Atticus and Butt Bar Noises, 2-1-13

Atty and I practiced trailer noises again today, but I didn’t get any video. I was so focused on getting my helper out of bed I forgot the camera! I also forgot my target at the beginning, but that was fairly close to hand.

Anyway, we started with rattling the butt bar while he’s facing it. Then we put it up in the closed position and rattled there. He also got to nose it, sniff it, and rattle it a bit himself. I didn’t spend a lot of time here as he seemed very relaxed about it all.

Then we closed the door and banged it several times with him facing it. We swung the door open and then closed again while he watched. The door went right by him and he even had to move a couple of inches out of the way. I let him load and he got a treat from Kelsey.

While we were changing positions, he backed out. I targeted him with my cone and asked him to load again. I was up front and Kelsey was in back. She rattled the butt bar in its vertical position while I was up front targeting him with the cone and treating. He seemed quite fine with this.

Then we changed to banging it in the horizontal position while I targeted him. He seemed okay here so we hooked it up and Kelsey continued to rattle it.

This did seem to bother him. There were times that he did not want to target and had his head up and other times his nose was in the hay bag looking for treats. When his head was up and he didn’t want to target, I had Kelsey stop rattling the butt bar. When he targeted the cone, I treated, and had her rattle the bar again.

He did try to back off two or three times. At these times, his head was up and he was looking behind himself. Kelsey stopped rattling the bar when he backed up. When his head came down and he targeted again, she rattled the bar again. After the third back up and he came back to me, I told Kelsey to take the butt bar down. Then we were done with that and he backed off.

I guess he needs more time with the butt bar horizontal but not hooked up.

From here we played with the pedestal a little and he’s really getting good at it. 🙂

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About Laurie Higgins

I play with clicker training - with my horses, dogs, and cats. I also attempt to grow vegetables with the hope of one day being able to feed my family from my garden. My daughter and I are learning ballroom dancing. Well, we were. But she left me for a paying horse job, so now my husband and I are learning ballroom dancing. I'm also now helping Peggy Hogan, of Clicker Training Horses (and The Best Whisper is a Click) to teach people how to train their own horses using "clicker training".
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