Thursday, June 6, 2013

Turbo Unleashed

Yesterday morning I let Turbo off-leash for awhile..

I drove to a section of the Erie Canal nearby.. this part of the canal doesn't get much foot traffic at all. If you're lucky you'll see 1 person jogging along or something. In fact, we were lucky enough not to see anyone during our walk, which is exactly what I was hoping for this time!

Once we got on the trail, I just let go of Turbo's leash and let him drag it along.

I brought some cheese.. a special treat for Turbo as mostly he just gets typical doggy treats..
At first, whenever he'd get a few feet away from me I'd recall him and give him the cheese.. just to let him know that he'd get cheese whenever he came back to me. Then I used it less and less, and only when he got more than a few yards away.

Mostly he was great. We walked a mile down the trail. On the way down the only time I had to recall him was when he'd stop to sniff something and I got too far ahead of him.

At one point I saw 3 bunnies along the side of the trail. Turbo didn't see them right away because he was busy sniffing. I made a few loud noises to try to scare them off before Turbo saw them, but they didn't budge. As we got closer they did start finally hopping away, and Turbo saw one. He didn't immediately chase after it.. he just paused and stood still for a minute. As soon as I saw that he saw the bunny, I recalled him and he immediately came back to me. That was my proudest moment of the day!

The way back was trickier. He didn't stop to sniff much.. he'd already sniffed it all.. so he did a lot of running and would get ahead of me pretty quickly. It also got a little tougher to recall him. He'd stop and look at me, but he'd hesitate, and once or twice he'd choose not to come back and would keep on going instead. We were walking for almost a full hour.. so he was probably just getting bored of the recall game and the cheese and was more interested in running and playing. Maybe next time I'll bring 2 kind of treats.. like cheese and ham and switch it up so he knows he's getting something good but doesn't know which it will be.. that might keep him more interested.

Also on the way back he explored a lot more. He'd go into the woods a little bit.. just a couple of feet and sniff around. I'd recall him so he didn't go further.

I think he really loved it!

(also posted on Bubblews:

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