Raising Ragnar – 6th Instalment

Raising Ragnar – 5th Instalment
25th June 2018
Raising Ragnar – 7th Instalment
5th July 2018
Show all


I had more time this morning so I had a bit of an explore to see what was the best way to teach Ragnar to let go of the toy because he prefers to hold it and parade with it rather than come back and play with me. He is definitely worse with this when Erik is out too.  So I sat on the ground and waited for him to come over.  I did a lot of just stroking him and letting him keep the toy and then playing some tug and letting him keep the toy.  I then lifted him onto my lap and waited for him to drop the toy, then picked up the toy, put him down and then waited for a sit before recommencing a game with him.

This seemed to work as he was happy to come back to me with the toy to play around me even after I had taken the toy and given it back to him.

He isn’t interested in swapping for another toy so the two toy game is not going to help at the moment, equally he isn’t really interested in swapping for low value food, I will try high value food next time.

It is interesting seeing his character developing as he gets a bit older.


Ragnar had his second lot of jabs today so we had quite a quiet day no much doing other than keeping up with the basics.


We did some more training with Ragnar today, more clicker training with the cone and adding the cue ‘touch’. I experimented with adding some cue discrimination with sit and he nailed it first time.  He then had a bit of a hesitation to go back to touching the cone but worked it out very quickly.  I have been working on this with Erik recently to see if this helps when adding a cue.  Less initial reps before adding in some discrimination.  Seems to be working for these two.  I will keep notes on this as I go along.  I managed to teach Erik to be very confident in assuming what he needed to do by not changing the patterns up soon enough so he finds listening and working on what I tell him quite difficult.  So in order not to end up with the same issue with Ragnar I will need to try some different things, which seem to be helping Erik learn to listen.

His lead work and walking next to me off lead are making some good progress and after tomorrow we will be able to start to generalise this a bit more out in the real world.

Ragnar is also learning to sit a wait for his meals until I release him. Breakfast is a bit of a challenge as he is quite hungry but the other meals are working well.  He is also not trying to eat Erik’s food which I put down first before taking him to his crate.  He is interested in the bowl when it goes down but then shoots off to the crate for his.

He seems to be very easy to divert away from unwanted or inappropriate behaviour – hopefully this will continue into adulthood  🙂

An example of this is not ‘helping’ with the dishwasher emptying. He is now choosing to take himself away and mooch in the living room or sit outside the kitchen.  When he sits outside the kitchen I am rewarding him.  He really is a thinker.

He is starting to self-settle out of the crate more now rather than getting over tired and bity he is managing to bring himself down and settle and rest.

I had both Erik and Ragnar out with toys in a field just playing with them and the work that I did teaching Ragnar to choose to hang out with me with a toy rather than go into stand-off mode seems to have paid dividends. I was throwing a ball for Erik and Ragnar was running around a bit and then coming back to hang out with me while Erik was playing.  I was stroking him and then every now and again playing a bit of tug with him or throwing the toy when he let it go.  Good bit of progress there.

I also noticed the other day that when he gets tired and he has a toy he starts to look for somewhere to bury/hide it. A very ‘cocker’ thing to do!


We continued in our normal routine at home but started to add in some new walks as he is able to go out in the real world now. Ragnar was introduced to my local park and met some nice small friendly dogs which was great.


Well Ragnar mostly learned about gravity and water today – oh and looking where you are going when you are running!! He was running looking backwards at something, didn’t see the stream, ran out into fresh air and then rolled head first into the stream. Looked a bit confused as I helped him out and then carried on like nothing had happened. He was quite happy to go and paddle in a bit which had a better entry point further on. Love this puppy, so robust in his outlook on life. We went for our first walk around the area on the lead today and he met the recycling truck, he took a few minutes to sit and think about it, ate some treats and then decided that this was OK and was happy to walk past it even though they were chucking things in as we past.

We also went and set up for a weekend Gundog Training workshop which involved lots of stuff in the car piled round his crate and then watching me and a friend set up a tent, tables and various boxes of stuff. He took all this in his stride and played round the tent with Erik.