Orbit turned 5 months old. Last week, we received his AKC certificate in the mail containing his official name “Orbit Plus Infinity Aelhearn”. The last bit is Welsh, meaning “iron head” which is beyond fitting.
Alice has seen a big change in him in the last week with how he is leash walking. I’ve noticed he’s much more confident around the neighborhood, trotting along like he owns the place. He generally leads us across the street to the small dog run to sniff around when he’s in a walking mood.
We also have been going to a dog park in Marlton NJ that allows him to run wherever he wants. Given his “iron-headedness”, his recall isn’t so hot, so we keep a 6’ lead on him that we can stomp if he runs off to certain doom.
He finished his puppy class last Wednesday. The last two weeks were the most challenging (for both him and Alice) because it concentrated on “loose leash walking” and he sucks at that. Combine that with the fact that he isn’t much interested in food or treats and it is really hard to train him or motivate him to do what you want. While other puppies are hopping up and down trying to get the treat used to give them positive reinforcement, he just sits there and acts like they are all idiots.
He’s been going through a barky phase lately. His gigantic ears pick up sounds that no human can so we’ll be sitting around chilling and all of a sudden he’ll get up and bark like someone was stealing his buried bones from the backyard. I am fine with a bark here or there to warn us we’re about to be robbed but barking at every stray sound is something I’m not too excited about. Alice found that, as you’d expect, if you wear him out with a walk or lots of obedience training, he barely barks at all. It’s just hard to find time sometimes.
We are going to create a training plan to start systematically training certain behaviors. We’ll start with the stuff we need him to do, like not puppy-bite (or “mouth”) when we’re trying to put on his harness, or come when called every time. Then we’ll move on to him nosing the ball around the apartment and start our Trieball training.