Thursday, November 7, 2013

Working with Distractions

I'm pretty sure I posted sometime shortly after moving to this apartment about how Isaac found it very difficult to unload the clothes dryer for me when there were other people around.  He was much more interested in what they were doing, and in trying to get some attention from them, than in getting clothes out of the dryer for me.  Now, unloading the dryer is a task that Isaac usually enjoys.  He enjoys all his tasks, really.  But he enjoys socializing with people more than unloading the dryer.  Who can blame him?

Today Isaac and I went down to the laundry room, and on our way there, passed two of our neighbors in the lobby.  One is a woman Isaac likes and the other is the guy that lives next door to me that Isaac initially did not like but now loves.  I don't know why Isaac did not like him at first but he really didn't.  However, he now adores him.  Isaac spotted the woman first and was on his way over to see her when he realized his guy friend was nearby and then he ignored the woman completely in favor of his other friend.  He is not very polite like that.

I let him visit for a few minutes, then told him it was time to go get the laundry.  He followed me but kept looking back over his shoulder.  I opened the dryer door and he got to work.  He was happily wagging his tail, which kept smacking loudly against the other dryer.  The two neighbors in the lobby came down the hall to stand in the doorway of the laundry room to watch Isaac work.  The woman had seen him getting close out of the dryer before but the man hadn't.  Many of my neighbors get a big kick out of watching Isaac unload the dryer.  They were being really quiet and trying not to distract him, but Isaac knew they were there, so I had to remind him of what he was supposed to be doing a couple of times.

Isaac did such a good job.  I did have to get his attention a couple times and remind him of his job but he did not once try to go over to his friend and he refocused as soon as I reminded him of what he was supposed to be doing.  He's gotten good at working with distractions.

When Isaac was finished, I picked up the basket of laundry and realized the man had left.  The woman was still in the hallway.  As Isaac and I were getting ready to get on the elevator, the man got off the elevator.  He had gone upstairs to his apartment to get some dog treats.  He thought Isaac was working so hard and doing such a good job that he needed some treats.  Now, I did have treats in my pocket and Isaac had gotten three or four while getting the clothes out of the dryer for me.  But apparently my neighbor felt he needed some special chicken treats for his hard work.  Isaac, of course, was most appreciative.

1 comment:

  1. Just a suggestion or two. Make sure he gets no attention from anyone till his job is over. Also do you put on his vest to do the laundry? He may not think it's work time unless he's wearing it.

    Once he realizes he can't get any attention from the neighbors until he gets his work done he should start doing his job first then trying to get petting and treats from neighbors.

    Just my two cents worth, feel free to