Weave woes

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by Laurelin, Jun 20, 2013.

  1. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    Just Miss Lucy-fur, my wondermutt!
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    Aww :( Go cuddle your dogs, realize that we all hit rough patches, and start again tomorrow. Or the next day. Or next week, or whenever you have the desire again.

    If it means anything, I think you're a pretty impressive trainer. You have two VERY different dogs, and you're able to be successful with both of them.
     
  2. DenoLo

    DenoLo New Member

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    We've never done 2x2's, we started off with channels- but couldn't quite get them closed all the way. (I had the same trouble as you too, where it was tough to get her to stay in the channels-- we had to go with 4 targets to start off with). After a while it became pretty clear that we weren't going to get them closed all the way, so we just went with shaping. I still move along them with her though. I do think weaves are tougher for little dogs-- all the other dogs in our classes had no trouble at all.

    By that point though, she sort of had the idea that she was supposed to do something involving the poles, so she caught on to the shaping super fast.
     
  3. BostonBanker

    BostonBanker Active Member

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    Vodka soaked gummy bears. That's what agility people do.

    Also, Mia hasn't self-destructed. You are clearly a wonderful trainer. I'm not sure many of us could have made that happen.
     
  4. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    Haha well we went to this dog thing and they were brats. :eek:

    I am glad to know it's not just my little dogs! I do think the bigger dogs 'see' the channels better. If that makes any sense.
     
  5. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    I want vodka soaked gummy bears.... that sounds yummy.
     
  6. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    I think in general it's a little easier for the bigger (non-toy) dogs to establish a stride rhythm, too. Webby's small but he can still double-stride the weave poles. Kim and Mira can single-stride them. The very little guys often have to take multiple steps through the poles and while they do establish their rhythm it seems to be more complicated in some ways.

    They will figure it out, though :)
     
  7. DenoLo

    DenoLo New Member

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    I feel like there's a lot more steps in between each pole too so it's easier for them to pop out.

    I'm not sure if it's a little dog thing or just a Lola thing, but she's also so close to the ground that she sees EVERY little tiny thing on the ground. If somebody drops like a microscopic crumb on the ground, she sees it :rofl1:
     
  8. sassafras

    sassafras mushinois

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    Just a question from an ignoramus - are the weave poles exactly the same regardless of the dog/breed? Like, the number of them and how far apart from each other they are?
     
  9. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    Yup. 24" spacing in all venues as far as I know. 6 poles for novice dogs, 12 for the rest.
     
  10. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    AAC has 12 for starters more often than 6.
     
  11. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    I agree that I'd first review the sending concept with the dogs. Get them fast, excited and solid with sending to a food bowl at least 15' away from you before doing any more weave training. If you can't send your dog forward, teaching weaves with any method will be more challenging.

    Then, I'd probably take a different approach. I'd set up "channels" of other things and practice sends that way. Still no actual weaves. So set up an expen a couple feet from a wall to make a long chute and work on your sends there. If they don't get it right away, move closer to the food bowl in the chute. You might have to get really close to the target at first, then gradually work your way back. When the dog has mastered that, try it in a different location. Or with different barriers. Experiment with how narrow it the channel can be. This both teaches the dog the idea and takes the pressure off this being the serious business of teaching agility ;) Really though, it allows you to teach the concept of running down a chute without having to worry that you're going to mess up on a behavior that is more important to you. Easier on the dog and the handler!

    I really think if you spend a few weeks working on that stuff the channel weaves will work just fine for you. Your dogs probably just don't understand what they are supposed to do with this obstacle and may need some more work on forward focus/sending. Once your dogs are good on the non-weaving chutes, set up a weave chute wider than you think you need and give it a try. If they don't send through it, do what you did with the non-weaving chute - move down closer to the target. You may start with sending from just the first two or four poles to the target (or you could set up a 4 pole chute) then gradually work your way back.

    And don't feel bad about where your dogs are in training. Savvy still doesn't have totally solid weaves because...well weaves are probably my least favorite thing to train so I tend to not work on them as much as I should. It's just more fun to work on wraps and sequences and contacts and tricks and heeling and...and.... I was just thinking tonight that I really need to devote some time every day to working on weaves with him :) I use a combination of WAMs and channels and have dabbled in 2x2. I think I'm a bit too ADD for 2x2s LOL I've tried, really I have but it just doesn't hold my interest past Day 3 or so. It does seem to me that 2x2s work best for very toy driven dogs (and maybe for handlers who are very organized and systematic in their approach to training). I'm not really a fan of adding guides to channels because then you have to wean them off of those while also getting them to do straight poles. It works for some people/dogs though. You can find people who've successfully trained weaves with all variety of methods for sure.
     
  12. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    Well your in good company because I am pretty sure we have all felt like that at one time or another.

    Did you know that 15 yrs ago the general consensus was that it took AT LEAST a year or more to train a dog to weave? Recently because of some methods, that time frame has been shortened to a scary short period of time for those that have the experience or have a trainer that can help them do that.
    The bad part about the successes of some to get those stellar weaves so fast is that some folks might feel pressured or a failure when they struggle with weave training or it takes longer. Imo, it still takes the average first time agility handler and dog a year (give or take a bit) to learn weaves. And that means being dedicated to teaching weaves with no long breaks in between.

    Training weaves is HARD and probably one of the easiest obstacles to mess up on because of the frustrations. Good news is there is a light at the end of the tunnel (pardon the pun), they can be fixed.

    BB is right there is no one way and it would be in the handlers best interest to have a good understanding of each method before deciding which method to use. But that isn't always an option either for some :)

    I personally love 2x2's for me and my dogs..........but I do own full sets of channels, WHAM, 2x2's and straight poles to either train or solve problems for myself or students :)
     
  13. k9krazee

    k9krazee Active Member

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    I've used sections of mesh garden fencing* cut in 4ft (?) sections and knee high. Then I added round shower curtain rings on the edges so they slide over the poles. The sections are flexible and big enough that it doesn't create a tight channel so they aren't relying on the guide but it does make it the success rate very high.

    I keep the entrance one up for a long time but the middle pieces can be removed or alternated early on.

    *[​IMG]

    I have switched to wire guides (metal coat hangers unwound -- lol --- but don't really recommend it.
     
  14. Kyllobernese

    Kyllobernese Member

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    When I started weaves with Remmy, they were closer together but now they are at 24 inches it took him a while to get the rhythm, I also found I was having trouble getting him to hit the first pole until someone on the internet advised me to act like there was another pole before the first one and that worked as I had kept pushing him toward the second pole.

    With Lucy, I am training her with the channel. I have not closed it up completely yet as she was not really old enough so just practiced running the channel. I am not good at throwing straight so what I ended up doing was putting her fuzzy with the treat in it at the end of the channel, walking back with her and sending her down the channel. I have had the channel closed up enough that she is starting to give a bit of a wiggle but I am looking forward to moving another step ahead.
     
  15. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    Izzie learned with 2x2s and me throwing her goodie container. She did well with that. Then I sharpened them up with gates over the winter as I really wanted a way to make her extremely successful and solidify her job. Her weaves are pretty good and they're fast and accurate unless I'm stressy. She's a sensitive gal.

    Small dog tip: Know where your feet are. That's what your tiny dogs are largely going to see and follow, much moreso than your upperbody/arms.
     
  16. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    That's a great tip and exactly what helped fix my medium size dog weave entrances.
     
  17. ForestPhin

    ForestPhin New Member

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    weave progress?

    Hi there,

    I'm new here! :) Was reading through this thread and wondering where the OP is at and if she was able to get any video of their progress?

    I think Aleron nailed it--the dogs need to understand the concept of how to drive away from you first before you can really train this specific skill. Driving away from you is essential in agility handling as well so its an important skill to have. I also love the ex-pens idea--very smart!!!

    I have dogs with very good (my 1st agility dog) and awesome (my 2nd dog) weaves. My first dog was only trained on channels in the beginning. He did okay with them, but never understood the concept of difficult entries. I did go back once I got more educated and added in some 2x2 work and it definitely improved his entries. My younger dog has excellent, independent weaves, I was complimented on them just last week! I trained him using both 2x2s and channels.

    The 2x2s develop the concept of how to enter from ANY direction, and the channels teach them to DRIVE with speed down all the way to the end.

    I also think WAMs are good for footwork if you can get your hands on some, but they're not the only tool I'd use.

    Personally, I am not a fan of the guides, though I know some people who have said they help smaller dogs... I dunno, I dont like anything that has a "prop" you have to fade.

    My disclaimer--I have taught foundation agility classes--and I will say that 2x2s were an extremely difficult concept for my students to grasp. And this was over the course of me teaching them for at least a year! Your timing of the marker (clicker/verbal) and reward delivery has to be excellent to really make it stick. That said, I dont think you should give up. Slow it down, and like others have said, I think lumping and not sticking with one method may be the problem. That Mary Ellen-Barry article is very good, I would be sure to download that if you have not already. I also think a private lesson if you can swing it is a good idea.

    Am interested in an update and/or any video if you have it! :)
     
  18. MafiaPrincess

    MafiaPrincess Obvious trollsare Obvious

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    Laurelin.. How are your weaves now? Improving or taking a training hiatus on them? I took a break with Arson for a bit as I too was getting frustrated.
     
  19. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    Honestly I gun it up for a few months. Initially I jut wanted to wait till after the trial but ended up going longer. Restarted them with my new trainer and slightly tweaked channel weaves. We've only done 3 sessions in class and 1 at the park. It's been so hot outside that I don't want to do much till the girls are not complaining about the heat so much. Lol

    I got guides but haven't used them yet.
     
  20. MafiaPrincess

    MafiaPrincess Obvious trollsare Obvious

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    I swear I'm not stalking you today. I just haven't been forum active and you've posted stuff I actually wanted to read ;)

    How's the new trainer working out?
     

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