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  • Julie Muller

Dog School - moving on from Puppy Class

Updated: May 31, 2022

Shep and I normally go everywhere together, and I must confess that sometimes I pay more attention to him than I do to our humans. The problem is that he doesn’t always get things right and over the last few months I guess that I have picked up a few bad habits.

So, I was very surprised when Julie put me in the car – without Shep.

The journey was short and then I knew where I was - ‘Dog School’ and I wondered whether I would see any of my old friends.

There was already one dog in the hall- a Shih Tzu called Ralph. He seemed a bit nervous, so I gave him plenty of space and Julie and I waited for the rest of the class to arrive.

Soon, the other dogs and their humans arrived, many of which were Labradors who I had not met before. However, the last dog to turn up was a rather bouncy Labradoodle, called Pluto, who I remembered from Puppy Class.

When we were all sitting comfortably, our teacher, started the class. Ann, who works for the Malvern and District Dog Training Club, explained that this would be a ‘refresher course’ with some extra ‘bits’ added and that if we wanted to, and were good enough, we could work towards our Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme Bronze Award. (What a mouthful!) – I know that Julie will want me to have a go!!

Our first task was to show that Julie could examine me all over without me making a fuss. This is important for when Julie needs to take me to the vets. Happily, I rather like to be stroked and cuddled as long as she doesn’t try to groom me. I can get a bit carried away trying to ‘kill’ the brush. – Sadly, this is one of the things I mustn’t do if I am to get my Bronze Award – oops!

I think that Julie was amazed just how much I had remembered from Puppy School . I still knew how to sit, stand, and lie down and in the hall, I was just as good as all of the other dogs at walking on a loose lead – I find it so much harder to concentrate when I am ‘out and about’ with Shep.

One of the new things that I learned today was how to ‘roll over’ on command. Shep can do this so easily – but I get rather over-excited and use my claws to try to grab the treat which is a bit painful for whoever is holding it. I love learning new things but sometimes I am probably a bit too keen to get the treat and so I get things wrong.

Ann used me to show the rest of my class out how to train recall. She removed my lead, threw a tasty treat which naturally I ran to retrieve and then called me back to her side before repeating the exercise. Her treats were scrummy, and it was great fun. I didn’t even know that she was training me!!

Ann has sent us home with lots of things to do for next week and I am eager to improve.

I remember seeing the red Welsh sheep dog at work, rounding up sheep when we went on our walk in the Elan Valley and I want to be just as ‘clever’ as him!!

A white Shih Tsu poses for a photograph with owners
Ralph - a Shih Tsu - one of Bruno's Dog School friends

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