One of the side effects of Jasmine’s fascination with the smells in the yard is that she’s no longer reliable for recall. She gets out there, she romps around, and I call her to get her back inside. She is totally taken with the smells in the air and on the ground, and as she runs around sniffing at the chipmunk holes and other such exciting sites, her selective hearing starts.
We speculated that maybe it was her hearing…but the tiny crinkle of a food wrapper from 100 yards away will roust her from a deep sleep into full attention. Nope. Not it. She’s ignoring me. So much for my pride in my ability to recall her and her steadfast focus on me. How silly of me!
What’s really wonderful about all this is that there are signs every day that she’s coming more out of her shell. She’s now focused on mooching food off of me every time I eat. It’s like she thinks she has a nickel of “cute” and I’m her vending machine…plop in that coin, press a button, and out comes the candy! And for the most part, she’s right. I’m such a total sucker for that cute face. I know I have to stop reacting or she’ll become increasingly whiny and difficult. I have to have courage!
She’s also pushing other boundaries (another good sign). The boundaries with the recall, well let’s just say that we’re starting from basics. I’m asserting my control by leashing her when I take her out so she doesn’t have a chance to ignore me. I’m also starting to do our recall exercises as well…I should be just about back in control when the snow flies. Then, she won’t want to go outside at all, and recall will be the least of my worries.