August 4

Video 17

They were only alone in the evening. They were again alone at first and then Dave came home. They were quiet when I came home.

Today I did the same thing as yesterday. I’m leaving and going out of sight even if Cassie does not have her head down. Then I watch my monitor and if she does a head down or calming signal I CT. I also begin moving towards the back door, the main door I go in and out of the house. I’m still having to do a couple trials where I leave the room but stay in sight until I get head down, click, return and treat. I then leave the room.

I’m actively working the back door now. First approaching it over the course of several trials, touching the handle, jiggling the handle, turning the knob, all while Cassie is looking and maintaining head down.

I get to the point where the door is open and I am going out of sight behind it. I also begin to engage the screen door. I actually briefly stepped outside, but she raised her head and it took too long to lower it again. So that tells me I went too fast.

I realized today, it would be beneficial if I actually said what I was doing as I did it on the video since you can’t see me. Sorry it took me so long to think of that! I’ll do more of that in future videos.

Cassie has begun “asking” me to do this training. Usually when I come home. If I spend any time in the kitchen, she goes to her mat and puts her head down in a dramatic manner when I’m looking at her! This is one of the goals as described by Roger Abrantes, PhD, in his book Dogs Home Alone. We want the dog to develop such a good feeling about that mat or crate that the dog seeks it out as a place of comfort when you are not there.

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