A.J.’s First Private Lesson

August 16, 2013

We had another lesson in getting up too early in the morning today. Greg got up just before 6:30 to let A.J. out. A.J. came back in and was wide awake. I petted him for a little bit, but he got right up again. A few minutes later he was at the door again asking to go out. I decided he was going out and staying out while I got some more sleep. Unfortunately I think he knew this, because when I opened the door he wouldn’t go out. So I tried again to settle him down, but it didn’t really work. He finally started crying. Greg started to get up, but I told him I didn’t want A.J. to be rewarded for crying. If he was crying to wake us up because he had to go out that would be fine, but he was whining because he was bored and wanted me to get up and play with him and feed him. So I told him to stop whining, and he finally went over and started chewing on his toy. That’s when I got up and told him what a good boy he was. I’m trying to reinforce constructively entertaining himself until I get up.

Today was A.J.’s first day of school. Our trainer, Mary, seems very nice and I like her training style. We started with some exercise. The first thing she wanted to see was eye contact. I had to hold treats in my hand, and as soon as A.J. looked at me he could have one. I told her “No problem, he looks at me all the time.” Well, all he would do was stare at my hands where he knew I had treats. That one didn’t go well. But he did better on some of the other exercises. She remarked on how handsome he is, and how quickly he was picking things up. I think he did great. But we never got to work on walking past dogs, we’re pretty far away from that one.

We practiced the training tonight, and he did great. But every time it looked like he was getting the eye contact thing, he’d start staring at my hands again. It happened most when I switched hands. Interesting.