Thursday, July 17, 2014

Selective Hearing & The "Treat" Counter

Barry can be the best listener. Sometimes I just take it for granted how well behaved he is. I think I dwell too much on the times he's in squirrel mode. That, of course, is no one's fault but mine. Our amazing dog trainer once told me something along the lines of, "You're flunking him before you even give him a chance to pass!" That has stayed with me. I have to remind myself of my attitude and how it affects Barry. The training was mostly for me. Husband too but mostly for me I think. Barry was just along for the ride and the treats. He already wanted to do whatever we told him, he's made ready to please.

All that to say, there are the times when Barry loses our voice. He gets in this mode that is hard to break. His attention is no longer on us. He can't hear us. It's not often. We see it fleetingly with squirrels he finds on our walks or a dog that is just too interesting to not sniff. There are also the times that he's searching intently for a squirrel or critter. He is on high alert. He barely listens. He'll sit down next to us but won't look. We have to wait for him to snap out of it. He's listening, though, that's the thing. Otherwise he wouldn't sit. He's only half listening, though. Still searching for critters.

Then there's the front desk area. Barry thinks of this place as the treat counter. The front desk guys love Barry and Barry loves them. Barry takes on their energy and he's crazy, pulling us to the desk and he jumps up to peer over the counter and get a treat. We've started making Barry sit before he can receive one of those front desk treats. For some reason those treats are the best thing he's ever eaten. I'm sure whatever it is they have isn't the sort of treats we're giving Barry. It can't be as delicious but for some reason he goes nuts over the milk bone type treat. Even though Barry has a sensitive stomach we allow him to have one in the evening because it's one of Barry's favorite things ever!

As soon as we get anywhere near the front desk Barry pulls his hardest so he can get
there fast!
Then he jumps up to the counter to see over the side. This is our doorman walking
around to make Barry sit so he can give him a treat.
Barry sitting and licking his lips.
Now that he's had his treat he's trying to go behind the desk to sniff out more!
Sometimes I'm not sure who's happier to see whom. The front desk man to see Barry or Barry to see the front desk man. Either way, Barry gets excited like a kid when we near the "treat" counter.

No comments:

Post a Comment