Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Card Shark

Kim and I are teaching our girls to do the majority of tricks from Kyra Sundance's "101 Dog Tricks"." Sunday I worked on teaching Penny how to pull a single card from a deck. This is challenging because both Penny and Maggie are professionally trained hunting dogs (thanks Jenny Broome!) so they have fetching any object hardwired in to mean that they grab the entire object. I'm having to teach them to grab just a tiny corner. Penny picked it up pretty quickly.

The next photo is earlier in the training session and she's grabbing "too much" of the card.

Kim let me borrow (and slime) these cool cards she found on eBay - they are nice and big to make it easier for the girls and also so the audience can see what card the dog pulled. That way I can show the cards to Penny and say - pick out the card that is the most like you!

OK, now pull out the card that matches Maggie!
Smart Poodle!!

Now, you may ask how Maggie is doing with this trick? Well, she grabs an entire card, drops it, tackles it and starts chewing it up. I owe Kim a few cards ;). So we "back-chained" today and just worked on Maggie taking a single card from my hand and holding it. Sometimes you just have to go in teenie tiny baby steps!


Anonymous said...

I love how you describe the difference between how Penny and Maggie approach the “Pick a Card” trick. Darling Penny (the Perfect Poodle) looks like she’s been working this trick for years. Thanks for showing us how it’s done, and for the reminder that sometimes we need to take a step back to build on a trick successfully. QK (Midas and Merlin, who are not as talented as your girls).

Debbie said...

I can't take complete credit for this! I'm using 101 Dog Tricks by Kyra Sundance. Kim gave me the book and motivated me to use it. She has helped me with most of the tricks and a few she taught my girls all on her own. The LOVE Auntie Kim ;) Wait a minute - Midas is way better trained than my girls and Merlin is still a pup!!!

Heidi Fuge said...

Very cool, Deb! Can't wait to see how you incorporate this into a freestyle routine.