Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Fun Day Trip-Part 3

On Friday we went to the Follow the Instructor event. (Which would be more accurate if it was called chase the trainer or sprint after the trainer) Those dogs move fast! In the morning we dropped the dogs off at campus and since the kennels in the puppy raising department were full our pups got to go into the training kennels. They had much more room in them so I was okay with that. Then we headed to the park to meet the trainers. We got to follow three dogs in the different levels of training. The first was in phase 1 the second in phase 4 or 5 and the third was class ready. It was amazing to see what the dogs do in the different phases and how they are trained.

The first dog we chased was a female yellow lab named Puebla. This was her first workout and she did a great job and caught onto things really quickly. By the end she was stopping at curbs all by herself. The trainer used a clicker and a lot of food during her route and Puebla loved it.

[Puebla stopped at a curb looking up at her trainer after getting kibble for a job well done.]

In the beginning phase they use a soft handle to get used to the feel and pull of the harness. Puebla's handle was made out of a purple rope.

[Puebla crossing a street while her trainer holds onto the soft handle.] [Puebla getting praise from her trainer for stopping at the curb.] The second dog we chased was a big male black lab named Roscoe. He is halfway through the training and is starting to take on more responsibility. He was so fun to watch and totally loved his job. He held his head up and wagged his tail the whole time. He had to rework a few turns but other than that he was great! The trainer didn't use the clicker for him anymore but he diffinitely loved getting kibble for his good work.

[Roscoe getting praise and the beginning of the route.] The last dog we watched was another large male black lab named Connor. He is class ready and should be placed with his partner soon. He was so fun to watch and was basically flawless. He even did a traffic check while we followed him. Him and his trainer were crossing the street when a van cut them off. He stopped and backed up to get him and his partner to a safe place. It was amazing to watch.

[Connor gets kibble for stopping at a curb.] [Connor and his partner after walking across the street.] I really enjoyed follow the trainer and learned so much from it. The dogs were fantastic!

After that we went to go pick up our puppies. We asked one of the employees if we could use the play yard on campus since our pups were kenneled for several hours. She let us go over and the puppies had a grand time running around for a while.

[Kyle playing with a big plastic egg. He was hilarious pushing it around and pawing at it.] [He liked this holey ball as well and would race around while carrying it.][Four way tug. Rafferty, Kyle, Janetta and Elvis all share a tug toy.]

We left campus and headed off to the beach. The dogs had a great time running around in the water. Kyle was so funny because he would race around me in circles.

[Kyle running through the water]

[The dogs down the beach. Kyle, then Elvis and Rafferty all running down the beach.] Kyle running toward me while a wave washes out.] [Kyle takes a break and collapsed in the sand] [I love this one. Kyle is running in the water but has his back end in the air and twisted around.] After the beach we went to Mier Woods. I hear guide dog graduates talk about it all the time because they do training walks there while they are in class with their dogs so we all wanted to check it out. It was amazing and the trees were gorgeous. Its a redwood forest with a trail we can walk on. It was so fun and the dogs were exhausted afterward but it was fun to experience what the class dogs do. ;)

[The boys sitting in front of a huge tree trunk. Elvis, Rafferty and Kyle]
[After we got all the dogs posed. Elvis, Rafferty, Kyle and Janetta.]
After this picture we turned around and noticed there were about 20 people behind us taking pictures of the dogs as well. Kinda awkward but we all laughed it off.
We took a short break and Kyle collapsed on a stair. It was so cute I had to get a picture.
[Kyle sitting in front of a huge hollow log.]
We were almost to the end of the walk and Kyle fell asleep against my leg. It was so cute how he had his paws wrapped around his nose.
The dogs had a very long and tiring day and were so happy to get back to the hotel and sleep until the next day.


Alphini's Puppy Raiser said...

That's so neat to get to watch the dogs at different training levels -- cool! Fun pics of pups playing too. :)

GDB Puppy Sitter :) said...

Do they only do the follow the instructor at the CA campus? Was that new this year? It looks like such a fun time! :)

Raiser Erin said...

I know Connor's Raiser. So cool. Did you get to follow Melony Harris? She's the daughter of the leader of the other club in town here and I liked talking to her when we went on the ferry ride about how it was going from puppy raiser to trainer.

Megan, Picassa & Paris said...

That's sweet Erin, you can tell them that he is happy, does a great job and looks amazing!! Yes, we followed Melanie. We asked her the same question about going from raiser to trainer. She is awesome!

Heather and Ellie said...

That must be amazing watching the dogs being trained! I would love to see that.

Lauren and Don said...

Look like a really fun time was had by both raisers and pups! They must've been so tired after playtime, the beach, and Muir Woods! I love that picture of them all sitting in front of the tree- haha! that's so funny how other people were taking pictures of them :)