Today Hestia was very good! We did three things, which is a lot for us. First, we met Kristi and her dog Jax for a Manners Evaluation. Then we went to Home Depot. And finally we ended up at Earth Fare.
In the last few months, Hestia has been more dog-distractible than usual. My friend Linden helped me brainstorm a new behavior to have Hestia do instead of her wanting to go say hi to the other dog. It is a behavior Hestia LOVES doing– spinning in a left circle, which to her is “loop”.
We arrived at TJ Maxx and stood outside waiting for Kristi with Jax. When we saw them, I had Hestia do a series of loops. It seemed to help her focus more than just looking at me does! I was very happy about that! For the rest of the evaluation, so long as I remembered to give the loop command, it worked out nicely.
While we were outside doing the first part of the evaluation, someone driving by slowed down and stopped next to us. I expected them to ask about the dogs, but instead it turns out they wanted to compliment me on my guinea pig leggings!!!
Kristi and Jax were very nice. Turns out it had been a while since Jax had been somewhere, so he was a little nervous to start with. But after a while he warmed up, which was good to see. He did a GREAT job ignoring Hestia. Hestia did a pretty good job looping when I asked her to when she started to get distracted by Jax he he he. Another thing Jax did wonderfully on was the supervised separation– he was so relaxed in his down stay, and totally sure that Kristi was coming back for him.
Near the end of the test it was time for the friendly stranger part of the test. We were discussing who to approach to ask to pet Jax, and a lady walking by overheard us and volunteered! She was very happy to pet Jax, and Jax was happy to interact with her too. Jax passed his Manners Evaluation!
Afterwards, we headed to Home Depot for Brad to buy a few things on his list, and then to Earth Fare to get cranberries and a few other things. Hestia was perfect in these two stores. We worked in the stores a lot on looping and on leaving treats that I dropped on the floor. Several people remarked on how perfectly behaved Hestia was, it was really nice.
But whew, three things in one day is a lot! I am glad to be home and relaxing!
Pictures are below. I am wearing purple guinea pig leggings with a grey top. Hestia is a small white and black Japanese Chin with a smushed nose, and she is wearing a purple vest. Kristi is wearing a black outfit with bright blue shoes and orange laces. Jax is a large black Lab and Dane mix and he has on a black vest with blue and red embroidery. And Brad is a bearded man in a wheelchair wearing a grey coat, a green blazer, a forest themed tie, and a red plaid hat.