I am SOOOO excited that she is finally retrieving and OUTING without a struggle that I could dance!!
It's been a long road. Birdie didn't have a very high ball drive when we got her. She wouldn't retrieve a ball for me. She was quite content to chase Petey who was retrieving with a toy in her mouth.
I tried and tried, but she wasn't interested. Then the Gremlin got her interested in chasing cars down the hallway over the winter, but Birdie would steal them and try to chew on them. So instead of punishing her, I would call her to me and trade the car or toy for a treat.
This was infuriating Mark because it's been a game almost. Birdie steals a toy and if she brings it to me when I call her, I trade her for a treat. She won't drop it on command, she bolts under the bed.
So yesturday, I almost fell over when she was playing ball with the Gremlin. She chased the ball, picked it up and dropped it for Gremlin to throw again! I called her to me, told her OUT and traded the ball for a treat. Repeated this until I had to leave for work and did it again when I got home.
Tonight, the Gremlin left her tea party on the floor in the living room. So Birdie picked up a piece and went to chew on it. I called her to me and traded the treat for the toy. Then told her "Get it" and pointed at the toys. She started retrieving the toys one by one and bringing them to me.
I purposely dropped some of the toys when she handed them to me and told her to "get it" and she did!!
Something clicked in her doggie brain and I couldn't be happier.
All the toys Birdie fetched.
Dog spit with treat particles and my hair as proof. (Why does she always end up with my hair in her mouth?)
I am just so so happy with her right now! I gave her an entire cracker barrel chedder stick as a super good dog treat and she's doing her doggie purr noise on the couch.
Moral courage is the most valuable and usually the most absent characteristic in men ~ General George S. Patton, Jr.
She taking all the stars down from her sky to hang them up someplace new, where there's better weather and the sky's a different blue. ~ Autumn Fields