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Day 142 in 2019

Time for a puppy/training update? Gimli is now 34 pounds of pure, opinionated energy. Thankfully, he's also smart, eager to please, and generally a good boy. We still train about three times a day, usually after each meal, and do our best to take turns so he'll listen to everyone. He graduated at the top of his intermediate obedience class at Pet Smart and he's got all the basics down pat. We are comfortable enough with his recall that we can now play fetch on the 30 foot check leash in our (unfenced) backyard without incident, even if the neighbors are out (even if their DOGS are out!), and that's been a game changer on the energy release front. In addition to the basics, he now knows how to roll over, "chill" (lay on his side, specifically for nail trims), shake with both paws, spin in both directions, weave through the handlers legs, give a high five, sit pretty, go to his "place", and "touch" (nose to palm, which will be invaluable if/when we start agility and high level trick training). He can heal on the left and "come by" on the right and does so very reliably, which was my best answer to our overly social dog on walks and has become a very good first line of defense in that area. Actually, he now walks with very good manners a majority of the time (no pulling, no rushing, even when rabbits suddenly and surprisingly dart out from under bushes right in front of him). And in the picture above you can see him working on "exile", the command we've used with all of dogs to keep them out of the kitchen/dining area when we wanted. He definitely looks like he feels exiled.

So we're coming along, if we could just get the jumping under control! But I've been reassured but numerous trainers and dog people that jumping is the hardest habit to break, and usually just takes time and maturity. We'll get there.

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