School for Dogs: a guest post by Lola

My person is still working on that NaNoWriMo project, so I’m back to write a little more about my life. I am a busy dog and I like it that way. I patrol the house and yard and I’m also in charge of rodent abatement. It’s a fun job and I’m good at it. I’ve also taken a few classes to learn things that don’t come quite so naturally.

My teacher is Aleita Downer at Cape-Able Canines. She is a smart person who knows more about dogs than any human I’ve ever met. She teaches many regular dogs like me, but her specialty is training dogs to help people with disabilities. She learned how to do that by studying with Bonnie Bergin, the founder of Canine Companions for Independence.

My first class with Aleita was Puppy Class. I learned Sit, Down, Come, Heel and Stay and I learned how to walk on my leash. When I got older, I took General Obedience where we worked on some of the same things, but it was all just a little harder. Once I could do all of the things I learned in Obedience, I got to take Intro to Agility.  That was fun!

We jumped over obstacles, ran through tunnels, walked on boards that were high off the ground, raced up and down a ramp, went over a teeter totter, and leapt through a hoop. I was very good at agility because I am super fast. I won the race on the last day of class.

I'm very proud of my first place medal.

Next, I took a class called Tricks and Games. I learned to do things like Shake, High Five, Wave, Speak, Crawl and lots more. I love to do my tricks because I get yummy rewards when I do a good job.

Finally, my person signed me up for a class called Canine Freestyle. My person loves to dance and in Canine Freestyle, we dance together. We learned to do some basic movements with music. On the last day of class, we had to perform a short dance for the teacher and the other students.

My person and I are about to perform in class. My teacher and her canine assistant are watching.

This is a short video of my person and me practicing our beginner level dance in our costumes. You may notice that there are plenty of treats involved so I was happy to practice a lot.

If you want to watch an advanced Canine Freestyle dance team, take a look at this amazing video of Carolyn Scott and her dog Rookie dancing to “You’re the One that I Want” from Grease.

My person and I haven’t taken a new class for a while, but we still practice at home. It’s a fun way to spend time together and when we do our tricks for our human friends, it always makes them smile. What better reason could there be for doing anything?

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25 Comments

Filed under Dance, dog training, Dogs, Lola, NaNoWriMo

25 responses to “School for Dogs: a guest post by Lola

  1. Lola, I love your post today. I had no idea you were a dancer like your person. You have a talented family. And I loved the Grease You Tube of your friend dancing with his person. Made me smile and made my day :>)

  2. Lola you are awesome! My person tried to be responsible and took me to puppy school. I, however, didn’t think it was necessary to come when called every time. Sometimes I have something else to do – and seriously, why would I want to “heel” on our walks? Doesn’t my person understand it is my job to scope out the environment before she gets there? I’m only looking out for her best interest at heart.

    • Oh, I was so rude, Lola. I didn’t even introduce myself. My name is Luna and I am a one year old Maltese Shi Tzu mix.

      • lolapup

        It’s nice to meet you, Luna. I agree that it doesn’t always seem practical to drop what I’m doing and come when I’m called. When I do, though, I get some pretty yummy treats. I don’t really heel much on our walks. I forge ahead just like you to scout out the territory. The heeling is mostly for our dance routines. 🙂

  3. Lola, I had no idea so many classes existed for doggies! How I wish those classes were available here so Roxy could take them! The freeystyle class sounds funnest of all. I can’t think of anything more enjoyable than dancing with my furry friend! I really enjoyed watching your video with Shary! It was just wonderful! And what a great way to get treats! 🙂

  4. Karen

    Fae here. My person, Karen, had me stop tearing up newspapers to come see this post. I am good with the newspapers. I know she just loves coming into the den to find little tiny pieces of paper spread all over the room. But, I don’t get any treats for that job, and she makes some odd noises when she sees my work.

    I just finished my intermediate class. I am enjoying all the treats, too. My person and I are about to start advanced training. I was told that I would make a good therapy dog. My person has already started taking me to see her mom at the nursing home. I am quite well-behaved there.

    I don’t know if I will try dancing. But, I think it would be fun to do agility. I will wait and see how we do in the advanced class for now.

    • lolapup

      Hi Fae! It is so fun to tear paper into tiny pieces. It takes time to get all of the pieces just right. Dancing and agility are fun, but I’m so impressed that you are doing advanced training so you can be a therapy dog. That is a really important job. I can’t wait to hear all about it.

  5. Lola, you are just as hard at work as your person. When is the big dance taking place. Do we get to see you strut your stuff?

    • lolapup

      We aren’t taking a class right now, so I don’t have any performances coming up. I wish I did. Dancing is so fun!

  6. Great post, Lola! Can’t wait to see you dance more.

  7. Lola, I love it when you get to take over your person’s blog. That Rookie dog is a good dancer, but you’re pretty good too. It looks like lots of fun.

  8. Tom Scanlan

    Classic! OK, Lola, we know you have a very talented ‘ghost writer’ who tweaks your ideas and thoughts and makes them even better, but you have lots of fans who think you’re the cat’s meow (just kidding, doggone it). Tell Shary I liked her previous post , Life Itself, and would have left a comment but time was short. And you keep us posted on your latest post-grad studies. And congratulations on your awards. You sure are a winner. Tell your person I hope to get a note to her soon about our trip to Santa Fe and Oklahoma City (a 3000 mile CAR trip, no less).

    • lolapup

      You crack me up, Tom! I will certainly let you know about my next adventures and my person can’t wait to hear about yours.

  9. Lola, you and your person are just too much! I love the way you wear matching outfits when you perform. So perfect, and you are an amazing dancer. Good for you, Lola! Keep on truckin’!

    • lolapup

      Thanks, Monica! I have to admit that I didn’t have anything to do with the costumes. My person figured out that she needed to wear white shoes and a white t-shirt to match the white toes on my back feet and the white blaze on my chest. I could have done without the pink scarf, but I guess it was nice to have a little color.

  10. This is such a wonderful post, Lola!! I especially love the dance with matching costumes and the wave at the end. So cute! Another reason to love NaNoWriMo — the chance to see the dog blogs! 🙂

    • lolapup

      Thank you! I’m still working on my wave, but now I only do it with one paw. Maybe I should go back to doing it with two.

  11. Wow, dancing looks like a whole lot of fun! 🙂

    • lolapup

      I love to do our routines, but I also love it when my person dances around the house for fun. I always have to join in.

  12. Nel

    I adore those scarves, Lola! 🙂 I believe you have great potential.

    Thanks for sharing that video. This should be my last foray online for today and I’m glad my day is ending with a good laugh (on the amusement side, of course.) Happy weekend. 🙂