Leaps and Bounds with Luna

This month's positive training blog hop is directed at what brought us to use the positive training method. I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to give you an update on Luna as it ties in nicely with why I use positive training with the poodles. Thank you to Rubicon Days for inviting me to join the hop!

Luna has been with the family for two full months now. From day one it was evident that it would take some time to allow her the freedom to roam our yard off-leash. For starters, we have a large area that the poodles have full access to, so a certain level of trust is required as I can't always watch them at all times. Secondly, the chicken yard neighbors this area and Luna proved to be a keen enthusiast of poultry!

The three poodles enjoying the sun together.

Over the last two months we've slowly worked on being around the chicken yard without being obsessed with the chickens. Every time Luna gives me attention over the chickens, she receives high praise. No longer does she obsessively pace at their fence line and if she does go over to say hello, she comes back when I call her. Success!


During this same time, she's been weaned off the leash. She still goes out for morning and evening potty breaks on leash because it's dark out and the bunnies and deer are often out too. I don't fancy starting my day chasing a poodle, who's chasing a rabbit, through the forest in my bath robe. But we'll work on that level of trust too, and I'm sure we'll get there eventually.


I let the poodles outside and when I came back to check on them, this is what I found. Relaxing in the sun!

During daylight hours, however, she is allowed out (leash-free) to run and play and sunbathe with Teddy and D'Art. It feels so rewarding when I call her and she joyfully comes inside with everyone else.

Is she perfect and trustworthy 100% of the time? Nope! Do we still have work to do? Absolutely! Luna is a living, thinking being and her personality will always shine through. That's what makes her, her, and that's one of the reasons I love her.
 
Teddy and Luna just came in from a fun play session outside.

My journey to positive training has largely been the learn-as-you go method. I've made mistakes along the way, and I'm sure I still will. Thankfully dogs are the most forgiving of all species on this earth and we can always brush ourselves off and try again. Each of the three poodles have very different personalities, but positive training always proves successful with each of them, despite their differences. A combination of treats, praise and patience works wonders.  

Luna is a perfect example of how a timid, chicken-crazed poodle can go from life in an overcrowded shelter to a happy and well-adjusted life with a family (living harmoniously with chickens no-less) over the course of a mere two months!

What is your experience with positive training?


Comments

  1. The progress you've made with Luna in such a short time is impressive! It is encouraging to hear how positive training works with many different personalities of dogs. It's also good to hear that they can learn to live peacefully with chickens nearby. We plan to get some of our own next spring, and I have a feeling Luke will need some work to get used to them!

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  2. I am in awe of the progress you have made, this is all just the most fantastic news!!!!! DakotasDen

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  3. I am so impressed with you and your dogs. Luna is an angel and I can't wait to get our walks started again! These training posts are so inspiring and I'm learning a lot from you.

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  4. What wonderful progress! I'm glad that Luna is earning more freedom!

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  5. It's wonderful that Luna is gaining more freedom and becoming better off-leash! Mr. N has pretty good recall but he's never seen deer before... Thanks for joining the hop!

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  6. Considering the addition in the last couple of days, I'd better take note of your success, I will definitely need to implement pawsitive training methods and should read up on it to make it especially effective. Good for you and good for Luna-well done! ღ

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  7. Luna is a beauty. She learns from the other two as well as wanting to please you. Sometimes I'm sorry we didn't get a pup for Cole to train...

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