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Halloween! A very spooky time of the year! And a great training opportunity for me. Do you know why the Halloween season can be helpful to my training? 

There are eerie noises, scary costumes, weird displays, and spooky sounds. Which can be strange looking and surprising to me. Because they are not common everyday occurrences.

Do you ever get scared, or surprised, by a sudden noise? Or something that looks odd? I think almost everyone does, at some point. 

The same is true for dogs. But what they look for is how quickly the recovery time is. And what, if any, carryover there is to other unrelated noises or situations.

I met some new friends at the Halloween store!

So having the chance to wander around Halloween decorations and store displays. Along with people dressed in spooky or silly costumes, provides training opportunities for me. And ways for my mom to see how I am feeling.

I can practice keeping my attention focused on my mom. And not do any sniffing. Because sometimes it is tempting to check out things that look different.

But you know what? I am brave and not usually bothered by strange sights and sounds. So these opportunities just give me ways to keep my skills sharp. Although I do need to confess and tell you a silly story.

Soon after my mom and I got home from Team Training, we were walking in the mall. All of a sudden I hesitated and was cautious about moving forward. What had I seen?

Right there in the doorway was a funny-looking black dog! He had a mask on his face. And a bandanna around his neck. He was stiff and not moving!

I cautiously approached him. And poked him with my nose. But he didn’t move. And didn’t smell like a real dog. And then I felt silly. Because at that moment, I realized it was a stuffed dog!

I’m quite sure they are watching me!

I don’t react or really notice the eerie noises and spooky sounds of Halloween. Although I can be a little sensitive to banging noises that I can’t easily locate. 

So hearing a variety of odd and unusual sounds is helpful to my confidence. Since it helps me realize that I’m safe with my mom, no matter what is going on around me.

Not too long ago, my dad and brother, Eric, went to Universal Studios Orlando, in Florida. One night they went to the Halloween Horror Nights event. They had fun and loved all the scary things!

My dad told me it was spooky, scary, and loud. I wouldn’t have enjoyed that. And neither would my mom. So we sure were glad we didn’t go with them!

I was a pumpkin for my first Halloween!

Do you dress up in a costume? And go trick-or-treating? When I was a puppy I got to dress up as a pumpkin for Halloween! And my puppy raiser was a penguin! 

But my mom didn’t think about getting me a costume this year until it was too late. Buffy never dressed up in a costume. Since she wasn’t fond of having anything on her body. But I would do just fine!

Maybe next year I can get a costume! Who do you think I should be? Maybe I could be Slinky Dog! Or a lion! Or a pumpkin, like I was when I was a puppy! Or… Who do you think I should be? We have a whole year to decide!