Monday, 18 February 2008

dogs practising agility on human equipment

Penny I were walking along the river at Warburton recently and she led us onto the swinging bridge that spans the river Yarra. She was stepping it out enthusiastically, tail high, until the bridge responded to our footsteps by vibrating and the wires in the handrails began to jangle and clank.

When her tail went between her legs I thought she would freeze but she carefully made her way across to the other side.
I was going to leave it at that until I remembered reading a post on Amber-Mae's blog about the value of practising general agility on any available equipment.

So I encouraged her back and forth across the bridge a dozen times, providing lots of delicious treats (venison liver from New Zealand), in the hope that next time we go across she will make a pleasant association with weirdly swaying planks underfoot and mysterious metallic noises above her head.

Once we were on solid ground again her tail returned to its usual jaunty position as she enjoyed playing with her two rubber balls in the shadow of the young (but already gigantic) redwoods along the river.


Amber-Mae said...

Oh Penny, that's a biiiiiiig & looooooooong bridge! I've not crossed that kind of bridge before but I'm sure it's quite scawie when it shakes & sways. You will conquer your fear soon, no worries!

Love licks,
Solid Gold Dancer

parlance said...

Amber-Mae, we might go back across it tomorrow if it's not too hot, so we'll see whether the treats have worked to make Penny feel more confident. I'm glad you posted that time about going on all sorts of equipment, otherwise I wouldn't have realised what a good idea it is.