July 21, 2017by doglando0

Today we did some work training in the morning, and quickly cleaned the barn, but the highlight of the day was the trip to Kings Landing to go canoeing with the dogs!

We can fit two or three kids and their dogs in each canoe and go around a short circular canoeing path or simply canoe up to the “swimming hole”, with the rope swing and the diving platform, and spend the day there.  There are things to climb on and logs to sit on and we can run up and down in the water with the dogs.  This is always one of our favorite trips!  Even though some of us had never been in a canoe before, we all did really well and had a great time!

Tonight is our camp sleepover, where we spend the night in the barn (or even outside, if the weather holds) with the dogs.  Tomorrow we will make ourselves breakfast, and have a busy day before graduation at 4:30 pm!

Mckenna and Kane - AS6J8225
Elsa and Jack - AS6J8994
Audrey and Moana - AS6J7915
Alyssa Zeus and Ella - AS6J8782
Justin and Carlos - AS6J8158
Kiera and Trinity - AS6J8684
Dominic and Liberty - AS6J7596
Ella and Zeus - AS6J8957
Moana - AS6J7912
Kylie and Maui - AS6J9080
Sarah and Tanner - AS6J8062
Tess and Titan - AS6J9069
Ella and Charlie - AS6J8262
Tess - AS6J8901
Taylor and Cobb - AS6J7881


July 11, 2017by doglando0

Today we jumped right in to training with crate exercises and loose leash walking.  We are not perfect yet but everyone made a very good start!

Crate exercises teach the dogs about waiting for a signal to move or leave the crate, but mostly they teach the humans the basics of training: setting up the environment (or “antecedent arrangement”), giving cues properly, and proper timing and delivery of reinforcers.  Loose leash walking teaches the humans how to use their body to give cues to the dog, rather than using the leash.  It’s all very complicated but we are learning fast!

In the afternoon we gave everyone a bath and nail trim.  Then, while the dogs were resting, we caught up on some of the details of crate exercises and loose leash walking: defining terms like behaviorinteractionpositive, and reinforcement so we have a better idea of exactly how we are communicating with the dogs.

At the end of the day everyone went out to take a break on the grass outside, so that we can continue to build our relationships with our dogs!

Sarah and Tanner - AS6J3926
Moana - AS6J3962
Taylor and Rockwell - AS6J3912
Dominic and Liberty - AS6J3954
Kane - AS6J3894
Tess and Titan - AS6J3935
Kylie and Maui - AS6J3904
Mckenna and Kane - AS6J3888
Ella and Zeus - AS6J3892
Justin and Carlos - AS6J3908
Ella and Charlie - AS6J3929
Audrey and Moana - AS6J3945


July 11, 2017by doglando0

Today we learned about Doglando, where everything is and what we need to do to keep our dogs healthy and happy.  We learned how to hold a leash properly and how to clean the crates and pick up poop.  We visited the enrichment dogs and learned about how Doglando takes care of their enrichment dogs.

We went on a field trip.  We visited Petland, Orange County Animal Services and Pet Alliance to learn about how people go about getting dogs, and what happens when the people and the dogs don’t get along.  We learned about how people adopt dogs and even met an adoptable dog, Star.  We also learned about habitats and how habitats can shape behavior later in life.

Then we worked with each dog, and made our selections.  It only came down to one game of rock-paper-scissors to choose who worked with whom!  Everybody got a new and interesting partner to work with and learn from for two whole weeks.

Taylor and Rockwell - AS6J3828
Rockwell - AS6J3743
Ella and Charlie - AS6J3800
Audrey and Moana - AS6J3747
Volunteer at OCAS with Star - AS6J3660
Dominic and Liberty - AS6J3839
Elsa and Jack - AS6J3784
Tess and Titan - AS6J3844
Carlos - AS6J3725
Kiera and Trinity - AS6J3813
Justin and Carlos - AS6J3794
Mckenna and Kane - AS6J3816
Sarah and Tanner - AS6J3853
Group with Star - AS6J3654
Charlie - AS6J3755


July 3, 2017by doglando0

The last day of camp is always bittersweet.  We have some of our most memorable moments, because the dogs are by now used to working with us and trust us to help them through strange spaces, and we can do things like visit public beaches or — as we did today — visit senior care homes and interact with the residents.  Imagine trying to do this on Day One, with the dogs fresh out of the shelter!  But today everyone was happy, peaceful, and enjoying receiving kibble from complete strangers.

We also visited Full Tummy (without the dogs), to meet the people and animals who benefited from our bake sale fundraiser.

Then we showed off everything we’d learned in the last two weeks in our graduation ceremony!  Despite rain bucketing down and rattling off the barn roof, everyone did very well, both dogs and kids.  We’re always so happy to see how everyone has grown and changed in only two weeks.

Afterwards came the sad part — we had to say goodbye.  Some of the dogs, including Xena and Harry, were adopted right out of the graduation ceremony!  Some of the dogs, including Girl, had meet-and-greets scheduled after graduation.  Anyone who did not get adopted does not need to worry — Pet Rescue by Judy is there for them until they do find their forever home, which will be EASY with all the work our campers have done with them!

It’s hard to say goodbye to the campers, too.  We all learn so much from each other.  Hopefully we will see you all next year!

Ella
Ayla
Alyssa and Chance - AS6J1687
Sophia and Harry - AS6J1846
Lynsey - AS6J1790
Ashley and AnnaLesa - AS6J1815
Chloe and Jack - AS6J1833
Audrey and Harry - AS6J1666
Mary and Gracie - AS6J1737
Ayla and Softie - AS6J1694
Mary
Addison and Xena - AS6J1835
Ella and Colton - AS6J1659
Rylan and Tanner - AS6J1681
Tess - AS6J1736
Peyton and Lynsey - AS6J1809
Carlyn and Girl - AS6J1650

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June 24, 2016by doglando0

WP421873In the morning we packed up our things, tearfully left the puppies at Doglando (no pets allowed at the Zoo!) and went to the Brevard Zoo to see how people work with other animals.  We got to see meerkats and siamangs and even meet some giraffes on the Zoo’s giraffe-eye-level feeding platform.  Everybody got to feed a giraffe a lettuce leaf.  The giraffe’s head was almost as long as some of the campers were tall!

When we got home we went swimming very quickly one last time and then went to work cleaning out the barn for graduation which started promptly at 4:00.  Almost 50 people were there, including everybody’s parents and even members of the community interested in adopting the campers’ dogs.  For the graduation presentation every camper showed a video about his or her dog, and then all the campers got up, got their dogs, and demonstrated all the things we learned over the last two weeks.  Everybody did great, at door exercises, crate exercises, cone exercises, bed exercises and even at loose leash walking!  We have all learned so much!

At the end of the day we paused to say goodbye to our camp dogs.  These dogs come to us from local shelters (in this case, Pet Rescue by Judy) and for two weeks, the dogs think that this is their new life, and we are their new owners.  We are very sorry that we now have to make the dogs sad by sending them back to the shelter, but dogs who have been trained at Camp Doglando always eventually get adopted, and are never sent back to the shelter once they are adopted — they have great training and great manners and every single one of them is fantastic with kids, a wonderful pedigree to get them the best new homes and keep them there.

On the bright side, Bella’s new family was here today to take her home after graduation, and Steven’s family adopted Diesel, who also went home right then and there!  Five other dogs have meet and greets scheduled soon.  Success!

Steven and Diesel - AS6J2616
Ella and Hilde - AS6J2448
Kiera and Millenia - AS6J2461
Ayla and Ella with lorikeet - WP421861
Sarah and Apollo - AS6J2743
Eleana and Justin - AS6J2955
Dominic and Boris - AS6J2918
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Audrey and giraffe - WP421790

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June 17, 2016by doglando0

Today we had some fun on- and off-leash outside, with the campers and dogs learning to play with one another.  We added the “pedestal” to our training arsenal — this is a small raised platform the dog can learn to climb on and off of, and sit or lay down on.  In the afternoon, we brainstormed for a fundraiser to buy food to make meals for the homeless.  (To make 60+ meals, our grocery list started with 18 cans of corn and 18 cans of green beans!)  We decided to have the dogs make paintings we could sell, and everybody ran around covered with paint for a while.

Of course then we had to go swimming!  Today the dogs learned to swim a little further before getting out of the pool.  (This is how you learn to do things that are scary at first — take them in small increments.)  To help them feel safe in the water as they swam, the campers got in the pool with them, and supported their bodies as they learned how to move in the pool.

Ella and Hilde - WP420441
Kiera and Millenia - AS6J1155
Steven and Diesel - AS6J1045 - cropped
Katie and Ross - AS6J0994
Eleana and Justin - AS6J1057

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June 16, 2016by doglando0

Today the campers and dogs learned about interactive toys — toys that don’t just entertain the dog, but which require the human to be a full participant in the process.  Dogs and humans were meant to play together!  Everybody tried different types of toys — hiding toys which hid food, toys which made food hard to get, and a strange bell-looking thing which everybody just liked to chew on because it was made of wood.  (Okay, the dogs liked to chew on it — the campers, not so much!)

In the afternoon the puppies had their first swimming lesson!  Camp Doglando has a great, full-sized swimming pool, with a dock to dive off of and a rubber-covered ramp to get out with.  Campers gently placed their puppies in the water and guided them right to the ramp, so their first time in the pool was short and sweet!  Tomorrow will be much more exciting!

Eleana and Justin - WP420208
Ella and Hilde - WP420286
Sarah and Apollo - WP420251
Natasha - AS6J0679
Justin - AS6J0598
Jacob and Alice - WP420276
Dominic and Boris - AS6J0640
Sarah and Apollo - AS6J0629

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June 15, 2016by doglando0

Now that the dogs have the basics down, it’s time to work on the “three D’s” — distance, duration, and distraction.  The dogs can “sit” — now they have to sit for longer times (duration), sit while the handler is further and further away (distance) and sit even if someone has dropped kibble on the ground next to them (distraction)!  Not every dog is great at this at first, but we are all learning!

Everybody did so well today that we went on our first field trip with the dogs — to Twistee Treat!  Everybody had a great time and enjoyed their ice cream — even the dogs, who got “Pup Cups” of their own to enjoy, topped with a dog treat.

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June 14, 2016by doglando0

Today introduced the basics of training.  Dogs and campers learned to do “crate exercises”, which is a fancy term for learning to come out of the crate politely, carefully, and only when asked.  Campers introduced the dogs to the language of learning — treats! — and brought them homemade tug toys made from old shirts so they would not be lonely in their crates.  Dogs and campers both learned about crate exercises, “sit”, “shake”, and “down”.  The dogs had their first bath, too!  We also learned about how working together with everybody else creates a web of responsibility — when one of us drops our part of the web, the whole thing falls apart!

A few lucky dogs even got to go home with their campers tonight!

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