Free running Iggy

Alongside her formal training walks, Iggy is allowed to go out on regular free runs. This is her real play time; she loves running free over the moors around our village. The children really enjoy coming along on free runs and call her frantic freedom sprints “Mad Dog Crazy Time”.

While she’s letting off steam and exploring the countryside, she is also learning. A key part of free runs is to reinforce some of her obedience commands, particularly recall. This means, she must come back to me immediately when I call her. As with everything else she does, Iggy is exceptionally good at this but it has taken months of training to get her to this stage.

Iggy In The SnowWith a clear system of starting, carrying out and ending the free runs, Iggy has learned that she is rewarded with lots of positive attention, strokes and sometimes treats for coming back to me when I call. This structure reinforces everything she learns during other parts of training and means that she can really enjoy her free time.

Like most dogs, her very favourite thing to find on a free run is fox poo; and around our countryside there is lots of it! Using her extraordinary sense of smell, Iggy is able to find it easily and loves nothing more than rolling in it to spread it all over herself – she must think it’s some kind of perfume, but let me tell you this… it’s disgusting! The smell is horrific to us and ensures she gets a cold water shower from the garden hose when we get home before going into the house!

Free runs are fabulous exercise for Iggy (and for us as we follow her over the moors) and ensures she stays fit and healthy ready for her challenge as a life-changing guide dog.


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About the Blue Peter puppy blog

Lindsey Russell and puppy Iggy

Blue Peter have named guide dog puppy Iggy and will be following her as she works towards graduating as a fully qualified guide dog. Keep up to date with Iggy's progress right here.

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