Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays’ take on things and experiences

Trying Hard

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Our wonderfully sweet and incredibly carnivorous Belgian Tervuren Shepherd, Delilah, was trying so hard to be a good cooperator yesterday for Cyndie. There is currently nothing more enticing to her than the scent of chicken manure and she has quickly figured out there is a really good supply of it around the chicken coop.

I suppose the presence of flittery feathered figures darting about enhances the allure quite a bit, but honestly, she seems almost more interested in the scent they leave behind. (I wish.)

In attempt to train her to better control her urges, Cyndie restrained Delilah a short distance from the coop while the chickens were romping in their courtyard and Cyndie was cleaning the coop. Delilah’s job was to practice staying calm while observing the action.

I think maybe she was closing her eyes in attempt to overcome the powerful drive revving inside her.

Sounds like it went well for a little while, but over time the urge would become unbearable. Delilah would get all wound up and let out a yelp. Next would come the nervous yawn.

After a little calm assurance from Cyndie, the exercise would resume for another round.

We are hoping to keep up a regular dose of exposure to the chickens for Delilah, while closely supervising her state of increasing excitement. In time, if we last long enough, she should become bored with the situation. When that happens, we ratchet up the exercise to bring her another step closer to the chickens while working to help her maintain a state of calm submission.

I am inclined to think we will get bored before she will, but I think the only alternative involves risks to the chickens that we don’t want to take.

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Written by johnwhays

May 11, 2017 at 6:00 am

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