Wednesday, October 27, 2010

manners minder attempt 1

I finally got the MM out to play with West. my battery in the remote is way dead, so i have to hold it in my palm to warm it up before it will let me press a button. If anything, I think this has helped me give him more time between reps and not be impatient!
He was initially curious about the machine, and I made sure he was as far from it as reasonably possible before I activated it the first time. He still leapt pretty far, but did go in for the cookie relatively quickly. We're about 1.5cups of kibble later, and he's actively backing up and looking at me, for the cookie. He still jumps most of the time when I activate it, but dives straight back in for the cookie. Good progress! I'll have a new battery tomorrow!
I'm hoping to use the MM, thundershirt and calming cap combination wiht a Mat to create a VERY SAFE space that is portable. Then, it will just be a matter of fading the items one at a time, carefully. Good stuff, west!


  1. Try mixing some bits of dried liver or lamb lung (or whatevah)in with the kibbles - higher value treats, especially on an intermittent basis, might b just the thing to help West forget the scary noise.

    Are you spraying the DAP onto his Thundershirt, near his chin? Or, you could spray the mat or a towel with the DAP and place the MM on it.

    Until you get a juiced up battery, you could also just toss a treat into the MM, after clicking. He already has a good association with the click.

  2. Due to the way the machine works, mixing pieces in tends to clog it up. I could certainly put the kibble in with something super smelly to give it a higher value, but he is making good progress with the plain Evo.
    He's wearing a DAP collar, not the spray, so it's with him all the time.
    He has no problem approaching the Manners Minder when it isn't spinning at all. That was the first step, before activating it. He just figured it was another food toy, trying to paw/roll it to get the kibble out!

  3. Huh.
    I have a MM, and if I pay attention to the size of the chunks I mix in, it works well.

    Smelling up the kibbles with something lovely, like tripe or cheese or anything that wouldn't fit into the MM would certainly work too!

    I use the Kong Tots, since I raw feed and have a super small (13 lb) mini Doxie. I use the small wheel and even have had success making the opening smaller by partially blocking the opening with the poster tacky stuff.....ahh, fun-tak.

    Have you tried triggering it at the remote's limits (hopefully, this would be below West's startle threshold, too) and then tossing a treat or feeding him one? Then, you could just move closer and closer, as he acclimates to the noise.