Blessi will work really hard for any kind of treat but his favorite is peanuts. While clicker training, I usually reward him with one--that's right just one--Spanish roasted peanut. Blessi is very careful in taking the peanut off the palm of my hand. Since peanuts are so small, sometimes it is like feeding a fish to a dolphin. Blessi kind of opens hims mouth and I throw one peanut onto the side of his tongue.
We were practicing tricks in the arena. I brought the whole can of peanuts into the arena and occasionally refreshed the stash of peanuts in my pocket. The peanut can was stored in the observational area--a little porch-like structure raised above the surface of one corner of the arena.
|Close up of lid showing where Blessi bit |
through the plastic
After finishing the session, Blessi and I excited the arena and stopped to socialize with Amy and her horse. Quick as a thought, Blessi grabbed the peanut can by the lid and popped the top strewing peanuts about the gravel. How did he know how to remove a plastic lid? It is not like he gets to practice this movement which usually requires opposable thumbs.
As a follow up, he passed a fellow boarder's tack box and noticed she had a can of leather cleaner. As an optimist, Blessi made a grab for the can again--going right for the lid. Thank goodness I was able to intercept that movement.