Friday, October 16, 2009

Educating Ellie: Curbing Cat Chasing: Step 1

Ellie has no check on her very strong prey drive, so helping her to live successfully with our two older cats is probably our biggest challenge. Although I've been successful with other dog and cat introductions, I actually had not run across a dog exhibiting as strong a drive as Ellie, so I went to my favorite training site and found a great article by Joan Orr addressing just this issue.

Socks and Kafka understand that click means treat, so that piece was in place. Ellie has discovered that food rewards are pretty nifty, so I started as Joan suggested, with Ellie in her kennel and clicking and treating her and Socks (tossing treats to Socks). One thing I wasn't crazy about was the barrier issue, with Ellie in her kennel.

That problem got solved later in the day when we came home from our walk, I let Ellie off leash, and then my husband informed me that Socks was loose in the house. There was a pounce, a hiss and smack, and I caught Ellie, put on the leash and began the click-n-treat vending machine routine - madly clicking and treating both Ellie and Socks. Ellie began to look to me, and I was running out of treats, and we called it a night. Success. Now to repeat, repeat, repeat.

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