And We’re Back!
Everyone was in a much better frame of mind this week and did their best. We have a very surface reactive dog in our class who blows everyone else out of the water for shadow handling, restrained recalls, and tunnels, but buja board, walking on a dogwalk plank or over the ladder? No thank you! It just goes to show that every dog has their strengths and weaknesses!
Does anyone else ever want to just growl at other handlers to PLEASE keep their dogs under control? I know it’s usually easier said than done, but when your dog is slipping away from you to come harass my dog in a ‘friendly way’ (riiiiiight…) I take it that you simply can not handle your dog. And it upsets my dog.
We were introduced to tunnels, and I learned first hand that when you first open a tunnel around your dog… don’t do it around your dog! Quick went into a little panic attack when the tunnel sounded a bit like thunder and popped open. It took him a few minutes of trotting around and sniffing for him to be willing to enter. I had to crawl into the tunnel for him to see how to get to me, but once he got the hang of it, he was great! (This was after I got a hang nail from the ribbing of the tunnel… ow. )
Ladders are a challenge for Mr. Clumsy. He is the poster child for not knowing he has back feet! Two times through on the ground, and then raised, too. On the fourth time through he was getting a better idea of it, and amazingly he did better at a trot than a walk. Go figure. Regardless, there will be much practicing of this in the coming week.
I discovered a new reason to love Affordable Agility’s new freestanding Competition Adjustable Jumps! Take the bars off and use it as a shadow handling tool. Use two to do fun figure eights and change of directions! Quick and I had a blast with them, before we moved on to practicing with lattice wings. Those were harder, since he had to move much further from my side. To begin with, we approached it from an angle so it wasn’t quite so far, but it was still a challenge. He’s doing very well with it, and it’s a lot of fun. I’m having a time of it not ‘flicking’ my wrist to send him around. I should point smoothly, not flick him away. We’re working on it!
His release word worked perfectly this week. I practiced for two minutes before work every morning. I put him in a down stay on the porch (or a sit stay) and set his breakfast on the ground. Slobbering and squirming ensued until I released him with a nice, even ‘Okay.’
I think I’m going to start teaching him to target next, so we can get a little ahead of the game, so to speak. Then again, since I don’t really want to do 2O2O with him, I’m not sure when we’d really use it. Any ideas?