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Concentrating on down/stay in congenial canine company.

 

In addition to being, we feel, exceptionally pretty to look at, Cloud is also a workaholic. A week without at least one visit to the training grounds will have Cloud's long nose rather out-of-joint, and the whole of him frequently playing chase with the cat in an effort to bother the boredom. Ambitious, attentive and eager to please, he sets about his tasks.

Although many humans tend to forget that collies are working dogs, collies never do. Prewired to achieve, Cloud would probably be happiest following in the footsteps of some of his outstanding and renowned American therapy dog ancestors at Kings Valley Collies and moving blind and/or handicapped human beings here, there or elsewhere ... or busily digging people out of earthquake-torn houses, but ... but sports and obedience training and sundry competitions of that nature will simply have to serve as displacement activities, given the limits to his human family's energies. Beginning with light "work" at organized puppy groups at our local dog club, the humans of our family can now say with relative confidence that we understand what we should be doing so that Cloud does that which we want him to do. We've got the moves and the commands down now ... and he is quite pleased with us. On the whole. 

As for Cloud, the animal has shown exceptional will-to-please in all training sessions. Unfortunately, the ill health of the female version of his two-leggers kept him from participating in sports competitions this past summer and stopped his training and testing within but two short weeks of his German Companionship Certificate trial. Before the nasties set in, however, he had taken part in a preliminary trial run under test conditions and unfamiliar terrain and without his usual handler (yours truly, the female two-legger) on 13 March 2004, wherein he moved less well than is his wont, but still well enough to achieve 47 out of a possible 60 points -- comfortably above the 42 points minimum requirement to pass!

Obedience training quite simply rocks. Not only is it fun when your dog gets a certificate, it also makes life out in the real world comfortable and welcoming and much less of a hassle.

An off-leash dog "who" responds to the heel command to then move perfectly in sync at your side in public will not frighten either joggers or bikers or wary mothers with toddlers, will be a welcome guest even in shops and restaurants (Yes, my fellow Americans, such is accepted in Germany ... but only if your dog is well-mannered.) and will be the recipient of much by way of praise and admiration -- which can but aid his bonding with the human species in general.

 

......... Heel with a change of direction. ......... .

 

Heel and down/stay with lady in motion. .

 

Cloud responding to "come".

 

 

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