I can’t remember why but when Derek (that’s my pack leader) pulled out the hair brush to groom me I got scared and didn’t like it all. He’s a bit slow on all of this but a few days he came up with the idea of using the clicker to introduce the brush. When he first showed me it the clicker went off and I got a treat, wow it changed everything cos as it got closer, it clicked again and before I knew it I was loving the brush and was wondering why it made me scared. Anyway associating the bad with something good works really quickly on us puppies. It’s something to do with the Amygdala in my brain, yours too, that while you re experience your fear, for seven seconds, your Amygdala is open to other experiences to mix into the default response and change the experience and so the hair brush became the coolest ever and I don’t want him to stop brushing my chest and belly.
It then occurred to him that I was scared of the Frisbee and I remember why. We were playing tug on it and I got over excited and completely forgot about the no biting policy and nipped his hand. It felt good but half a second later when he pulled his hand away the Frisbee whacked me right on the nose. All I can say is, it was in his hand at the time and you put two and two together. Well, ever since playing with the Frisbee hasn’t been the same. To be honest I was just playing it safe by nibbling it gently and there was no way I was gonna play tug with it again no matter how much he tried to coax me with it.
So after the brush the Frisbee appeared with a click and a treat and barely four nibbles of some delicious chicken the Frisbee changed back into something I really like to chew and is the best toy to play tug with. We play it with lots of my toys but this one is so easy for me to grip I love it and he loves it when I let go so I always do when he stops and holds the toy. He gives me it right back so I have no problem with letting it go. He told his grandson that the first step in teaching a dog fetch is to teach the dog that it’s great fun to let it go. He says you have to do it backwards cos most people throw something away from a puppy and say some word and the dog, after running all that way for it is not going to give it to anyone.
Anyway he’s made tug even better cos now he throws the toy and I’m loving the chase. Sometimes I run into my bed with it but after a minute or two I figure the game is better fun with him (he does have his uses) and I bring it to him and we start again. And about half the time I bring it straight to him cos he really like it. Never heard the clicker in this game but no matter, it’s fun anyway.