Friday, June 20, 2014

Alarm Clock Training

Well, I've finally goofed up.  I slept through my alarm and missed an appointment today.  Luckily, the office had mercy on me and waived the $50 missed appointment fee.

My medicine isn't supposed to make me sleep through things, but the doctor says it may just be thanks to the depression.  Usually I'm sleeping through an alarm or two, but I'm up by the third.  This time, I had been volunteering at the Humane Society and got home with barely enough time to get a full sleep cycle in before going to my appointment.

Overall, I'm moving really slow with Elsa on service dog tasks because she is only four months old.  She's not totally house trained (on occasion she still pees on the floor without warning), but she usually holds it if we are sleeping in the bedroom.  I'm going to start training her to wake me to the alarm clock so that I don't have this kind of thing happen again.  I can't afford to miss important appointments, and if it gets worse and I start missing work related things, I'll be in REAL trouble!

So here is the alarm clock training we are doing!

- peanut butter
- alarm clock

Initially, I have just set the alarm to go off randomly.  Once it goes off, I smear some peanut butter on my hand and encourage her to lick it off.
Next, we will move to me smearing a bit of peanut butter on my face and laying down while the alarm is going off.
Finally, I will wean her off of expecting the peanut butter immediately and encourage the licking until I give her the peanut butter as a sign that I'm up.  I will immediately take her outside so I cannot fall back asleep and mess up the sequence.

Anyone who is reading this, feel free to comment with any problems that you see possibly arising.  Also, any tips on how to train this consistently so that she is reliable would be awesome!!!

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