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February 22, 2017

Eva's Hand Shakes

How Eva gets some training...

Well if you know anyting about the Louisiana State Dog, the Catahoula, you know their middle name is "crazy".  They are simply a hand-ful and anyone who wants a super docile canine from day one should not think of adopting a catahoula. Yes, there are the exceptions, but the general rule is..'we're catahoula, we're crazy".  For those who like dogs with lots of personality, well that's the breed for you.  

Eva is quite a sweet girl and she's learning the ropes from both Bonnet and Kaspar so she has every chance of becoming a great dog!  This said, she's barely a year old now so she's still  very much in the puppy mode.  For one thing she cannot get into the house fast enough.  She has to run ramshod over the dachsies, nearly trampling them, slide the kilim rug on the back porch into a neat accordion as she makes aher hairpin turn itno the kitchen - yes, that's where the biscuit tin is!  
Eva also has the ability to get all four feet off the ground at once.  And not jsut one time or two times but repeatedly.  Like Tigger from Pooh Bear stories, her legs are made of spring.  

So after a few months of watching her slip and slide from rug to rug and tear madly through the house when not leaping up and down non-stop, I decided it was time to teach her some proper manners.   Well another thing about catahouala is that htey usualy are very smart.  So they learn well and just 'get it" pretty quickly.  True to form, it took only a couple of times for Eva to get that if she was going to get fed her dinner she had to come in and sit quietly - well almost quietly - and stay still for a half-minute, then I would escort her - she leaping all the way - to her crate with her bowl of chow.  The half-minute became a full minute, and we added the word stay.  

So there was 'sit" (pointed finger" then "Stay" Flat palm facing.  Then I decided it would be fun to teach her to shake hand.  So we did.  Eva seemed to really like this one it only took one day for her to learn!  

After a week, we are at this stage:  I have fed the dachsies.  Now it's Eva's turn. I hear her slamming against the screen door and barking in protest.  "what's taking so long!  I want my chow now".  Finally I open the door and she runs in, leaps while doing a circle (yes, yes, it can be done!).  I put my finger up (sometimes I snap my finger) and she sits.  I say "Sit". in the appropriate stern voice.  Lots of modified squirming, the tail is wagging furiously and the tongue is panting out but still she IS sitting.  Let's not get picky here.  Then I add "Stay" and the palm and then I look away and cross my arms.  Little by little the tail and squirming diminish to a sit- still posture.  After a couple of minutes I uncross my arms - oh there goes the tongue! - and I say "shake hand" and the left paw goes up immediately.  

Good girl Eva.  As I said, this girl has every chance of becoming a truly great dog!