Luigi and I went to Telemundo NBC studios on Tuesday.  Why?  Because Luigi had an audition for a Spanish language soap opera.  Luigi is a ham, and his ham-ness came out on Tuesday, too.  Thankfully.  He walked onto the lot as if he owned it.  He made friends with those who were up to it.  He loves people.  Some people were afraid of him.  One man in particular pet Luigi on the rump twice and as soon as Luigi turned around to sniff his hand, the man jerked it away.  Not particularly a good thing to do, but Luigi didn’t care.  He’s super easy.

The audition itself was, “Ok walk around with the dog on leash.  Then take the leash off and put it on the chair.  Do a sit and down, and paw shake.   Afterwards, tell your dog to get his leash off the chair and bring it to you.”  The man sat on the floor to film Luigi’s work.

So the first thing I had to figure out was how would I get Luigi to give me his paw.  I don’t recollect teaching him that.  I’m not into that trick because I get slapped with paws as it is, and I didn’t want to encourage it by teaching it.  That’s where I went wrong, by the way.  Luigi also didn’t know how to speak a couple weeks ago, but he needed to speak for the audition.  I reluctantly taught him to speak.  But then I realized I had to teach him not to speak, too.  Once he understood both the on and off buttons for speak, it worked out very well.  So perhaps I can teach him an off button for the paw trick, too.

When I started walking, I was figuring out my strategy and the man said, “At some point you’re going to have to take off his leash.”  Ooops!  I forgot about that.  So I took it off, and heeled him around the stage.  We were on a wood laminated floor with two spot lights on us.  I wanted to get that paw thing out of the way, so I had Luigi sit, and I reached out and told him to give me his paw.  Then he lifted one paw up, Saints preserve us!, but his other paw slid and both paws slid and he was having trouble maintaining stability on the floor.  So that’s when I stuck my foot in front of his paw and he lifted up his paw and I grabbed it.  I smiled and moved onto the next exercise.  I heeled him around, had him come front and finished the recall.  I had him sit and speak and down and speak.  His sit and speak was funny.  He spoke as if her were trying to get his motor going.  I heard the 3 people in the room laugh.

That reminds me, when I came into the room with Luigi, one woman behind the table grabbed her chair and held it up to Luigi like a lion tamer.  He ignored her.  No comment from my side.

He spoke better, or more like a Doberman, when he spoke from the down position.  I also did a touch and Luigi did a nice high and hard smoosh of the nose right on my palm.   When it came time for getting his leash off the chair, I told them I brought a toy he could fetch off the chair instead.  The cameraman agreed, and I put Luigi in a sit and told him to stay then I walked over to the other side of the room to get the Cuz ball.  I heard them muttering over his good stay.  I was very proud of Luigi myself.  He had his eye on me the whole time.  The treats I had surely had something to do with that, but so did our close relationship.

I came back to him, gave him a treat and put the ball on the chair.  That’s when I told him to get the toy, and he did.  Then he brought the toy to me and spat it on the floor at my feet.  I should have told him to pick it up, but instead, I did, and tossed it to him.  He grabbed it from the air and then decided to take off out of the room to go look for some people to play ball with him.  As soon as he was at the exit, I called him back and he recalled beautifully.  He was very impressive and I was so happy about his performance.

On our way out, the lion tamer took our phone number, and I took Luigi’s photo.  There had been a Weim before me and following me was an Aussie.  Then as we exited the building, there were two Goldens arriving.  Prior to the Weim were two Rotties.  I have not heard anything as to their decision.  I hope they at least notify our talent agent so she can announce who they picked.  It would be a lot of fun to work with Luigi in a soap opera.  But the audition itself was a blast; except for the drive over to Miami at rush hour, which was another story.

P.S.  Luigi’s collar was made by Lisa at Collar Mania.



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