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July 21, 2015

My Rocketship Puppy

Attach a dog leash to a NASA shuttle launch and you have a pretty good idea of what it’s like leashing up Penny. Learning to channel and focus her boundless energy is undoubtedly our most challenging training goal. That’s why I love the opportunity our agility class provides to do
Attach a dog leash to a NASA shuttle launch and you have a pretty good idea of what it’s like leashing up Penny. Learning to channel and focus her boundless energy is undoubtedly our most challenging training goal. That’s why I love the opportunity our agility class provides to do exactly that. The first rule of agility is to bring your pup to class “hungry and eager.” Penny’s never had an issue with either of those qualifications.

She’s always hungry and on the prowl for another treat

And she’s so eager to run the course that she wants to cut the line

Sometimes it feels like I’m holding on to the back bumper of a car that’s driving away

Rocketship Penny is fearless and confident so she’s happy to run on any obstacle

But as I mentioned, keeping her focused and on task is the real challenge

While running the A-frame for example, Penny just completely sprinted by it because I hadn’t focused her on the task

Dee, our trainer, calls Penny a “three-hand dog” because how many hands you need to keep my nutty pup on track. Some days Penny feels more like a “ten-hand dog”

With Dee’s help and plenty of practice we’re making some really great progress in keeping Rocketship Penny on course

Penny is one of the most energetic dogs from one of the most energetic breeds at the most energetic age. I feel like if I can learn to handle this pup I can handle anything!

One of the interesting parts of class is seeing the different training challenges of classmates. Some pups need confidence, others need focus and one pup in particular needs to learn how to use her brakes every once in a while…

With that in mind, what is (or was) the toughest part about training your own pup?

Comments for My Rocketship Puppy

  1. OhMelvin says:

    I love her! And I’m always hungry too!

  2. Emmadog says:

    Yep, another thing in common with Bailie. Like Penny, she is awesome at what she does…when she has her focus. Getting her to stay on task is a big task!

  3. Shouldn’t her nickname be Propeller Penny?? Energizer Penny??

  4. raisingdaisy says:

    I love Penny’s escapades. She’s a learner, though…but I think she’s teaching you some things too! 😉 The hardest thing we’ve had to train Daisy with is getting her to stop the whole reactive leash thing. It’s working, but slowly.

  5. wow that was cool how Penny managed that a-line with you and the trainer. Easy is a multiple hand dog too, I sometimes wish I would be Visnu with more than only two hands… Our challenge are the dog shows, Easy always thinks it’s a harness racing and mark is the cart he has to pull through the ring. btw: I saw you use a leather leash, is there a trick to make it more soft&smooth for the hand? ours is a little stiff and it sometimes slips away, when the pershing on 4 legs starts. or have we just to wait till the age and the using makes it a little softer?

  6. Jeff says:

    Heel training. Stryder and I haven’t figured that one out yet.

  7. Sam is a total ADD dog. One moment, it’s “ooh, a stroller,” and the next it’s “Hey, a butterfly!” Then it’s ahhhh, a shiny object!” I feel for you with keeping Penny focused-for us it’s a 24/7 endeavor. Hard to believe he does as well as he does with patients. 😉

  8. The biggest challenge is when our Storm says. Ya know what? i think im don with this walk and just stays put….And in these moments the treats are gone… I can stand there for 20 min…hoping for another dog to come by… cos then its all about wanna play?

  9. Penny is just preparing you for a toddler human daughter. As for me, I’m still not trained so I think my Mom would say EVERYTHING has been hardest about training me. *Ear licks* Noodle

  10. Donna says:

    Boy, can I relate. I have had Axel 15 months now. He still thinks pulling on the leash is the best thing ever! Even when he is wheezing from the pressure. It scares me to death so its stop and go 15 feet…stop say no no…go 15 more feet.
    And potty time is a nightmare. He has attention deficit disorder big time. Somebody closes a door….oh oh what was that. Butterfly flies by….look look I wanna eat it….car honks a horn….woohooo turns Axel on. Then there are the times he feels so dang good….he starts running as fast as he can round and round, with the occasional figure eight thrown in….WHILE attached to the leash! He is super hyper, full of dynamite energy, and always wants to play play play. An hour walk does nothing to burn that energy!
    2 months ago, I started fostering a 9 month old little half golden retriever half German Shepard girl for a rescue. I figured it would give Axel somebody to play with and get socialization too. 30 seconds after meeting, they were wrestling and running all over the house. That night at bedtime, she slept with her head on his back. I had to take her to a vet checkup 2 weeks into the fostering. As I am trying to get her in the car, she is pulling back to the house, would not get in the car, and Axel is in the house hollering like somebody was cutting his legs off.
    That afternoon I paid the $195.00 adoption fee and named her Ariel. Oh well! 🙂
    Axel is not nearly as needy and demanding anymore. He is no longer bored as he has a baby sister to play with all day every day!

  11. Debbie Schmidt says:

    I am positive I have Penny’s twin brother.  Rusty , six months old and I am not sure I will survive to see this little RR reach 7 months.

  12. That rocketship of yours is always ready to fly………I know she’s having a blast at the class though even if the learning curve is a little “longer” than you might like! HAHAHA


  13. T&S says:

    Love it 🙂

  14. it’s a learning experience for both of you and one day it will click and you guys will fly through it with no problems. I think it is so great you are doing this with her.

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