In the house, Cookie's got much better at not chewing up everything in sight. She's got a handle on things so they don't just randomly jump into her mouth any more. Much.
When she does get something to play with, though, sooner or later she's determined to eat it.
She cannot have any toys unsupervised.
Outside, there are so many temping things, sticks and branches in particular.
And with the wild weather, there have been plenty of them in spite of all the snow we had.
It wouldn't be a problem if she just liked bouncing around with the sticks or shredding them. That is, of course, allowed. But like with everything else, if it hangs around her mouth long enough, it gets eaten.
Eating sticks is not such a great idea.
Our bright plan was to teach her to drop the stick when asked, or leave it when asked. Good enough plan, no?
Cookie is a very good girl, always eager to please and from the start she's been more than happy to drop or leave the stick on request. Rightfully, she got rewarded with a praise and a treat.
All sounds good, doesn't it?
Perfectly good plan. But Cookie learned something else from it: "If I grab a stick, and then drop it when asked, I get a treat!"
Can you see where this is going?
Yup. Cookie will grab a stick. Then she'll drop it just long enough to acquire her treat and grab it again (or a different one if there are more around). That is her new game.
How many sticks can she grab and drop per minute?
Just in case you're wondering—a lot.
And yes, she'll leave one if you ask her, just to find another one. She thinks it's a great game and a great way to get all the treats you can eat!
Best laid plans ...
So now what? I guess trying to turn "an empty mouth" into a trick ...? Or teach her to carry around something else so the mouth is occupied doing that? Or just ignore the whole thing in hopes that she will lose interest in both the game and the sticks?
Yes, she's a smart Cookie. Plus we think that Jasmine is secretly coaching her.
So who exactly is training whom?
How do you outsmart a dog who has outsmarted you?
Outsmarting A Smart Dog
From The End Of A Lead Line To Casa Jasmine: Meet Cookie, Our New Adoptee
And So It Begins Again(?) Our First Health-Related Heart Attack With Cookie
I Didn't Know I Could Fly: Why Cookie Wears A Harness Instead Of A Collar
C.E.T. Oral Hygiene Chews For Dogs CAN Be A Choking Hazzard
Our First Health-Related Heart Attack With Cookie: The Knee Or The Foot?
Creative Solutions And An Incidental Product Review
Too Young For Pot: Cookie's Snack With A Side Of Hydrogen Peroxide
Taming Of The Wild Beast: Cookie's Transition To Civilization
Staying On Top Of The Ears: Cookie Is Not Impressed
Putting The Easy Back Into Walking
Cookie's Ears Are Still Not Happy
The Threat Of The Bulge Is Always Lurking
Today Is Cookie's Three-Months Adoptoversary
Cookie Meets The Electric Horse Fence And Her First Chiropractic Adjustment
Why Examine Your Dog's Vomit?
Why Is That Leg Still Not Happy? Cookie's Leg Keeps Getting Sore
Cookie Too Is Insured With Trupanion
Does Being Insured Mean Being Covered? Our First Claim With Trupanion
Is Cookie's Leg Finally Getting Better?
Is Cookie Going To Be Another Medical Challenge Or Are We Looking To Closely?
The Project That Is Cookie: Pancreatitis Up Close And Personal
Pancreatitis: Cookie’s Blood Work
Another Belly Upset: Pancreatitis Again Or Not?
Happy Birthday, Cookie