Friday, January 8, 2010

Lots of little training going on....

Well, I have been scratching my head about Breeze's weaves. She was doing so terrifically on them until lately, and now she seemed like she could not get any entrances-she would get into the entrance and not be able to turn to catch the next poles. She was doing really nicely on them with my 24 inch poles at home so I was really concerned she was having back troubles and I might have to just trial her in AKC because they have the 24 inch poles in the trials in my area. USDAA has the 21 inch poles. I took Breeze to Karen's at Contact Point Agility and went to work on the poles there and she was PERFECT and those are 21 in poles, she got some pretty difficult entries. So now I am narrowing this down and I think it is just the weaves at Deanna's class that are causing her trouble. Their base is different and where the feet are on the weaves is sort of funky and now I am thinking that is what is bothering Breeze??? Looking back most of the work I was doing with weaves was with those poles.

Breeze has been doing TONS and TONS of games with the 2o20 position at the end of the dog walk and she is such a champ, I can not get her to mess up, but no matter how many times I back chain, by the time I add in the whole dog walk she is right back to the 4 on the floor. I am about ready to just take it. She is totally doing 4 on the floor with the Aframe and I am VERY happy with it, I feel like it takes a lot of the pressure off her back and hips-which is important because she has dysplasia and I do not want to put a lot of pressure on her shoulders when she already has physical challenges ;-). CONTACTS-(I am throwing my hands in the air as I yell CONTACTS, hahahahaha).

On the plus side of Breeze with her agility....I was trying to put her in the car in her crate at the Contact Point ranch, quite away from the agility yard, but Breeze ran away from me....she would not listen to me at all, she was running for the agility yard! Guess she wanted to play agility! After I did some training with her she ran right to the car and got in her crate by herself, she just was not going to leave without getting her turn to play agility! Guess I have made it fun for her, that makes me happy.

Liz got to practice some herding, and either I have messed her up practicing on my own....highly possible, or she is just not getting the idea of herding, she was pretty distracted the last practice, so it will be good to see what Robin thinks we need to do at our next lesson on Monday. Karen from CP suggested letting Lizzie watch some dogs who are good at herding, which is genius, so I am going to have to find some times that I can get her out to watch dogs.

Cricket got to look at the sheep and she thought that herding sounded marvelous when she was watching Lizzie and me out there, but when she got close to the sheep she was not so sure, LOL. They are big after all. So little Crickie just got a few minuets to check the sheep out, she did not show anything fantastic as far as instinct, but she is very young and she might not be ready to move a flock to and from the fields, LOL, but she did OK.

Ok Naughty Cricket is not the same dog that peered out from that crate at the airport a few months ago. LOL. Have to say that the tiny puppies just sit and stare at you and wonder what can they do to please. Little angel Cricket would never think of blowing me off, or it would never enter her head she might not do what I want. Angel Cricket would get out of her ex-pen and jump wildly at the other dogs, a few things like that but she definitely was an angel.

Sixteen weeks hit and angel puppy left for short priods of time and there is a new pup in her place. This one still follows me most of the time, and she comes barreling when I say COME-but only because I am being very careful when I use that word...Little devil Cricket sometimes looks at me when I want her to do something and weighs her options, hummm, are there treats around?, are there other things that look more fun to do? can I dart in and grab something by mom then dart out? She is very cute, but a little more challenging now. She has lost 4 teeth and is getting some new adult teeth in. So now there are LOTS of containers of treats all over the house-I NEED to convince her I am magic and you never know when I will find treats-you never know when it will pay to listen and she got a cool new drag line for when I know she might choose to not listen, LOL. I can not wait to start her recall class on Sunday which is a great relationship building class working on lots of fun games with recalls.

Sweet Cricket still cuddles with me in the evenings and when there is not better game in town follows me looking like I am the coolest thing on earth and goodness this dog is not at all noise sensitive, and definitely not height sensitive and getting so good at shaping I can put anything down and she just starts trying to figure out how she could make it work. She might not be an angel all the time but she is still so super cute!

One thing we have been doing is lots of interacting and shaping with objects, especially things that might make big noises or do unexpected things. I know this will help her with the teeter and just being comfortable in regular life. I did a video of her playing with a few of her toys.


Diana said...

Cricket is just so cute. She is very clicker savey. Whoohoo! Diana

Sara said...

Sit n spins make noise now? Are the toy companies trying to drive parents nuts?

Cricket is doing great with all her shaping. I'm trying to shape Oreo to get into a box, then a smaller box, then a smaller box.....It is hysterical.

Oreo gets really sensitive about any change in weave poles. He notices if part of the base is not touching the ground completely, etc. He's getting better, but when he misses a pole, I always look at the equipment and usually that was the reason for his mistake.

Kathy said...

that is funny, when I bought the sit n spin at a neighbors yard sale the lady told me that it was going to drive me crazy-I am sure assuming I was buying it for a kid, and it does play a lot of music and it is LOUD!!!

Sam said...

I'm starting to think that a 4 on the floor A-Frame contact might be the way to go. Marge just cannot put the brakes on to stop after going over the A-Frame and winds up slamming her body into the ground. I'd go with a regular running but I'm just worried because I know it takes so long to train, and some trainers even say it's nearly impossible to train a totally successful running contact.

Having a lesson on Monday to figure it all out - will let you know how it goes!

Ricky the Sheltie said...

Gosh you are good at giving Cricket all kinds of new experiences - it is so cool to see her interacting with all that stuff with no hesitation or fear. I am really looking forward to hearing about your recall class since you know that is one of out priorities at the moment.

Sam said...

Thanks for the info, Kathy. Will let you know how the lesson goes on Monday and what my instructor says about it. I'm willing to give 2o2o another shot if there's a way for her to do it more comfortably. It's such a big decision!!

Morganne said...

What a great idea! (loved the video). I think I'm going to buy noisy toys for my Sheltie puppy.

Ricky the Sheltie said...

Thank you for the comment you left about building up speed on the dogwalk by using a plank and jumps! If the snow ever melts, we'll try that! I really appreciate your advice!

Here is the YouTube tutorial about training backwards circle -

We modified this method a little (like the books didn't work for me because I wanted to do 2o2o on them so we used a little table). We used a couch behind us and tables on the sides.