Reader Question

Pat asked; I have two questions. 1. the only obstacle that I am having a problem with is my ECS coming down the teeter. She hesitates at the top and needs to be coaxed down. How can I get her to just keep going?

2. Would more than basic obedience be bad for us when we are doing agility? Some say being that you train the dog on the left side, they could have a harder time learning the right side of you.

For the teeter I suggest rewarding at the end of the plank. In class we usually put duct tape on the end and then smear some spray cheese or peanut butter on the end. It may be that she doesn’t like the motion or noise – if so, take a step back in your teeter training and reward speed and pivot and sound as you do so. (Also, keep an eye out for the holiday sales at AffordableAgility (or call and ask us we’d love to help!– we’re getting in a new product for a limited time only, JUST for teeter training!)

I personally love basic obedience – and advanced obedience. However, I do suggest making sure you learn to work off both sides. I do not think that this is confusing for the dog, since I use a different command for heeling off my left and heeling off my right (a really good trick to have in your repertoire!) and I use no verbal commands, just hand signals for handling agility – I point to the side he’s supposed to be on. So far, it’s worked out well for us, and I do like that he’s a bit more manageable outside the agility ring than some other agility dogs I know. I do use only positive methods to teach him, however, no matter what we’re learning, from herding to obedience to agility!