The dogs are disgusted with the rain, but I am thankful it is wet and not white. I do hope the white stuff forecasted for this weekend does not amount to more than a flake or two.
I have been working on reliable recall for Charley and Sadie, and keeping the deaf dogs, Belle and Oliver, close to me in preparation for our move later this spring. One advantage of a pasture all to oneself is that I never have to worry about them disappearing from sight or unexpectedly encountering strange humans and dogs. Charley and Sadie HAD reliable recall, but have lately decided selective hearing is waaaay more fun. So, back to the training tools of frequent recalls, treats, and sometimes the longline.
The biggest challenge is for me to remember to take the treats along. For three mornings and evenings I remembered, and the dogs were exceptionally quick to catch on. The little ones kept one eye on me at all times, and by day three the big ones came the instant I whistled or whispered (in my hoarse, laryngitic voice) their names. Unfortunately, this morning I forgot the treat bag. Well! The looks of reproach!!!
Mama, where's the treat????
Belle and Oliver stayed right on my heels, eyes glued to the pocket where the treats SHOULD have been. Charley and Sadie came the first couple of times I called them, accepted praise and pats, tried every trick in the book for a treat (sit, lie down, shake a paw, look cute with head tilt, speak, and when all else fails try to trip Mama by weaving back and forth in front of her) and then gave up and decided to ignore me for the next several recalls. Of course, I had also forgotten the longline, so going to retrieve them and harness them was not in the works either. Training is not my forte.
Huh? What? I don't hear anyone calling my name!
I am still without much use of my voice, relegated to talking in a hoarse whisper and coughing violently if I try to exceed that. I fear I may have “blown” my vocal cords, though I hope it is just a lingering infection. Filling class time with videos cannot substitute indefinitely for the lecturing I should be doing in my three 3-hour classes, so it’s back to the doctor today.
Unlike the K-12 system, universities don’t simply call in a replacement from a “substitute professor” list. The past four weeks have been a combination of midterm break, midterm exams, class cancellations and videos, so it really is time to either resume lectures or get medical documentation for short term disability leave so a sessional replacement can be arranged. Since I am not good at being silent, I hope a change of medication will resolve my voiceless state!