Monday, 18 January 2010

Luna sits

Not a review this time - I was going to post this on my LiveJournal blog, which is more personal, but LiveJournal doesn't seem to allow the use of home videos.
I love training animals, though 'training' is the wrong word - it suggests a stern, ordering process:
"Sit, sir. I say, Sit."
Clicker training is different.
Since I read Don't Shoot the Dog, Karen Pryor's book about using positive reinforcement to train, I've learned a new and getter way.
Training is a question of treats and fun, and a bonding of love between humans and pets.
Here's a video of me training my cat Luna.
Luna came to me as a terrified little animal. Her real owner had migrated back to America, and Luna was suddenly homeless. She spent most of her first six months under my bed.
By the time she died - I think a car got her, but it might have been a simple heart attack - some months ago, Luna was outgoing enough to come downstairs and touch noses with my dog and play chasing games with her. Luna's 1,000-yard stare had become the smiling face of a happy cat.
This is the second session of training to 'sit'. After this one, she'd always sit on command - though 'command' is the wrong word to use for a cat, of course. She'd sit if I said 'Sit', and gaze up at me with a joking look, as if we shared the same in-joke.

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