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A Tale of Two Teddys

I got a call to work with two miniature poodle, litter-mate brothers - both named Teddy. One is Teddy Graham, and the other is Teddy Bear. One of the brothers (Graham) is super attentive, lovable, affectionate, and always seems to know what they want him to do. The other one (Bear) is mischievous, won’t listen, not toilet trained, very vocal, and jumps at people’s faces.

This reminded me of my brother and me. So of course I said yes, I’d love to work with the Teddys.

We work with them separately, of course, as we do with litter-mates. Both love my method of training, and throw themselves into it 100%. It is so much fun to watch them think and learn. Their homework assignments are like little games that they have a chance to win every time - and they love to win. They love the action games - the hand targeting “Touch!”, where they run up and bop your hand with their noses, to get a “yes!” and a treat.

Running back and forth between their humans, Carole and Joe, is a great first step in having a reliable recall. The sit stays and down stays are a little more challenging for the pups, and they are learning the new skill along with self-control. When Teddy Bear gets frustrated or excited, he vocalizes, and it sounds like he’s shouting “I KNOW! I KNOW!” and it cracks me up. “Come on Teddy Bear, time to get to work…” “I KNOW, I KNOW!”

The Teddys are now learning to run over and lie down in their beds when we ask.

UPDATE - Teddy Graham damaged his dewclaw, and had to visit the Highgrove Veterinary Hospital to have the dewclaw removed. He doesn’t handle anesthesia well (unlike his brother), and he's limping a bit, and slowly getting back to normal. Training has been postponed a week. Please keep Teddy Graham in your thoughts. I’m sending him a get well soon card.

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