Puppy class start

On Monday we had our first puppy class! It is at an outdoor pavilion which is basically a small basketball court with a roof over it, but open on the sides to the elements.

Little Alice looks into the camera while people mill about behind her.

Overall I’m really proud of Alice!

At first, it was a little tough getting her to focus on me. So many interesting smells and other dogs to look at and hear!

Side shot of Alice looking away from the camera at others in the class.

We started with sits and downs, and I sat on the floor with her so that it would be easier to train. I brought my Harry Potter quilt to sit on that my friend Elaine made me, and at first I sat on it alone.

Veronica sitting on the floor while Alice does a paws up on her leg.

When Alice wasn’t doing sits or downs, one of the trainers, Amy, stopped by and suggested that the floor texture (a kind of strange floor with lots of holes in it for drainage) might be uncomfortable for Alice. So I spread the blanket out for her to use, and that helped.

Alice standing on the blanket, looking into the camera.

Another trainer, Erin, came over to help with the downs and we had a good conversation about shaping and trying a relaxed down instead of a sphinx down. Alice was sitting by this point, but acted like she’d never done a down before in her life! While she talked with me about strategies, Amy offered to take Alice to pee in case that was part of the problem.

Eventually the three of us got Alice all sorted out and her mind on training! From then on, she was great in class! She did many sits and downs no problem.

Alice downs on the blanket while looking up into the camera.

We also worked on the name game, and Alice did fairly well with that, too! When the third trainer, Nelle, came over, Alice wanted to say hello first. Then after that, she did a great job with responding to her name when I called it—even with Nelle right there!

During the class, there were several puppies walking around (with their people!), and some barking. Alice did a WONDERFUL job with this. She definitely looked at the other dogs when they got close or made noise, but didn’t strain to try to see them nor make any noise. She was just mildly interested. This is perfect for me!

At the end of class we worked a little on find its, which I haven’t worked on at all with Alice, so that was great.

Class seemed to fly right by, and I was sad when it ended. We were having such a great time!

Afterward, we had a good little chat with Erin—she is really awesome!

I can’t wait until class again on Monday, I know we’ll have a great time!

Brad got a little over 40 pictures. Since class is at night, the lighting was difficult. The first picture is in color, but the rest are in black and white. In the pictures I have my brown wavy hair in a ponytail and am wearing a purple dress. Alice is a tiny sable and white Chin puppy wearing a pink plaid harness. We are sitting on a blanket that has blue and purple sky swirls with stars and brooms.

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