Training for the day finished almost two hours ago and I, for one, am exhausted. Don’t know about Brenda. She seems to be an adrenaline junkie and there is no stopping her.

The morning was taken up with more lectures where we learned the reasons behind obedience training, dog language and the infamous pack hierarchy lesson. The last is the only one that I really remember from my first visit.

Before lunch, and then again after, we took walks with our trainers, Mandla and Eejay, going over obedience and getting basics in place before meeting our dogs.

After the second walk, we were sent to our rooms, to wait for our dogs. This was different from last time, where we all met our dogs in the lounge with the trainers present.

This time, it was just me and Yanky. That’s his name. He is a huge Labrador Retriever and pure black. We spent a few minutes shut in my room, where I gave him a beef stick, broken up, to break the initial barrier. He just sat leaning against my bed for the most part, lapping up the attention and giving me the occasional lick.

In the room next door, Brenda, the other student, was having a similar experience with Yanky’s sister, Yala.

Mandla and Eejay took our dogs outside ahead of us and we met up with them, to have our first walk with our dogs, just doing some basic sit, down and stay commands. It was only near the end of the walk that Yanky began to realize that I was actually trying to give him commands. And thank heavens Eejay was with me because he is a powerful animal.

Tonight will be another early night, with our dogs resting in kennels. From tomorrow, they will be with us 24/7, and the fun really begins!

Trudie, Yanky & Eejay