Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Training Question

So here is a question for my blogger friends about training.

Truffie seems to bee a little scared of walking through narrow spaces such as doors that are a quarter open, (BUT she will push open the bathroom door to come visit, and she will open the bedroom door to go wake up mom.) Doors that I hold open for her have to be open pretty wide or she won't go through it. One case in point, Waffle knocked down a baby gate and it partially blocked the bathroom door, and Truffie was very reluctant to walk past it into the bathroom, she was ok walking past it down the hallway, just not the small space into the bathroom (to which she has felt free to push her way into for a looksee since she was just a pup)

Truffie perspective
Just give you an idea of how wide the space was

She wasn't afarid to walk down the hall past the gate just into the bathroom
This morning when the gate fell she was startled but was ok walking past it down the hall, but reluctant to come into the bathroom. I called her and encouranged her and she did eventually come in and we did the happy dance and after that she was ok with coming in and out past the gate. But should I be doing that? I mean she wouldn't take her blind person through a space that big. Am I quashing her intellegent disobedience by having her walk through that space? I have noticed though with my office door she will charge through it or if it is not open wide enough for her taste and or she will heistate until I go through first.

I am just worried about her refusing commands, if we work on going in and out she is ok, but I notice a new door, small space and she still is reluctant. I also have been trying to keep better tabs on times when she is reluctant to go some place - like walking through a dark puddle at night or if I don't open the car door wide enough just so I can categorize what fear she has. It really is only noticeable to me, because I'm with her so much, it is just a slight hesitation or a quick booty scoot through the door. When I take her to meetings of course she won't do it, and my leader thinks I'm crazy ( I once had my leader come out to my car to show her how one of the pups was reluctant to get out of the car, and the bugger jumped out right as the door opened DOH!)

So blogger training friends what should I do?


Mango said...

You're talking to the wrong doggie. I see force fields and bogums all over the place and can not get through or around things that momma says I should be able to. Now PeeWee is a fool who will jump first and ask questions later. Who can tell?

Anyway, as far as training goes, momma usually ignores me even when I howl and cry and get pathetic and eventually I figure it out (but sometimes not and then she can't stand it and helps me by removing the monster)


Raiser Erin said...

I think it's great that you're trying to make sure she's confortable doing anything. She should be and I don't think she should be doing the intelligent disobedience seeing as her going through a small space isn't dangerous. But I think it's good for her later on in her career because she already knows that she can't take a person through that narrow of a space. :) But I would still make sure she's comfortable with it.

Jake and Joanna said...

I don't think you know me, I used to be a puppy raiser for GDA then I became a trainer for GDA, then I moved across the country, haha. Anyway, I just had to comment on this because there was a dog who I was training at GDA who had to be dropped because she had a fear of walking through tight spaces. However, she had a reason that she was afraid of them, and she couldn't get over the incident. What you described Truffle doing (the whole tucking the butt at the end, or rushing through it) was exactly what this dog would do.

I would suggest helping her out with this. Of course, she is in training for a different guide dog school and I don't want to step on their toes. However, in my experience, issues like this usually get worse. So why not fix it when she's still relatively young? Good luck!