Tuesday was our third day at school for Charlie and me. And I'm happy to report a full turn around for my puppy. She played nice with the other kids (most of the time) and showed off how good she was at listening. I felt like a proud mama.
This week also marks the first successes for "leave it." That is the command I use when Charlie has something she is not supposed to have. For example: Lego heads/arms/pants, socks, napkins, toilet paper, webkins, carpet remnants, and her favorite - wallpaper. It's incredible to see all my hard work come to fruition.
But I must let you in on my secret, because, until lately, she never listened. The trainer uses this secret weapon in class all the time and its amazing. The results come instantly and long-term results come within a few uses. It's a water bottle. I know, I know - it's no secret. But for some reason I had it in my head that I could do it all without the water bottle. I was wrong. It's amazing and I love it.
I had trouble getting her to "leave it" or stay "down." But not anymore. One quick spray and she does whatever I want. She has started to show she is getting it. The only hard part about the "down" command is that she usually does it on people standing a few feet away from me (like the culbert kiddies), so it's hard to aim the spray quickly and effectively. So many times I hit a kid instead of the dog. But they don't mind, especially Leia: "Spray it in my mouth."
Oh, another exciting thing happened this week - Charlie went down the stairs all by herself. She has been afraid of them for a long time, and honestly, who could blame her? Her body was barely has long as the step is tall. But after one day of repeatedly shoving her down the steps she finally did it. When Mom came home I had to show her, so once again I shoved Charlie down. Mom and I were both praising her so much that she went all the way down, came halfway back up, went down, came halfway back up, then went down again - I could see her figuring out that she could do it.
It was a proud moment for me. I know, I'm a dork - but I'm cool with that.