Last night after spending some time creating and providing our ducklings with some enrichment toys (after finding them trying to get the tape off the side of their brooder, I decided maybe they were bored and needed some new safe toys), I started to feel a bit guilty that Tom and Zora hadn’t had any fun learning nonsense time lately. So, we had some. And it was silly and fun.
Always fun to see what 1/2 a cup of kibble for rewards, 10-15 minutes and a couple of every day objects can create for a game. Our game last night ended up becoming a game of ‘bridge.’ With Zora as the bridge. And Tom doing down stays in different places.
I put out on the floor a storage box that had been sitting on a chair in the living room, and a couch throw pillow. In the living room, Zora’s learned default behavior is a relaxed down on her dog bed. Which is where she started, she then offered front feet up on the storage box. Which I marked and rewarded. Pretty soon it became front feet on the box, back feet on her bed. Or front feet on the bed, back feet on the box. Then back feet on the box, front feet on the couch ottoman. Then box and pillow. Bed and pillow. etc.
It was such fun being a part of creativity with the dogs. And seeing Zora start to generalize the idea of to earn a treat her front and back feet had to be elevated but on different surfaces. It was a great low physical stress and energy game for me (perfect for where my pain levels were by that time of the day) since all I had to do was sit comfortably on the couch and toss kibble as earned, and a great mental exercise for the dogs. 10minutes and I had some happy, smiling and tired dogs. Great fun!
Have you had any fun nonsense training time with your dog lately?