Thursday, March 1, 2012

A Puppy Class Group Walk With #SAGApupVolt

The puppy class group walk is usually the last class for us puppy raisers, and after our 10 weeks of classes we only see our SAGA PDS once a month to keep an eye on our progress.
Because Volt's puppy classes have largely been attended by only him and Vegas (he has 2 siblings in the Cape and his other 3 siblings attend class on different days), our SAGA PDS decided to combine our last class with the "T" litter's last class as they're only a month older than the "U-V" litter that Volt is from.
This morning we met up at Fourways Crossing with Vegas, their sister Umeka (who has a longer coat like Viking), Toby, Themba, Tuppence, Tamika, Queenie (a slightly older pup) and one other dog who's name I've forgotten.
getting ready for the class
Volt and Vegas (in their jackets) meet their sister Umeka for the first time since they were little
Nine puppies- most of them in their smart blue training jackets- is quite a sight to see!
The aim of the group walk as a last class is for our SAGA PDS to see how the pups (and us puppy walkers) cope with a busy shopping centre setting, other dogs in public, and lots of people, attention from strangers and shopping trolleys. We climb stairs and ride in elevators, and after the walk we stop somewhere for a cooldrink or a coffee so the pups also learn to sit or lie still when they are in a restaurant-type setting.
walking in a line
"stop, "sit" and "down"
"stop", "sit", and watch trolleys go by - without flinching
climbing stairs - which must be done slowly
The group walks are an important part of the pup's training and our last class is not the only time Volt and I will take part in one. And we have a lot of work to do. If Volt is at the head of the line he's very well behaved, but if there's a dog in front of him all he wants to do is catch up and play! I'm actually developing calluses on my left hand from his leash and he's not even half grown!! Apart from people and trolleys, the pups also have to get used to the rumble of an escalator (the puppy walkers don't actually go on them, we just stand on the metal plate at the top or the bottom), riding in elevators, looking down from a balcony and not trying to walk into every open door they go past.
Isn't it amazing how much these pups have to learn!?

Toby chilling in the Wimpy after the class
Vegas on Wimpy's cool tiled floor
Tamika enjoying the cool floor in the Wimpy

click on the puppy to make a donation to SAGA

Don't forget to check out the Twitter hash-tag #SAGApupVolt to see regular updates on my puppy raising adventure!