Late last Friday night two special guests arrived for the weekend. That wonderful pair of pups that you see in our promo video, the German Shepherd and Lab/Boxer mix, came to our place for their boot-camp opportunity to learn to control that chicken-grabbin’ impulse.
On the day I met this pair and their owners, we worked with them for just a little bit, enough to get some pictures of them with a couple of chickens in a pen. But, as puppies go, they take more patience and time, and so by the time I left they were far from cured. And that was several weeks ago. So when they arrived at our place last Friday, I decided to do something special with them for this project.
I elected to handle this pair as though I had been asked to step in and confront the issue immediately on dogs I’d “never seen” before. I want to show that as a stranger I can step into a dog’s life, apply my method for a chicken-killing issue, and immediately correct the behavior. I want to demonstrate that this method works, without regard to other traditional training. I didn’t exercise them, I didn’t leash train them, I didn’t make sure they could sit, lie down, or stay. I didn’t coddle them in any fashion. What I did do is take them straight to the chickens to evaluate them, and, predictably, they still had a good amount of grab-shake-and-kill impulse in them. So just plain and simple: I applied my chicken-killer techniques, start to end, and have it all on video.
And then I made another decision. I’ve decided to let you see this done on both dogs with almost every bit of footage that we shot. I got started about 2:30 in the afternoon, and when I looked at the time when both dogs were at liberty in the yard with the chickens, it was 6:30. Four hours. Much of that time was spent in transitioning for the video, and a few mental and water breaks for me and the dogs. So, in actual time spent in training, about three hours. Two dogs.
When released, this overall project will be presented as a collection of various videos. I don’t have it completely scripted and planned as yet, but in theory I’ll have various videos such as “Intro,” “Safety,” then “Step 1, “Step 2,” “3″ and “4.” Those will show details, with several examples involving different dogs.
But these two pups are going to have their own feature film. It might be a bit long for some, but others will appreciate having it available. So far it looks like this one film alone is going to end up being a little over two hours long. The only segments I’m cleaning out of it is where I would stumble on my talking, the breaks, and other awkward and messy moments. Within this video you’ll find many imbedded hints and details that you might otherwise miss.
This one video will show you a real life experience of me interceding on chicken-grabbing behavior, and correcting it quickly, and easily, with no violence, tricks or gimmicks, in four easy, clear steps, that just about anyone can do. This will convince you, if anything can, that most people can easily accomplish the same, with most dogs.
I also plan a special feature on Ice’s story, so you can compare the method being applied to two relatively easy, typical dogs, to working with an extreme dog. You’ll see the steps are the same, and you’ll get insight into how you can successfully handle more extreme dogs.