The dogs and I have been practicing our Toto Fit 6 Week Challenge Week 1 Exercises every day this week. And here’s where we are now at. Tomorrow, on to week 2 exercises!
Tom week 1 progress:
Zora week 1 progress:
Find It is one of our go-to games. It’s been a feature in Zora’s life since she came home at age 5 months, and part of Tom’s for years as well. Zora’s first winter with us was one with snow storm after storm and drifts so high the dogs could have easily walked over our fence should they have chosen. That winter Zora embraced the joy if “Find It” in the drifts, deep diving to find her precious tennis ball. Again 5 month old puppy. 5 month old short stubby legged corgi puppy. She would leap like an arctic fox and POOF! down into the snow to emerge triumphantly with her prize! Hysterical. She learned what a horrid, unpredictable thrower I am that winter, hence the need for her to really, really perfect her find it skills.
A video of baby Zora finding her ball in the snow:
The Find It game takes many forms in our house. From classic hide and seek with people, to out of sight stays while we hide a toy, to food hides, to finding hidden toys by name sometimes having to bypass other hidden toys searching for the one I asked for. We play it both indoors and out. When it’s really, really cold out, it becomes an indoor staple game. Both dogs love it. LOVE IT.
One of their most enjoyed versions is when my husband plays too, he can find some of the best hiding spaces in our small home. He’ll hide in the tub, behind doors, under a blanket, nearly under the bed. The dog’s love racing through the house air scenting trying their hardest to find him.
Today we have already played a few games of find it with their toys. The toughest hide was for Zora when I hid the ball inside my shoe inside the hall closet with the door only ajar enough for a doggie nose to nudge it open. Apparently the smell of my shoe masked the smell of the ball, as she went into that closet twice sniffing intently then after a few seconds of searching come out a bit puzzled, move on to another area of the house only to return again to the closet. Maybe it’s time for new less stinky shoes!
They are now tuckered out. All that running around, using their noses and brains too, is tiring!
As it’s now Sunday and now definitely feeling like winter around here, I thought it would be a perfectly good time to start some indoor fitness exercises. I came across the Toto Fit 6 Week Challenge and thought to myself “Hmm, this might be a great winter program for the dogs and I to begin.” I have accumulated a couple of balance disks and physio balls over the years, and use them often for myself with exercises I’ve been given in PT. I’ve found exercises like these are good both mental and physical exercise for the dog (assuming dog is physical able and vet oks such), which when it’s freezing freezing cold out having indoor exercises to well exercise the dogs are a blessing. I generally find myself teaching the dogs some indoor fitness type program in the winter. Last year I taught them how to use a tread mill. Based on how excited the dogs were when they saw me bring the balls and balance boards down to the cellar training room, I think it’s pretty safe to say they enjoy these winter programs.
The Week 1 Challenge exercises are all done on the ground. And the week 1 video that the powers that be at Toto Fit post gives a nice demo of the skills to practice.
Here is part of the video of our morning practice from today. It was interesting to realize I’ve never really taught the dogs to stand or stand stay on cue. Also apparently forgot to teach Zora how to back up on cue. It was comical to start:
Tom week 1 Toto Fit Challenge Exercises
Zora week 1 Toto Fit Challenge Exercises
We plan to practice these exercises a little bit each day. And hopefully progress through the challenges over the next six weeks.