Photograph of Helen Keller at age 8 with her t...
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Saturday, October 16

She SITS! Splash has crouched into a sit on the stairs now and then, but this morning by the back door, she sat when I rewarded M. for sitting. I clicked her. Then outside, I asked M. to sit while I picked up poop, and Splash sat, too. We ran into Michael and Duncan on the far edge of the property, and she sat to meet him, unasked.

Hmm. Monkey see, monkey do. Mandie worked with her last weekend when she was at the kennel. Maybe Splash is working up to the same kind of “oh, I get it!” realization that happened for her with down, spontaneously connecting something she does with something I’m asking her to do.

When Splash puts something together, I feel like Annie Sullivan must have felt pumping water over Helen Keller’s hand, at that moment in the play when Sullivan suddenly felt Keller finger-spell w-a-t-e-r. Splash seems to learn in “water” moments. Repeat, repeat, repeat – no progress – aHA!

Training by accident, naming behaviors she does spontaneously and putting them on cue – Splash looks trained, and I look like a rockstar. And in reality, it’s nothing more than being in the right place at the right time, with a click and food.

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