I haven't had a lot to post about recently - the yard has been pretty much under water since the beginning of October, and Peepers has been up and down since The Big Incident. Boy, that's funny to write :). Anyway, I have spent time thinking about training and had an aha moment. I discovered I really am a dork. really.
As many of you know, I have been working with Peepers and Sparky on wearing a harness. I had gotten as far as having Peepers put his head through and lift his wings (briefly) for goodies. The next step in actually putting on the harness is to slide the big loop down his wings, and get it underneath each of them. I have been really concerned about this step - with the loop around his head, if and when I managed to get the loop under even one wing, any problem that Peepers might have with the harness could explode into an absolute devastating panic because I would not be able to get the harness off easily. So, I was putting off going to this next step.
Yesterday I saw a video on facebook from Premierf Pet Products. It showed Jean Donaldson teaching a chow to wear a head halter (for those of you who are interested, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1wakterNyUg). She trained the nose loop and the head collar portions of the halter separately, then combined the 2 when she wanted to get the dog actually wearing the halter.
Well, of course. I can and will be training the big loop around the wings and the small loop around the head separately. While I am training the big loop, it will be easy to slip it off down Peepers' back if he decides he wants it off, and there should be fewer problems with panicky situations this way. I really have no idea why I didn't think of this sooner. I really am a dork. really.
So today I started up with harness training again, and Peepers is a little suspicious of the big loop, so we need to work up to him hanging out while I lay it on his back etc etc. I won't be doing the head loop for a while, but I assume we will have taken a step or 2 back in that department too. Lucky thing this isn't a race LOL. Here's the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X2pNrSz7DY8