Agility training

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

  1. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    When you're just starting with two poles then can click and throw as they commit/enter. There's...two poles.

    As you add poles, you throw as they are exiting which is why it's important to throw consistently down the pole line. You don't want them slowing or turning to look...you want them already knowing where that fantastic object of their deepest desire is going to appear, and driving for it. I don't use the clicker much at all after the two pole stage. "Scalpel", and all that.

    Later when proofing you can throw while they are in the poles to validate their understanding of the Task, the whole task, from start to end. But that's later.
     
  2. Finkie_Mom

    Finkie_Mom It's A Red Dog Revolution

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    Yep! Ditto what everyone has said about 2x2. It's hard getting the timing down, and as we got up to more poles there were definitely a couple of times where I rewarded when I shouldn't have, but you get the hang of it quickly. Here's a video I did of Kimma once she had gotten the hang of 2 poles a bit and we were working on more entries:

    www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZo1fkgcHpg

    I'm throwing food each time for her and at this point, rewarding her for coming back to me as well (we were having recall issues so every chance I got to reward her for coming to me was taken!).
     
  3. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    Also, never throw the food reward far beyond the last poles, throw over handed (that makes the dogs look up and back, a no/no) and throwing to the reward line is critical with either food or toy/tug. Method also calls for progressing quickly, most dogs will be doing 4 poles inline within 4 or 5 days :) Once you get 4 poles, the rest is easy-peasy.
     
  4. Finkie_Mom

    Finkie_Mom It's A Red Dog Revolution

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    Yep. One of the worst mistakes I made was hanging on to 6 poles for too long.
     
  5. Samsonyte!

    Samsonyte! New Member

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    Oh I didn't know it progressed that quickly! How long should I be working on it with him a day then? I just did a quick five minute session with him today but it seems like maybe it could be longer?
     
  6. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    This thread makes me want to sign Frodo up for a foundations course SO bad!
     
  7. Panzerotti

    Panzerotti New Member

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    I wouldn't make the sessions longer, but you could do more than one session per day. And like others have said, reward delivery is important in this method....you want the dog to be driving ahead, not looking back at you waiting for a throw, but at the same time, you don't want to place the reward as a lure.....lol, clear yet? :D
     
  8. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    2x2 is 12 poles in 12 days, the average dog owner (with an understanding of the method) takes a bit longer, typcially 3-4 wks.

    General rule of thumb is 3 sessions per day, for a MAX of 3-4 mins long.

    The owner also has to know what DASH means; Desire, Accuracy, Speed, Habitat.

    I am going to give a word of warning here, the 2x2 method is wonderful but like any other method it will fail if not trained correctly with a full understanding of the method and how to progress. The dogs that progress the best are the ones that already KNOW how to free shape. Otherwise it is stressful for them and they don't understand. The entire method is based upon a dog understanding that failures are ok and to try again, therefore they don't stress or give up. It is also critical that the hanlder/owner working a free shaping session is to NOT make those little signs of disappointment, that will shut a dog down in a heartbeat or at the very least demotivates a dog.
    It is strongly recommended that you teach your dog to free shape first and have your dog confident in that before tackling the 2x2 method (that comes from SG and the DVD).

    Best plan would be for you to get the DVD or get to a trainer that fully understands the method.
     
  9. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    I totally agree, what would you recommend for a dog that is uncomfortable with shaping and does much better with manipulation?
     
  10. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    That's where the chute/wire method comes in handy. The dog will eventually build the muscle memory and skills that way with very little shaping involved.

    I've taught a 2x2 class for close to a year now and Ado is right. The other thing handlers need to be aware of is that you CANNOT help the dog. Once you start helping the dog by luring (whether with a treat, your hand or your body) they will lose the independence that we are trying to gain with 2x2's. I struggle the most teaching people who have no understanding of shaping. We will eventually get their dogs weaving, but it's much, much more stressful for all involved.
     
  11. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    I have students that wouldn't want to even try free shaping let alone their dogs, so I have to get a little creative. I do have a set of channels and in those cases it is just easier to train that method.

    I love the 2x2's, but it like so many other methods isn't for everyone or every dog.
     
  12. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    One of two things:

    (A) Go back and help the dog to understand free shaping outside the xontext of agility. Be extremely self-disciplined and positive. Don't try 2x2 again until you have an engaged dog who understands the game.

    (B) Use a different method (channel, WOM, whatever)

    JMO
     
  13. Panzerotti

    Panzerotti New Member

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    Great post. 2x2 is very likely not going to work if the person doing the training doesn't have a firm grasp on the method, and the pre-req skills and knowledge related to shaping behaviours.

    Samsonyte, if you still want to try, is it possible for you to buy the 2x2 DVD, and/or the book Shaping Success?
     
  14. Samsonyte!

    Samsonyte! New Member

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    I might be able to get the book but all the sites which sell the dvd have them for almost 70 dollars? Do you know if there's any website which explains it in more detail then?

    Sam has class tonight so I'll ask his trainer if she knows anything about them and if she does I might take a private lesson or two just to get a better understanding. Sam hasn't done great with shaping in the past but I also haven't tried it with him in a while so we'll see!
     
  15. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    Thank you for your response. I ask because I have a dog that free shaping only overly stresses him out. The 2 x 2s seem to start to click but it took a very long time and they were never reliable with him. He just didn't learn the same as my other two who picked them up immediately, the other two also though are fabulous at free shaping.

    I have shelved his agility for some time, I just don't know how to reach him, don't have the resources, and one sport at a time seems more than enough for him so we're focusing on his ob, tracking, and bitework for now. When we readdress the issue we'll consider channels for him or another more manipulative method.
     
  16. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    Foundations class begins on March 8th. I'm going to die of anticipation before then. :p
     
  17. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    This is a awesome thread and I would like to suggest we add another element to it. A proofing challenge for agility training for the different levels that people are at with their dogs. Clearly some proofing/challenges should not be done until you have achived a certain level of training, so please be careful and possibly ask before trying something. Nothing is worse than over facing your dog at the wrong time.

    Want to play?? I have 3 different level challenges that I could post in a heartbeat :)
     
  18. Panzerotti

    Panzerotti New Member

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    Whatchya got? :)

    I can't really participate though, we are still in total training, in the middle of behaviour, mode.
     
  19. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    Bring it on :)
     
  20. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    I'll start with exercises that don't require any equipment and can be for any level of training/competing :)

    Challenge #1: Proofing Startline Stays.

    How far can you go?
    What can you tempt your dog with and still have them hold the stay.
    Handler running 360's around the dog.

    Challenge #2: Pause Table: (can also use a mat if you don't have a table handy).

    Sending: How far away?
    Pancake Downs? How Fast?
    Toys and Treats thrown, dog doesn't break from the Table/Mat.
    Race the dog to the Table/Mat, dog downs, YOU keep running beyond the Table/Mat. Do they stay?

    Challenge #3: Distance Skills and Footwork for Distance.

    Sending to and running around any object i.e bush, tall pylon, water cooler bottle, chair etc (anything as high or higher than the dogs shoulder that you can reach over).

    How far can you send to?
    How fast?
    Front Cross and send to another object?

    And for anyone thinking this is too easy, either post a challenge or I have others for weaves, contacts etc :)
     

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