I also have a gift certificate for a private training session so hopefully she can give me some additional tips or critique my handling.
- Separation Anxiety: Another one of those things we’re always working on. He’s been calmer about departures recently and runs into the living room to curl up on a chair. I need to get back to filming him regularly so I can keep better track of his progress. Currently there’s plywood boards blocking where his was stationed so hopefully after the renovations to the house are done, it can once again spy on his movements while we’re gone.
- Get his first Obedience title: TEAM is a new online video titling option run by the Fenzi Dog Sports Academy. Mr. N knows about 2/3 of the requirements for the first title and with some platform and pivoting work, he should be able to do the rest. The first level involves things like going around an object, finding a scented object, backing up two feet and finding the front and heel position. I’m signing up for a class and aiming to achieve a title by summer.
- Trick Titles: This is really more a matter of me filming and paying for the titles than extra training. Currently, he has his novice title. He’s known enough tricks to qualify for the Do More With Your Dog titles for a couple of years(?) now. But the Champion title is super expensive though so I think I’m probably going to get his intermediate, advanced and expert title and apply for the AKC Trick Dog Performer title (they’re grandfathering DMWYD titles). So more trick videos upcoming!
- Walking Handstand: One of our 2017 goals was to train a handstand. He backs up to the wall and kicks his back paws up and balances on his two front paws. Now I want to add more duration and eventually have him doing it off the wall and be able to walk for a few feet.
- Fetch Beer/Liquor: I’m working on a modified version of the fetch a beer trick for his size. It’s going to be très adorable.
- TBD Trick: I haven’t decided what else. Rebound? Stacking rings onto a toy? Jump rope? Will take suggestions.
What are your 2018 dog training goals?