Sunday, February 21, 2010

Going to Town

Today we went to the village. How exciting! Well, for Vanya it is. We got to practice: walking calmly past the yellow lab in his kennel, greeting the lab, coming away from the lab, greeting two people (the lab's owners) and trying hard to sit politely while they scratched his ears, looking at other people and not screaming when denied the chance to greet them, walking calmly through the main street of town and ignoring the decrepit souls going into bars at midday on Sunday.

He did much better at all these activities. He was able to keep a loose leash and unfurrowed brow while we approached the kenneled dog, and he wasn't particularly interested in greeting that dog (Jake, by the way).  We passed by the lab 5 times, and each time he was able to glance at the lab and then focus on other things. He did try to jump up on the nice lady (Peggy) who petted him (and who owns Jake) and he did begin to yodel when the worker across the alley didn't have time to say hi to him. And he was pretty intense on the village streets, stressed, but not vocalizing at people (having trouble watching me, however, when cued to do so. Bribes helped). Overall, he did much, much better than he has in the past. Even though he wasn't very relaxed about town yet, at least he didn't go over threshold at all. I tried hard to capture and mark and reward his moment of relaxation and calmness. Now he is very tired. Me too!


  1. Sounds like success! Vanya's come a long, long way.


  2. Thank you for your blog, Nancy. You've inspired me to blog about Amber's progress as well. (Assuming Amber and I make progress)