Don’t Worry, Be Happy

June 3, 2012 § 22 Comments

Butterflies were fluttering in my tummy as we headed for our last Good Canine Citizen class. This particular class was to be different from the ones before it. After 8 weeks of training, it was time to put all our hardwork to the test. Both MM and I were hopeful that Lil’ Miss Maple would do her best after seeing how well she had adapted to learning the commands and befriending some of her canine classmates. So, when it was our turn to take the stage, we mustered up our nerves and went for it. There were times when I thought, “Oh, boy. I hope the examiner didn’t take notice of that slight deviance…” But, all in all, Miss Maple did pretty well. For the first part, that is!

The second part was a group test. And this was when it got to be a little much for the furball. The canine students were lined up in a row for a 30-second “Down-Stay”. Miss Maple was sandwiched between two of her bigger canine peers, and I think that made her feel slightly uncomfortable. About 15-seconds into the test, Miss Maple broke from her position and gingerly walked towards me. Oops. Well, that seemingly innocent move led to an automatic F-A-I-L. We didn’t bring home a ribbon that day, but we stayed on to soak in the joy and excitement of Miss Maple’s classmates who passed the exam with flying colours. Congratulations to the graduates! Here are a few of their beaming smiles πŸ˜€

Although we completed the Good Canine Citizen Course sans ribbon, we tried not to let that get us down with worrying thoughts. After all, our little munchkin tried her very best to make us proud. We’re more than happy with Miss Maple’s progress and, even though the course has ended, we’ll definitely continue brushing up on her Good Canine Citizen skills. So, to reward ourselves (and to celebrate Miss Maple’s belated 2nd birthday) we headed out for some fun in the park!

If there’s one thing that can lift Miss Maple’s spirits, it would be a ball—baseball, basketball, soccer ball, tennis ball… you name it, she’ll play with it! First up, the soccer ball.

What do you think? Does Miss Maple stand a chance to play in the 2014 FIFA World Cup? Watch out David Beckham… here comes Lil’ Miss Beckham!

Next up, the tennis ball. Miss Maple is frighteningly obsessed with this itty bitty bouncy thing. In fact, I dare say that her affection for the tennis ball far outweighs her addiction to liver treats!

As we were playing, a couple arrived at the park with their two furkids in tow. It took no time at all for Miss Maple to initiate greetings with a bark. We were introduced to ‘Girl’ (a very sociable Shih Tzu mix) and ‘Honey’ (a spunky little Chihuahua). It took a little longer for Miss Maple to warm up (she often requires a slow start) but, soon enough, the trio became friendly acquaintances. Here’s a cheerful video that we’ve pieced together as a thank you to Girl and Honey for reminding us to not worry (about the past) and be happy (about the present)!

I think this is one belated birthday adventure that Miss Maple will remember for a long time to come. Just look at the furball’s sand-caked paw. I think the picture says it all. Happy Birthday, Lil’ Miss Maple!

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§ 22 Responses to Don’t Worry, Be Happy

  • annyboo says:

    I think lil Missy did very very well… πŸ™‚ who needs ribbons.. hehhehehee.. 15 seconds stay is pretty good for starters.. she’ll improve along the way.

    Happy 2nd Barkday to you Missy Maple. You indeed have a very very fun day at the park.

    • Thanks annyboo! You’re right… it’s not like we have a nice display case for ribbons anyway. So, even if Miss Maple did bring home a ribbon, it would end up collecting dust *ah.. ah.. chooo* πŸ˜‰ Wishing you and Dom a great week ahead.

  • Peter says:

    Hi mark and wife ,this is Peter n chew Mei we met each other together with your little maple at botanic gardens last sat.hope u can contact agian at xxx .we hope to see u soon and maple

    • Hi Peter and Mei! It’s always great to meet another pair of dog-loving pawrents. I don’t know who had more fun that day at the park – our furry companions or us (lol). Thanks for your contact. Who knows, we might just bump into each other at Bishan Park the next time around.

  • raisingdaisy says:

    I’m proud of little Miss Maple for doing as well as she did! I can understand why she felt uncomfortable between two large dogs and wanted the comfort of her mom. πŸ™‚ It’s so great to see photos of the little cutie again – we missed her! Happy 2nd birthday Miss Maple! You look so happy and just as adorable as ever! πŸ˜€

    • Yeah, I think Miss Maple felt that the two big dogs were a little too close for comfort. She was eager to escape! I’m glad we brought her to the park afterwards for a run—we all needed to de-stress (lol). Thanks for the birthday wishes πŸ˜€

  • Anna says:

    Good for you all for training her for this test!! More little dog owners, and honestly dog owners period, should do this. Would be nice if there were more “good citizens”walking around rather than little terrors. Those down stays can be hard, don’t beat yourself up about it. I would say that is probably the biggest thing people struggle with, the “stay” command when it comes to teaching their dogs. Surprisingly when we tested that was the thing I KNEW Luna would ace, it was the reaction to another dog (or when they wanted NO reaction) that I worried about, but she did me proud and acted like that dog wasn’t even there. Hope you all can take the test again soon! SOunds like she deserves her ribbon.
    Keep up the good work!

    • I’m glad we registered for the course (even though it was a little difficult at times to roll out of the bed on a lazy weekend to attend class… for 8 weeks straight, lol). If not for the program, I don’t think we would have been quite as disciplined and methodical with our training. Our main reason for signing up was because we were losing control of the lead to our little dog, who was obviously taking charge of the walks. Now, 8 weeks later, Miss Maple heels on our left side and is increasingly more focused on us. However, we still have a ways to go with her on-leash reactivity to other (big) dogs. So, our training doesn’t quite end here! As for re-taking the test… maybe not so soon. I’m still waiting for the jitterbugs to settle down. I don’t know how professional handlers participating in competitive sports and competitive shows do it!

  • Congratulations on all of you for your accomplishment! Your commitment paid off with the results you have seen — progress comes to those who stick with it like you have. I just loved all the pictures. Having fun is so important to our everyday adventures, too! Thanks for sharing.

  • Congrats on finishing your class, Miss Maple! I just started my therapy dog class– I like it a lot!

    • Hi Charlie and pawrents. Thanks for visiting us. We’re glad to hear that you’ve started on a journey towards becoming a therapy dog. Sounds like fun (and a great cause) – we wish you all the best!

  • totomameee says:

    Woah I think Maple did pretty well! I bet the ribbon is already sketched in your heart keke~ I think TOto wouldn’t be able to perform a STAY between 2 huge dogs as well, he would want to ‘PLAY’ and tackle them once we release him~
    Erm maybe not even 15seconds for TOto ~

    Congrats Maple!

    • Hahaha… well, at least TOto is thinking of ‘PLAY’ and not ‘AAAHHH, GETMEOUTTAHERE!’ I think TOto would ace the test. In fact, he doesn’t even need to take the test—I bet he’s already a good canine citizen!

  • Paws To Talk says:

    Happy Birthday! It looks like you had a great time frolicking outside!
    Bella and DiDi

  • Papoe says:

    Happy Birthday Maple πŸ™‚
    In just 2 years you have shown us that you are a better football player than Beckham πŸ˜‰

  • Bassas Blog says:

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  • Bassas Blog says:

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