Tuesday, June 23, 2009

TTouch in Santa Fe with Kathy Cascade

Hi, I'm writing from sunny Santa Fe, where I'm in the midst of a wonderful TTouch training with Kathy Cascade (http://spiritdog.com/). Each TTouch instructor who I have worked with has so generously shared their wealth of knowledge, and Kathy is no exception! Kathy is clear, focused and full of heart, and she has helped me to clarify some concepts in my mind which were somewhat muddy before, and has shared some new ways of looking at aspects of TTouch which have been very helpful to me as well. I look forward to the next days and learning much more.

Above, you see Kathy on the right and Jennifer on the left, with Jennifer's dog Booba in the middle. They are doing what is called the "homing pigeon" with Booba, who is generally quite fearful of new people and other dogs as she had a difficult past, and fortunately Booba hit the jackpot when the very kind and patient Jennifer adopted her. To get back to the "homing pigeon", this technique is very helpful in getting dogs accustomed to having a new person walk them on the leash, as with this technique both the owner and another person are leading the dog. Kathy and Jennifer are leading Booba through a labyrinth, which can really help a dog have focus, and can ultimately increase the confidence of the dog as well. Booba did quite well with this, and she has come a long way in the short space of several days.

The dear little fellow above is named Mr. Brown. He is quite the charmer, and I have had the pleasure of working with him several times over the past few days. He is a little shy of new folks but he, like all the other dogs in the training, is really coming along! Above, first you see Kathy giving treats to Mr. Brown as he gets accustomed to being able to leave his owner's side with less stress. Of course, he looks very stylish as well in his lovely t-shirt.

Then in this picture, you can see his new leash and halter setup with two points of contact on the harness (the leash is clipped on either side of the harness). The setup shown above is particularly effective for small dogs and puppies.

I'll be sharing more stories with you from the training soon!

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