Tuesday, October 19, 2010

More BAT

Vanya did well with his weekly BAT practice with Cynthia and Dottie. He was a bit overexcited when we arrived (because I nearly smashed headlong into a truck, trying to get there on time.) So he vocalized a bit more than I might like, but that's fine.

If I tried to keep him completely calm and below threshold, I'd never take him off the farm. He's a vocal dog: our swiss-mountain yodeling pit bull. He whines and shrieks and yips with joy when he sees his friends, and now when he sees Dottie, he play bows and whines and wags his tail very hard. Too bad that she's not the right dog for him to meet--he needs to meet a bombproof dog who can ignore his goofiness. But, by now, thanks to BAT and peanut butter and repetition, I think he's fallen in love with Dottie. I feel awfully cruel keeping him at a distance from her. But it's good for him to learn that he can't run up and say hi to every dog (or any dog, alas).

I wish I knew someone up here with a calm, playful, lab who likes to wrestle and roughhouse.

At least Tiva will play with him a little each day. They're actually playing very nicely (if briefly) together most days. He bows and bounces and whirls around, and she bows and wrestles in her ancient, slightly stiff, 15 year old ladylike way. He's usually very careful not to push her too hard or to whack her when he whirls his hips around.

I laughed when I read the description of the old bull terrier in INCREDIBLE JOURNEY. Sounds just like Tiva.

Last night, my uncle (who is terrified of most dogs) mentioned that Vanya had calmed down remarkably since last time he'd seen him.


  1. I think Vanya is making lots of progress too. I'm so glad we're able to work together, it makes a big difference for both my dogs. Gustav started on prozac this week, so I'm curious to see how it works out. I'll bring him this week. He's had a rough week with several bark/lunges per walk and seems very tense when outside. Dottie, on the other hand, has been really good-maybe the BAT practice?

    And if you ever find that bomb-proof dog, let me know! :)

  2. Thanks, Cynthia! The log I kept when I put Vanya on prozac may be helpful for you and Gustaf (Gustaf's triggers are probably quite different than Vanya's, but the principle is similar): https://sites.google.com/site/thevanyaproject/training-logs/vanya-up-north