We went to the park yesterday with both the dogs. It is a great big park that has lots of play areas, skate parks a great big pond with all the ducks and geese included and it is generally very busy. I thought it would be great to take both the dogs down as a training exercise (I usually like to walk where there are no people at all, very unsociable!). The park also has lots of wide open fields etc.
We walked around the busy parts of the park first, with the boys on their leads, to get them used to all the chaos and to show Zephy that it’s no big deal. He did very well I have to say. After this we went to an area of the fields where there was no one around to do some sit, sit and stay and some recall. I had the two dogs sitting at my feet, still on leads and Ben was a short distance away. I had just unclipped Zephy’s lead to do some recall with him when a very friendly collie type dog came running over and jumped all over the boys. Well at this point I am holding Echo by his collar to stop him pulling me off my feet and Zeph is trying his best to not get stood on. The owner sauntered over, making a poor attempt to call the dog in and even said to the dog “come on ****** you’re disrupting training”….If you know I’m trying to train my dogs and you can see I am trying, then why are you letting your dog run wild!?? I stayed calm though and she eventually came to gather her dog. It took me a minute or two but I calmed down my two and we tried again.
After three good recalls from Zeph, we were interrupted by yet another dog! Owner nowhere to be seen or heard at all. A big black lab that took to slavering all over Zeph while he was with Ben. Again, I was wrestling with Echo who was desperate to say hello. Still no owner to be seen or heard, eventually though, the dog took itself away. I was starting to get annoyed. If my dogs are off lead, I am forever calling them back and watching them. And unless I see it is ok, I don’t let my dogs go and bother others.
(Ben with Zephy and the black lab that was being nosy)
Eventually we were left to it and Zephy did very well on his recall and he managed a few sit and stays which is fab. Echo had a turn as well. His recall was not perfect as he thought it was a game but managed all the sits and all the stays. We made it more difficult for him as he is older. They both behaved very well considering the interruptions.
(Zephys recall excitement, below)
(Me with dogs, having recalled them and made them sit)
On the way back tot he car the first dog that interrupted was at us again. Now both my boys were again, on the lead and had been walking nicely. It is hard enough to train dogs without other dog owners allowing their dogs to run riot; Not that my dogs are always the best behaved but at the very least I apologise profusely!
Anyway, wee rant over. I am very pleased with how the boys behaved and training is coming along nicely with Zeph. Still having to correct Echo but I think he is just being cheeky at the moment. Hopefully he gets back to listening soon!