Ayla and I are working on Mind Game #4: Patience right now. I am sitting at the dining room table working and I decided this might be a good time to give this “game” a try. So I pulled out the leash (she might have gotten the impression we would go for a walk since that is pretty much the only time we use it lately but boy was she in for a rude awakening) and put her into a “down” beside my chair. My first thought was I could just stand on the leash with my foot while I’m sitting…but of course that idea was very quickly dispelled the first time she put any effort into pulling away.

So then I went and got some shoes, thinking that would help me control her better …but of course if I’m not standing up, it just doesn’t work. And perhaps it wouldn’t even work anymore if I was standing since she’s a very strong little puppy.

Finally, my brain kicked in and I stuck the leash under the leg of the chair. She has only a few inches of play, just as the instructions suggest, and can just barely stand up. I tried to make it shorter but I almost end up putting the whole leash under the chair so I guess this is satisfactory as it is. She is definitely not comfortable when she stands so that must be a decent length.

I have essentially tried this twice and will be doing her first session at about 45 minutes. The first 15 she was going pretty nutso and then I realized my internet server had crashed so I had to leave her alone for a bit to eat the leash while I went upstairs to push the reset button. When I came back, I put her back into the down and stuck the leash back under the chair. This time, she got much wilder and about 10 minutes into it started raising such a raucous that our neighbors probably thought someone was being killed in here. Whining and whimpering and yelping like she was in pain and at the top of her lungs…actually it was pretty amusing and I could tell that it wouldn’t be long before she was totally worn out from the antics. After about 5 minutes of commotion, she laid down in a Newfie rug and passed out. Mission completed 😉

This is a “game” we will definitely be playing more and more in the future. Our first outdoor excursion with Ayla will likely be taking place this weekend. We plan to take her camping for the first time and obviously we would prefer that she just lays and hangs out in the tent instead of going nutso…and this would be quite helpful in the car while driving also. Although she is very good in the car most of the time, she does prefer to be as far into the front seat as possible which means she leans over the center console while I drive. Makes shifting a bit more difficult but I actually don’t reprimand her for it too often since I kind of like it. We will also be having our first restaurant outing with Ayla June 15th so hopefully this little game will come in handy then as well and she’ll be quite used to it by then.