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Plateau

Today we talked about learning plateaus, how to recognize them, how to avoid them and how to cope with them.

The consensus is that Rugby was experiencing his first ever plateau when I was forced to put him on vacation. A boring training session is a sign of a learning plateau (at least that is how I have begun to notice them). The cure for a learning plateau is to leave the training and come back at a later date. I had inadvertently avoided them before by introducing a new activity or exercise when the training started to get “boring”. In this way we were sort of ‘leaving’ the training by focusing on something new and different all together.
Now not only did we walk right onto this learning plateau, but his activity level was significantly increased all at the same time (i.e. spending full days playing in Margot’s yard instead of just a few hours). These two factors together = very tired Rugby. *Insert Aha! moment*

The energy is slowly coming back. He was so jealous yesterday that Red was working (being ‘placed’ on the stump practicing stays) while he was being completely neglected. Rugby found a seat just beside her in hopes that someone would notice and include him in the fun too.

Monday will be two full weeks since he has been worked. I can’t wait for it to come – this weekend is going to go by so dreadfully slow!

The more I think about the proccess of learning the more Chem 101 just keeps popping into my head, and that dreaded Energy v Temperature diagram that they make you study for endless amounts of time. If we changed the x-axis to ‘amount of training’ and changed the y-axis to ‘amount of learning’ it would look a lot like this! Hahaha!!

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I put in a request for Margot to answer the question of why aggression and reactivity have become more common recently. In the mean time, she has posted the same challenge that is still open here – to find 5 intact bitches and 5 intact dogs. That means two prizes for whoever gets around to it first!
 http://sanityshome.blogspot.com/2010/07/is-it-too-late.html

And a little more food for though on the subject –
http://gooddogowners.blogspot.com/2010/07/does-having-intact-dog-make-one.html

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