Based on some feedback received at our last training class, we have been working on HEEL, again. Monte is enjoying his retraining. Going back to square one involves luring him to remain at our side and continuously rewarding him with praise and treats. He ends up eating half his nightly ration on our evening walk before dinner begins.
When not HEELing, the rest of the week has been filled with new experiences that thoroughly tested Monte's patience. After his day at the hair salon, he spent ninety minutes waiting at the car dealer, an hour discussing assisted living, and a two hour "fancy" dinner.
His behavior was exemplary with the exception of when it started raining chips and guacamole at the restaurant. He had an intense focus on the food that was being provided by our one year old dinner companion. Following a little advice and gentle corrections, he resigned himself to the fact that he would have to wait for his dinner, at home.
Saturday brought warmer temperatures and more practice HEEling. The first relatively nice weekend of the spring yard work which is a great opportunity to see how Monte would react to being left indoors, alone and uncrated. He quietly watched us work, until it was time for a little Rest & Relaxation. More HEELing to the park and then thirty minutes running around to let of some steam
Today's final challenge was our puppy's first visit to church and a first communion celebration to boot. Once seated in the pew we prayed for good behavior and no outbursts, while Monte focused on the plethora of distractions. Our prayers were answered; the children proved no match as Monte remained quiet, but one young neighbor was continuously saying "puppy", "puppy", "puppy".