Thursday, September 8, 2011

Training a Dog to Generalize

It's amazing how through training you learn to communicate even though you have not formally trained an action. Bailey likes a good game of fetch with her ball. She often will go find it if you ask her too. We ask her to find it often because it distracts her from barking. Today I put out my hand and pointed to it that I wanted her to put the ball in my hand. She tried to figure out what I was talking about. Her new offered behavior is her paw. So she stuck out her paw. Well even though that wasn't what I wanted exactly she was now close enough I could get the ball out of her mouth. She never holds on to it, so she is very willing to release the ball but just doesn't understand that I want the ball in my hand. She has learned if she wants to keep playing fetch she must bring the ball close enough to me and will drop in on the floor. If I'm on the computer it often gets dropped underneath my chair.

She also did well with barking tonight. Even though the other dogs were barking she would just run to the window and bark a couple of times. I would say thank you and then she would leave the window. Sometimes I think she barks out of boredom so I try to play fetch with her frequently.

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