Obedience and Rally O training

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by Emily, Nov 15, 2012.

  1. Red.Apricot

    Red.Apricot Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2011
    Messages:
    2,984
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Southern California
    I started buckling down on Elsie's heeling last week. When she's on, she's GORGEOUS. But, unfortunately (because I'm lazy) she'd heel reliably for about a minute before wandering.

    So, now I'm working on making heeling super rewarding to her, and on extending the behavior for a lot longer period of time.

    She's already getting snappier.

    Oh and I've been trying to get her to 'spring off the line' as it were, because she was lagging a bit on the first couple steps no matter what else I tried, so I'm trying to make jumping up as soon as I say lets-go (rather than waiting until I've already taken a step) part of the behavior, and so far that's working well, too.

    I'm also actively seeking out more distracting environments for us to practice heeling in, because we both need it.
     
  2. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Midwest
    My response is in red
     
  3. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Midwest
    I imprint with two hands of food and get them pushing into me to get it. Then gradually as they're pushing I lure them to a sit and draw them closer with body language and get to the point I can fade the food lures and both hands at the side and get eye contact before rewarding.

    At first though a lot of just pushing into me and food up close. Later it's a lot of manipulation to get them straight and lots of short, short recalls, like 2 steps and reinforce the up close, straight, eye contact front.
     
  4. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Midwest
    It's a nice routine, but I wouldn't call it oozing with drive by any means. I've seen plenty of IPO dogs that aren't very drivey in OB too, but I wouldn't call that a drivey routine.
     
  5. Sekah

    Sekah The Monster.

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    Messages:
    1,339
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto
    Cohen is my first performance dog, and I'm trying to do a little bit of everything with her. Unfortunately for her, she's my guinea pig -- I'm making loads of first timer mistakes with her. Fortunately for me, she's pretty forgiving. She has her CD and her RA and a leg towards her RE. We've never NQd during an obedience sport run, but I'm a perfectionist and opted to take some time off from competition until I could get a few drive issues sorted out.

    Cohen can get really flat in the ring, so I've been reading a lot about play via Denise Fenzi and I'm planning on taking some private lessons with a new obedience instructor but I haven't made the appointments yet. I think I've fallen into a fairly common trap where I rely too heavily on food and other constant reinforcement so when the motivation isn't there the performance suffers.

    I think I'll not bother taking Cohen any further than her RE since Rally really hasn't done much for me. Rally was a fantastic intro to competition sports in general (we got started when Cohen was ~8 months old or so) but I find it's a bit lackluster as a sport. I like the precision and drive required in obedience, and the exhilaration in agility. I find Rally allows for sloppy performances and I don't want to get accustomed to that. I may go back with Cohen in a few more years once I really get her obedience down, but in the mean time it's on the back burner after RE.
     
  6. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Midwest
    Not saying this is YOU, just a general observation. Food or reward generally isn't a problem. It's a part, but mostly I see people get too serious and try and do too much routine. Do this heeling patter, do that, retrieve to front, doesn't get quite right, back up and make front, then good and food. Over and over.

    Break it up small and short, get the pieces trained, then do them all with play. Nothing is the same and nothing is expected. Keeps the dog guessing and engaged. In the end when pieces are joined together and rewards are held longer the dogs become MORE engaged and push HARDER because they know what gets them the good stuff and it will eventually come, but you have to balance it in the beginning like anything else so you don't make them push too long and check out, but at the same time you have to keep them working and not dependant on food and cues.

    Overall I see people asking for way too much too soon with too much pattern. I think that kills performance overall
     
  7. Sekah

    Sekah The Monster.

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    Messages:
    1,339
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto
    You make some good points. I think for the most part over the last 6 months we've just been working on individual elements, and I've not bothered putting everything into a proper sequence since, well, the last time we were in a comp ring. It's tough to get a handle on how our brief practices are faring, considering the issue was keeping the motivation up throughout the entire exercises. As I said, I'm waiting to see an instructor before I even try putting it all together again. A fresh and experienced pair of eyes will be very helpful.

    I really love teaching the individual exercises too, so Cohen has had an understanding of all the Open and Utility exercises for a good long time now. I think right now though I've focused too much on the mechanics of the exercises rather than the drive required while doing them.

    But don't get me wrong - she's a good little obedience dog. I tend to be pretty hard on myself and like to keep people's expectations low. Makes life easier. :p
     
  8. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Messages:
    886
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    3
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Trust me, the dog is oozing with drive. I've seen him in person. It's harder to see in the video, because you can't see that he's about to jump out of his skin, but his every move is fully engaged. He's a big dog with a long stride, and to keep him precise in that small ring the drive has to be capped, but it is very much there.

    when he goes over the top, he barks
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7_K1Ud92s9s

    So she has to keep him really in check.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2012
  9. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2010
    Messages:
    8,893
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    2 Pit bulls and 2 Malinois, We like to stay busy.
    Location:
    Portland, Oregon
    Home Page:
    He looks fantastic, my biggest gripe about AKC obedience is the inconsistency of hand allowances. I have been told by judges I cannot glue my hand my my stomach, as such. It makes me very uncomfortable not knowing exactly can I can and cannot do with any given judge.
     
  10. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Midwest
    Lots of hip tapping, finger targets and handler help. Didn't realize so much was allowed.
     
  11. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Midwest
    you can tell me it's there, but i see average
     
  12. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Messages:
    886
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    3
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    You can hold your hand at your stomach when you heel, but tensing up and grabbing onto your shirt (which I tend to do) is not preferable. You're supposed to look "natural". So you just hold your hand casually at your waist. Like one so naturally does.

    If any judge tells you differently, they're wrong.
     
  13. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Messages:
    886
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    3
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Fine. I didn't actually say the performance was oozing drive, I said the dog was. I can see the drive in the dog through that performance, but if you can't, show me a video of what you consider a high drive dog in obedience.
     
  14. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Messages:
    886
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    3
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    You can do what you need to do between exercises, as long as it doesn't involve touching the dog.
     
  15. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Midwest
    I can see drive just fine thanks.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lUAAvEXWZOU
     
  16. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Messages:
    2,269
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    several
    Location:
    NE Ohio
    Home Page:
    I tend to agree. The dog seems happy but that's not the same as "oozing with drive".

    I can see where people could get the impression that AKC obedience isn't done in drive. Certainly I see less dogs working in drive at trials than I see dogs working in drive. I think at the upper levels, you see more drivey performances but even at that, there's certainly some rather flat OTCH dogs. I think keeping the dog precise and very up can be an issue and "up-ness" isn't scoreable, so precision is favored.

    Jagger has the best fronts of any dog I have had and I taught him by teaching him to target a piece of duct tape, then sticking it to my shirt, then fading it fairly quickly. I did get quite a bit of bumping early on...ok more like slamming into me when he couldn't stop but he settled into a nice front with some work. Unless he's too excited. I learned to stand very firmly on the recall ;)
     
  17. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Messages:
    886
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    3
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Well, that's a training video, as opposed to competition, so it's not a direct comparison. However, I don't see those dogs exhibiting more drive, except in vocalizing and fidgety performance, which a person would want to avoid in obedience competition. And you can train past them, without squelching the dogs drive, you just have to channel it very specifically, as Petra did with Tyler.
    (when I say "you", I mostly mean people other than myself. I'm not so good at it myself.)
     
  18. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Messages:
    886
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    3
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Again, I didn't say the performance itself was oozing with drive, I said the dog was, and he is. I do see intense drive in that performance, though. Drive isn't just about being fast and twitchy, drive is about being intensely engaged in the task at hand, and he is. Getting a dog with higher drive like that to remain so intensely engaged while also staying precise is difficult, I know, because I haven't been able to do it. So my drivier dog is a terrible obedience dog, she doesn't really engage with it because it's not fast paced enough to keep her. If I was a better trainer, she could be good like that. Instead, she's a fabulous agility dog, with a CD.

    You just don't keep a dog engaged with a heeling pattern this long unless the dog is working in drive.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnBjxHXwLrM
     
  19. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2010
    Messages:
    8,893
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    2 Pit bulls and 2 Malinois, We like to stay busy.
    Location:
    Portland, Oregon
    Home Page:
    I'm not sure how a video of training can be used to compare to drive in an AKC ring.

    The ability to remain "up" and flashy in the AKC ring says a lot to me about a dog, we've see a lot of struggles with several owners, several breeds, and several training methods. It is a challenge and when you see it come together its is something to be admired, IMO.
     
  20. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Midwest

Share This Page