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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

The Joy of Training

Today, I want to share a brief video of me and Shyla training before our huge snowstorm. The main thing that I love about the video is not Shyla's skills - it's her utter joy in playing and engaging with me. That's what I want more than anything, especially knowing where we started.

For new readers, I met Shyla more than 3 years ago when she was 9 months old. She was very fearful of almost everything, and she was apathetic in her interactions with me. She was the first Lab who I'd ever met who seemed so fragile and scared.

With the help of several people far more knowledgeable than I am, Shyla has come a long way. She's now rarely afraid in our home environment - which includes the area where we live and almost anywhere rural. Anyplace that "bustles", like a town or a crowded event, can still scare her to the point that she is not happy.

I adore the time we spend training together. We do nosework training, and, in addition, I've been focusing on our play interactions through a course we've been taking in the past few weeks. When I watched this video after our training session, I knew that Shyla loves our time together too!

I hope that this short video, taken in a place that was new to Shyla, makes you smile! You can watch here or at Youtube.

I feel that the time that I spend playing with Shyla improves her behavior in every aspect of our lives. Here she is recalling to me off moose tracks today. The same moose as yesterday had made a big circle, leaving fresh tracks on our path this morning.
Both of us were moving more slowly in the snow today. It's hard work, and I'd love to see some real sunshine that would start to melt the snow. Instead, it's snowing again. With all this moisture, we're going to have a brilliant wildflower season!

And, on the surgery recovery front, R seems less unhappy today and is weighting his bad leg a little bit more, which is a good sign!


  1. It is so easy to tell how much fun Shyla is having!!! A good reminder for us to keep up the fun training time with Ciara and Lightning. We are so happy to hear that R had a better day!!!

  2. I just love the smiles on both your faces!! I can literally see the love :-)

  3. I think it is so good to have that bond and the training is so fun for both of you!!

  4. Oh Shyla, it's such a joy to see your bouncy happy self! Hooray R, keep improving handsome one.

  5. I loved the video but I am prejudiced because I love everything with Shyla in it.

  6. You've both come so far! So glad R is feeling better. :)

  7. We love,, love,, love the video!
    We love seeing happy Shyla!
    And were glad R is not so unhappy today

  8. So glad R is happier, and lovely training, I like your boots!!, hearing your voice, and that soft accent. Shyla, a dream come true for you both after a shaky start with a fragile girl.

  9. I love the video, and the news about R!

  10. Shyla looks so happy in her video! It looks like she's having a great time! I'm glad to hear that R isn't so miserable today! Poor guy!

  11. I love watching you and your mom train, Shyla, and you have us smiling. Thank you for that☺ Keep improving daily, R!

    Love ya lots♥

  12. Great video - what a good bond you have with her - she is laser focused. Glad to hear about R.

  13. Shyla you are a super special dog and your mommas soulmate, I bet. hugs to R I hope it will be a little better efurry day... step by step.

  14. loved the video!!! Hope each day finds a happier R
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

  15. You obviously like to learn Shyla. Good job R
    Lily & Edward

  16. That sure looks like fun. Good girl, Shyla.

    Hope R is feeling better today than yesterday - and better tomorrow - until he heals from the surgery.

  17. Good job Shyla! When mom wants me to back up she says "Moonwalk".

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  18. We just love seeing YOU and Shyla! We can tell she enjoys her training...and YES, we did smile!!

  19. I just love seeing the two of you in action! What a happy, bonded team!

  20. Fun to see a little bit of the gal behind the camera!

  21. Thankyou! It's good to see that when other people do training, it looks pretty much like when I do it! I don't see people training in real life so it's good to know :)


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