As well as I thought I knew my Labrador, Gina, she even surprised me recently during this recent run at an AKC agility trial. It never ceases to amaze me how much I continue to learn from my dogs. Here’s what Gina taught me in 33 seconds:
1. Don’t ever give up.
Even when you fall flat on your butt, you never know what will happen next. Get up, go on and finish.
2. Life (and dog training) is supposed to be fun.
Don’t take life too seriously. When life throws you a curve ball, have fun with it.
3. Be prepared.
We practice cues from a huge variety of positions and locations ~ the floor, on the sofa, while doing a plank. And even though I never said “over” from the floor, I never knew how much all that practice would come in handy.
4. Praise and attention keeps you going.
Gina really responded to all the cheering at the end and picked up speed. Praise feeds your soul, no matter your leg count.
5. Reward. Reward. Reward.
Everybody likes to get paid, even dogs. She was immediately rewarded for a job well done. First with the cheering, next when she jumped on me right after the run, followed by her favorite treat, and then a game of fetch with her squeaky ball reserved especially for agility.
Good girl, Gina!
What life lessons have you learned from your dogs? Thanks for sharing in a comment below.
Top Photo: Ian Coggins
Gina Jumping: Erika Mauer
Gina posing with Lisa: Karen Gough
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