A package arrived today from afar: genuine Omani Tinkwear. After custom tailoring to Piper’s size, we attempted the first modeling session. The dreaded head loop that he grew to despise on a previous harness took about 5 minutes to train. I think ShanLung laces his harnesses with drugs.
We’ll see how it goes from here. Definitely is soft and light. Many thanks ShanLung.
There was an interesting comment on the earlier discussion about acclimating Piper. Erin wrote:
I’ ve trained working dogs for ages and some of your story of Piper reminds me of this one pup I started up a few years back. Keen little dog , but unfortunately the first time I turned her loose on sheep it was a wreck by pure act of fate. Turned the pup off by sucking the confidence out of her and made her real up tight about sheep. I tried and tried to get her back interested with miserable out comes. Finally, I gave up in a way I’d tie her inside the 10 acre field to the fence line where she could see me and watch me work all the other dogs. After months of this one day I looked over there and noticed she was finally looking at the sheep with her pre wreck intensity, ok she was practicality foaming at the mouth to work. So I cut her loose and she was on those sheep and never looked back. So perhaps “forgetting” about Piper and let him just kick back and watch Carly be comfortable outside flying and you work with her while out there may get his little mind thinking it is ok. I know too from decades of starting young horses sometimes if training just wasn’t going the way I’d like I’d just shelve the horse for a length of time to give his young mind a chance to working things out. Physical maturity doesn’t alway denote mental maturity, also my female horses and dogs have always been faster to mentally mature and much more focused work ethic right off the start. Looking forward to see how this shapes up for you.
I’ve been thinking along these lines myself, having seen Carly go through similar phases. When we started flying outdoors she had no inclination to fly at the beach, never gave a single signal that she wanted to do anything other than sit on my shoulder, even though the macaws were flying. Then after about 6 months, one week she started doing her “wanna fly” motions that I’d become familiar with at the park and she was good to go. (We started small of course, with short recalls.) But I think it was much better for her to make the decision herself.
Piper comes out to the beach with us on a leash and rides on my head quite contentedly. Same around the park/pool where we live. When we’re able to generalize the locations so that he is calm in many more situations, and when it is clear he wants to be outdoors, we’ll start thinking about doing some outdoor flying. In the meantime, let’s hope he likes his exotic new duds.