Day 1: Dog Training Seminar With Bernard Flinks

By Suzi Jones –

The Morning started better then expected. You know sometimes when you are going on vacation or away in general, things just are not or do not go smoothly?

Or you get the feeling like you are forgetting something or Things?

Maybe the typical light left on or you forgot to pack something to take with you?

That did not happen today,while I did not leave my house as early as I had thought I would head off to my adventure, I was aiming for 6:00A.M but did not head out the door until 8:00A.M. Much to my surprise the trip started smoothly,Windy, chilly and very gray with low clouds that you could almost reach out and touch them if you stood on your tip toes ,but traffic was very light which makes driving less stressful.

That is until I reached the half way point and that would be the german city of Kassel, The traffic was getting slower, (for no visible reason) then the rain started! So 1 hour of driving slow for no reason then driving no faster then 100K’S or 60 MPS.

Is that not always the case? Trip starts off great then WHAM a 5 -1/2 hour drive turns into a easy 8 hour drive?(O.K factor in 1 hour to stop to get gas twice and potty breaks for me and the dogs so 7 hours would be safer to say.

Of course at one point I thought I was lost and had to get off the auto bahn to look at the map to double check where I was going and was I on the correct road to begin with.

“Call me when you are in the near and we meet and I show you around” was the last thing I had heard Bernard Flinks say in our last telephone conversation. Well of course I do not have a hands free device, So driving and calling on your cell phone is against the law and all my luck I would be the one to get stopped and ticketed So I did the next best thing, I saw was what I thought was a dog and cat boarding kennel but drove past then turned around at the next intersection and decided to at least pull into the drive way and stop and ask.

There it was on the sign B-Flinks blah blah….. So I pulled up to the house, dialed my handy and when the voice on the other end said “Hello Flinks” I said “I am Suzi JOnes calling and I think I am at your house”. “Oh so you are” the other voice on the phone says.

Mr. Flinks explained he was all day to a FH tracking trial and had just arrived home he was wet and asked if I would like to go find the place where I would be staying for my visit as this would give him the opportunity to change out of his wet clothing himself and me to unload the car. Then we come back and I would like to see how you practice with your dogs (Nothing like being put so quickly under the microscope.

So I get Hella out and Mr Flinks says practice and work your dog as you normally would so I can see and evaluate you both. Of course I am unsure of what type of correction would be viewed as too harsh by Mr.Flinks as have run the gamut of one dog club being too harsh with correction and the other saying I am too harsh. So where is the middle ground?

You know how we say things about 3 time rule when giving your dog a command and they learn that they have until the 3rd time then comes a correction? Well,It was commented a few times how I can have a NO TIME RULE effect and if your dog knows the command you have to allow them 1.5 seconds to react then Boom correction. My timing was also way off the mark.

I had no idea what I had learned all along from other dog clubs was wrong! Wrong is not the correct wording a better wording is out dated.

Needless to say I was very impressed with what I had learned in the first day and the improvements Hella had started to make so quickly!

Tomorrow my job is to just keep practicing what we did today with the bite wurst Play, then take my right hand under chin, slowly stroke her in the direction of her fur,keep tension on the bite toy,then stop stroking her but leave my hand under there so if she starts to chew I can bap her and growly no command,then slowly release the toy from my left hand (right hand still under her chin) then slowly move the right hand away and tell her growly NO when she looks away. BUT first and foremost is DO NOT MAKE HELLA OUT DIRECTLY IN FRONT OF ME! Move her around in a circle while carrying the toy then off to the side have her out and if she does not out good in 1.5 seconds Pow prong collar correction. Well that was all for today .Ah yes there is even a proper way tp pet your dog Do you like when someone runs their hands over you eyes? or uses their finger tips moving fast and hectic running on your skin? SO I even had to change the way I pet my dogs (At Least Hella)

Tomorrow comes the protection work.

Oh I should have added, Of course I asked Mr. Flinks if it would be possible for me to get pictures of me working with him and perhaps a video or so and if he had any objection to me putting them on my web site and of course he commented as log as he could use my pictues and or videos of us on his web site. What do you think I said? No? O.k I may be slow to learn but I am not stupid!