Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by Panzerotti, Feb 6, 2012.
Zuma is awesome! They need to make more little bcish dogs.
I want a Backup!! I'll be waiting patiently on my door stoop for his arrival.
I would pay big money for a Zuma clone. Actually, Zinga is pretty darn close. So ya.
You should totally breed her in about 3-4 years. Mmmm hmm b
Hopefully it's ok to ask this here, since all you agility people are on here.
I'm goign to check out a training facility tomorrow. I've been wanting to go check her out for a while, but haven't because of money/time. Hopefully if all turns out well, Talon will start going to foundations in June!
Question, what should I look for? Other than positive training (all positive, basics I can see), but are there a few big things in agility that make one trainer great while another not that great? IDK, I guess tips?
I have to go to the competition agility class as my schedule this time around doesn't work with any of her other classes, so the dogs should be much further advance.
To say it briefly, the place should be in no rush to put your dog on/over equipment. They should emphasize shaping. They should emphasize a safe and controlled environment. They should emphasize the basics like off leash control, focus around distractions, handling on the flat and reinforcement for working closely with the handler before they even think about introducing you to obstacles.
How long do you think is long enough before equiptment is introduced? Obviously each dog is different, but as a general rule what is considered a good number of classes before a few pieces of equiptment are started?
This is a description of the first class we would take (it's pre-foundations)
From the description, that sounds like a great intro to agility class! The classes where I used to teach had dogs running "courses" at the end of six weeks. That is a bad intro to agility class in my opinion.
Things I'd look for during the competition class. How well does the trainer adjust things for different dogs? Not necessarily changing the equipment, but discussing different handling/reward timing/types of rewards for different dogs in the classes. Not every dog is going to train the same, and my favorite trainers are the ones who are willing to work with the 'atypical' dogs, rather than those who try to make those dogs fit the standard.
How confident do the dogs and handlers seem with the exercises? Obviously being challenged is part of class, but you don't want to see incredibly frustrated handlers or dogs showing serious stress/displacement behaviors.
How safe does the equipment and flooring look? I'm becoming a footing snob the longer I do agility. Indoors is always hard, because I don't think there is any mat that is truly anti-slip, but you don't want to see dogs losing their footing constantly. I wouldn't train with metal jump cups at this point. Tunnels should have some sort of tunnel bags, and they shouldn't be blocking the entrances at all. Most places have rubberized contact equipment at this point, at least around here. If it is still wood/sand, is the wood solid, or do some of the strips have splinters? Do dogs seem to be slipping coming down the a-frame?
All of this.
Big one for me: are the students (both dogs and handlers) having fun?
Finally got a chance to watch......wow! I love it!
I'm in love with the pug right now. She is a great little girly and we're doing so well as a team. Things are clicking (and my improved fitness and focus helps I'm sure).
We ran a standard from last year's AAC nationals at regional prep tonight. Izzie ran it in 52 seconds clean. Personal best for a course like that. No problem with weaves or contacts and she was driving like nobody's business.
**** I love this dog. She's making it harder for me to decide to drop her to 6" DD Vets or not for nationals as she's running so well at 10". We'll see.
We're doing a full novice course with prizes this weekend for our 'graduation'. Lol. Should be fun.
Well, we're officially done with our training building. Lease is up. So far we haven't found another place but she's still looking.
Trainer is considering having us switch Payton's agility class to being outside at her place in the meantime.
Nice! Our trainer did that a year or so ago (we haven't been in class since :/ just training on our own) and it was good for the dogs to work through the distractions. Web had to work through being watched by sheep and ducks in addition to other dogs and a new outside place and I was so proud of him for his focus. And Mira had her first ever distraction moment (this after a year of trialing and really never needing focus work of any kind her whole life): an above ground swimming pool right next to the ring lol. Oooh I thought her brain was going to explode. She fought it down and worked with me and I rewarded her with a release to the pool and she bypassed the deck stairs and just leaped the 4' wall straight into the water.
It was a lot of fun, and great exposure for both dogs. More than I ever would have guessed. I hope it works out for you and you have a positive experience!!!
I can't imagine not training outside! The months we have to play in the barn are terrible, we're so used to being outside as much as we can. Even if its pretty chilly such as the last couple Tuesdays.
I don't mind the freezing days but the 110 weeks suck. I wish we had an indoor place too.
Yep, our outdoor training field is bordered by a US highway where the country folk like to drive their motorcycles, the big sheep pasture in the back, and the smaller pasture on the other side where the ponies play. In the back is the pond where the duck plays.
We shall see what Payton makes of it. I think he's ready to be out there and deal with the distractions. Auggie never had any issues during practice, though once he was done playing he was like "HEY WAIT SHEEPS." I'm not sure what Payton will think. I know he wanted to play with the rams last time we were out there haha.
Ugh we need to get him on sheep at some point too.
We won't train outside if it's unsafe, ie. dark, covered in snow, way too hot, or it's an entire field of mud (which it has been for several weeks.) I'm really glad we had our training building, Payton learned how to play on astroturf. Auggie never saw astroturf until we did an indoor trial and he was like "What is this s***???" hahaha. So P will be equipped to handle both before we even start trialing.
I'm thinking about buying some of the astroturf from them if we don't end up needing it for our new building. I don't think I want it in my garage (I would like to park my car in the garage sometimes) but I might put it under the carport behind the garage... not a ton of space there, but enough room to get puppies used to playing on astroturf.
See and our trials here are either on barn dirt or grass. I've never seen AstroTurf anywhere or even the rubber matting at trials.
It's still light until almost 9pm here now so even our long regional prep class ends before dark.
You're lucky -- both those surfaces are generally superior to mats and astroturf, especially for big fast dogs. We were at a trial on astroturf a few weeks ago and the slippage was ridiculous even with sticky applied to groomed paws. Mira and the oter larger fast dogs were skidding everywhere. Webby was fine but he's a little tyke and not as fast. I won't be going back to that venue.
I wish we had more outdoor trials here. I love running on turf or arena dirt, and so does Mira. Especially the well done dirt. Bit of give, plenty of grip. Go baby go.
We train both inside and outside. We have to.
Everybody here is going to indoor. There are only three trials I can think of that are still outside, at least at venues I would go to. I've been to outdoor trials at places where the ground is treacherous for the dogs - I went once and wouldn't go back. There's the two outdoor local trials and Springfield is in a horse arena, but that's it.
One of the places in Indy just got new astroturf if I remember right... the old turf was crappy and everybody knew it, they knew it, they just couldn't afford to replace it for a while. Of course I haven't been back to trial on the new turf and nobody has mentioned if they like it or not.
Nobody I know has anything good to say about the floor at Purina Farms. EVERYBODY wants to trial at Purina Farms now though. So many clubs down south have moved there... blah.
Karen Holik may be dropping in my PK class tonight. I'm hoping her awesome agility handling rubs off on me. That is all.
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