Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Our progress remains slow, and I am okay with that. I am in no hurry and am enjoying each training session we have. I do wish that I was a bit more motivated to do more. But I'm working on that!
He shows great potential and I am hoping to trial him eventually. Maybe Spring/Summer even!
Here is a list of things we've been working on.
1) Dogwalks- we are finally past the backchaining portion of my contact training and am now doing full dogwalks. The training space I have with the dog walk is very small however so am unable to work on finding the entrance, adding equipment before or after, or too much in the way of proofing with my motion. But we have enough space to work on sending, recalling, and running with. And proofing the end behaviour. So I am happy!
2) A-Frames- are on hold right now. There isn't quite enough space for me to work on a running frame. So we just do the odd ones here or there. So it will have to wait for Spring before we get much progress.
3) Teeters- are coming! He is a pro at finding the approach and is learning how to drive into the contact like I want at the end. I'm hoping to be able to start putting it into sequence in the next few weeks.
4) Weaves- are so close! He had some setbacks- I used the 2x2's for too long. Not in the 2x2 position- but as a set of six and he learned to slam his way through and push them. I can't stake them where I train so was just taping them to the floor. It didn't work so well. lol. So now we are on a solid base of six and he is having to relearn some footwork.
5) Table- he hasn't seen one. lol. It's on my list of things to build in the spring
6) Tire- he has seen one only a few times- again on my list of things to teach when we are outside and I have equipment.
7) Tunnels- he loves. A little too much. I can see many off course tunnels in our future.
7) Handling/Jumping- he's got the foundation handling down for the most part. He can find a line, send down a line, do a front cross, do a rear cross, a blind cross, and even the beginnings of a serpentine. He understands the basics of a threadle- but we need to work on that a lot more. He is slow to react. We are learning the new fancy stuff via youtube videos. lol. It's interesting. I feel for the most part that we are just fumbling around. But I think that is my confidence issue, not so much the dog. I did register for online lessons with Dante, but I just do not have the spare time right now to commit to regular sessions. Any spare time is spent trying to make money, not spend it. lol
I do hope in the near future we will be able to get on track handling wise. I've got some exciting agility weekends coming up so I think that will help to motivate me, and give me some direction! If nothing else he needs experience, and to be able to learn to work in that kind of environment.
Oh, and he is a poor jumper. I will likely special him, hopefully he measures under.
General Training Observations
He goes into this weird trance if I do too many repetitions or if he is unclear about what I want. It is bizarre and I have to actually physically stop him and pat him for a few minutes before he goes back to normal. Very weird.
He has very low stamina. Not just agility, but in everything. Even exciting things that he does for fun- like running in the coulee. It is weird. And I've been working on trying to build it up, but I can't MAKE him run any more than he wants too. He needs to go to the vet for a check up, so I am going to get a full blood panel done on him too just to be sure everything is okay.
He is crazy smart and learns things fast, but does not generalize well. Doing the dog walk in one direction is not the same the other way... Strange, but true. So we do lots of changing things up to help him to learn that a dog walk is indeed a dog walk. ;)