Agility training

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by Panzerotti, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    I'm hoping they go to REQUIRING breakaway tires here. Our club doesn't have one but they're so much safer.
     
  2. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    They aren't even allowed in AKC much less required. It's madness. Instead they lowered the tire jump height 4" (so 24" jumping dogs have a 20" tired, 20" dogs have a 16" tire, etc.) which makes no logical sense especially from a safety standpoint.
     
  3. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    Stupid!
     
  4. DJEtzel

    DJEtzel New Member

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    I had my first experience with breakaways in CPE a few weeks ago. Saw a sheltie hit at the worst possible angle. So thankful for that! You can't even tell it's breakaway unless you know what to look for and your staring, why won't AKC allow them?
     
  5. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    It's in the works...actually has been for >2 years now, reportedly. But with AKC they tend to go the route of hashing every detail before acting...plus it's bureaucratic. So they are deciding things like scoring and weight requirements to displace the tires and whether the tire should auto-reset or have to be manually reset...that sort of thing. All before implementing.

    They have done good things too, to be fair, like shorten the collapsed tunnel which seems to have cut down on chute entanglements, and they've be consistently at 24" weave pole spacing for quite a while now. They also only have one size of all the contacts (vs. two in CPE for instance) so you're not suddenly confronting your dog with an old sandy dogwalk with 8' planks instead of the normal 12." Equipment is consistent. So I do have faith that they will get the breakaway tire implemented but yesterday would have been lovely!
     
  6. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    It's funny, I tend to think of the table as being sort of outdated for modern agility and am sort of surprised it's still used. I like the idea of simplifying it but I don't think I'd be sad to see it go all together.
     
  7. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    We train under an AKC judge, but we've mostly been competing in NADAC where there is no table (or tire, teeter, chute...lol) I don't miss the table at all.
     
  8. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    Practice tonight went awesome! I think we've gotten Summer over her weird tunnel aversion. I really think she just got confused and really thought 'I am supposed to run on top of the tunnel'. We had to start from scratch with a baby straight tunnel then work up to a long curved one.

    Mia's got a weird thing going on the last few weeks. She is refusing to leave her kennel. I am like... WTF is this? This is the dog that looooves to go running. It started the week I tried bringing kongs to cut down on the barking. I think I may have accidentally built up the value of the crate too high. She just lays in there and watches me. It like she thinks I don't want her to come out. Typical Mia... go from one extreme of hating the crate to the other- not leaving it.

    Sad news though is that my trainer can't teach us on weeknights anymore. My options- if the entire class decides to switch to Sunday nights, which could make nosework sundays difficult. But it should be ok however they will be back to back from 2-5:30, which is a long time for the dogs. I can maybe get the nosework people to try another time but the others have agility on saturdays so....

    Or I can transfer into the other trainer's class. I am not sure, I think I like my trainer better, she seems more laid back. I think the other classes are either too advanced or too beginner for us. But if it comes down to it I guess I will have to switch trainers.

    Also kind of sucks everything is moving to weekends. I liked having Mia have things two nights of my work week. Kept her more sane during the week.
     
  9. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

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    They did address tire injuries, they lowered the height of the tire. Which I agree, sounds stupid and useless, but in actual fact, it definitely seems to have improved things. Much less tire crashes. Which I guess on contemplation, does make sense, since the tire set at the dog's actual jump height would require them to jump higher than that height to get through it safely, so dogs who might be already pushing the limits of what they can jump, would be really struggling to clear the tire.

    I'd still rather see the displaceable tire, but fair is fair, they did do something. And I still think we'll get the displaceable tire someday.

    About the table... I'm another person who'd just as soon be without it. ;) If we do have to have it, I like the positionless table. Too much inconsistency in calls on a table with a required position. I've had dogs miss Q's because the judge wouldn't start counting until both of my dogs' elbows were on the table, which is fairly difficult for an excited Stafford to do (with the muscles tensed, chest and one elbow are usually all that will reach). And they don't have any hair to hide the daylight.

    I'd prefer to run my dogs, rather than loom over them trying to depress them into flattening out.
     
  10. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    Denis came to agility last night and used a clicker for the first time last night. He was super bored about restarting Sloans weaves but quickly realized how valuable this is to figuring out what I missed (I never did enough around the clock, maybe?) and he was having a blast watching Sloan think. Of course she progressed the fastest because she's brilliant but also because she was like, "I do 12 of these straight, why the hallway?" It was fun watching him have fun with this stuff.

    Meanwhile, we think Backup needs a ton more focus on the obstacles. He knows the game and has drive to enter but he does so with his head turned and watching me. We switched to a toy, after food just wasn't worth it to him, which was almost too high, at one point he did a wall turn off my legs and face planted into the floor while barking only to get up and restart like nothing happened. I wish I had an inbetween for motivators. After an hour and fifteen we made no real progress and a few times he got so frustrated he just started weaving figure rights around the two poles like SEE STUPID!? but now I know what I can work on for the week.

    Sloan was back on 4 straight with round the clock work by the end and I was still lined up with a single set waiting to click when he glanced at the poles and feeling like I was betraying him after years of giving him no options but to stare at me for obed.

    Any suggestions? Patience? Booze?

    On the plus side we scared a woman with a small dog but the trainer kept calming her and saying that dog wants nothing to do with you or your dog, he's obsessed with his mom and his toy, relax. It was nice having someone on our side and she stopped me outside on the way home and said he's fine and she looks forward to working with him more (this weave workshop was the first agility since October as I haven't found time/money for training yet). I haven't had a lot of trainers who liked Backup because he's so over the top(he's worlds more toned down these days) so it feels good hearing that.
     
  11. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    This is the HARDEST thing in my 2x2 class, when a dog has amazing handler focus but little obstacle focus. I have found that putting a target for them to drive to will sometimes help them out of their stare funk as it gives a more precise behavior. Of course then you have to quickly wean away from it.

    Otherwise, just patience and practice shaping other behaviors with objects so the dog figures out that they can't just wait on you to tell them what to do.
     
  12. FG167

    FG167 New Member

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    OMG I had the same thing with Kastle...we are now doing channel weaving with a target at the end for him to drive to. He is the world's worst shaping dog. Even when he is "getting" it, he is barking and doing other...unimpressive behaviors. I have the same problem - I've been doing obedience since the day I picked him up so his first offer is to stare HARD and then to start flipping into heel position or downing or other obedience exercises.

    ETA: Ooops, I came on here to say that I'm taking Limit/Eden/Robin/Kastle to agility private lessons today. I am excited and nervous...I bought Kastle a new toy that hopefully is not "too" rewarding haha
     
  13. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    I was going suggest that maybe 2x2 isn't quite right for Backup. I know in theory any of the ways of teaching weaves should be able to work. But I also know how hard it is to unstick a stuck Belgian when they're super sure that what they are doing is right.

    What about these as an in between motivator? They're fuzzy like a toy...but edible!

    http://images.quickblogcast.com/9/3/1/3/4/152492-143139/th_Rab_Ear.jpg?a=99

    or these

    http://www.bestbullysticks.com/shop/images/AJRF--Rabbit-Feet.jpg
     
  14. Panzerotti

    Panzerotti New Member

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    Yeah, I'm not sure what you've been doing, but what about going back to one jump. It might take a while, but just wait until his eyes flick toward it, release, have a party. Then build up to where he has to keep focused on the jump before he's released over it, etc.

    Mind you, I have now created the opposite problem, lol! Pan has major jump love and focus forward, so threadles are our nemesis! She cannot wrap her mind around running *past* a jump. I am having to break it down into little baby steps, and have big parties when she has the tiniest bit of success.
     
  15. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    Great suggestion!
     
  16. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    I agree with this. I had a similar issue with Webster when we first started...he would literally just run things over because he was watching me instead of the obstacle. Even if you don't do 2x2 and go with another weave training method, I'd go back and retrain looking at a jump, etc., because he needs to learn to balance his focus between obstacles and you in order to be successful in agility in general, not just in the weaves.

    It's also important to be self-disciplined in your support of that sort of dog. Don't look at him directly unless you WANT him looking straight back at you, like for a convergence. Train yourself to watch him with your peripheral vision and keep *your* focus on obstacles as well so he knows it's okay to do the same. If you continue with 2x2s, be very very careful to also reward on the reward line, not from your hand and, to the extent possible, not after he checks in with you. With Webster I had to reward early because he checked in so fast so occasionally I would be rewarding an early exit or similar but I just kept the poles open and easy longer to reduce the chance of an error and allow me to focus on keeping his head down and forward.
     
  17. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    I can definitely go to the single jump, he knows how to weave and can do 6 straight so I don't know if another method is our answer? My slight problem is I have been looking at the poles and I have trouble catching the minimal glances, plus he's not supposed to wait for my eyes, in theory in obed I should look ahead and he should still stare at me so that makes differentiating hard but I will continue trying. I know it's even more reinforcing when I stare into his eyes.

    I think we'll take a foundations class and start from scratch with him.
     
  18. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    Drilling entrances today and Sloan is hitting a very nice round the clock almost every time with a lowered jump before the weaves each time. She's even going out, around, over a jump and weaving with me on the opposite end of the poles. Fingers crossed this means we just needed to recover a missed step and we're on the way to fixing the issue. :)
     
  19. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    Is it just the weaves or does he have too much handler focus on other obstacles/sequences?

    You can go back and teach a forward focus from the flat and then introduce the obstacles and then sequences. Also watch that any high hand/arm movement doesn't make him refocus on you when you don't want it.
     
  20. k9krazee

    k9krazee Active Member

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    Crossbone has his last intro to agility class tomorrow!

    I found a new training center, with people I know and compete with, that we'll be starting at the end of this month. It's a little further away, but I don't care anymore.

    I have not web impressed with our classes these last 6 weeks :-/

    The dogs are learning the obstacles, but everything is done in a straight line WITH GATES. Like a line of jumps & tunnels all encased in gates with a target at one end. It has taught Crossbone to LOVE tables and targets and do obstacles in a straight line. The instructor scolded me for having him sit & wait at the beginning (you're going to squelch his drive & desire!!!!!!!) and encourages the dog to do it fast without handler focus or instruction.
     

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