Keeping any dog or puppy happy and healthy takes a lot of interaction, fun, and consistency.
Our little Papillon, Jaxon, is a very lucky pup in the sense that there’s usually someone around at home with him. He’s not often alone for extended periods, and gets great garden, play & walk time with us humans.
It’s so great to hear when teams of dogs and people get their Agility groove.
Recently, we’ve had a lot of our friends & members of the NSDTC Agility Club with great success in the rings, getting their first titles, and gaining lots of new awards and qualies.
Not all of them were gun dogs – quite a few different breeds out there winning in the rings!
Congratulations to all of those who gained new titles or added qualies in February! It’s been a hard and fast start to the year.
With a dog in a family of different people, and where one person in particular is the trainer, it can be very hard to get any synergy with training style.
I often tell my dear husband off for teaching Jaxon lots of bad things – such as chasing birds in the back yard.
A small divergence this week from our normal workout routine!
This week I’ve tried to surprise Jaxon with a bunch of different training to keep him interested, teach him new things, and just have some plain old fun!
I’m beginning to think that I should re-name these sections “Self-discovery Monday”!
While the intention was to blog about a bunch of things we’re learning as a team, I’m finding more and more that I’m the one who needs to do a lot of learning.
A couple of weeks back, I wrote a blog post about patience and finding our inner Zen for agility. Today I’m finding I’m more and more reflecting on that lesson & taking it to the next level.
Do you remember those Choose Your Own Adventure books? I loved those stories and would read them over again and again. What I liked most about them was the unexpected rewards you got at every choice. Dogs love that kind of reward system too. Positive behaviour and reinforcement is best displayed when the dog is making their own choices from the outset.
This week we’ve been working on good choices for Jaxon. I realised that rewarding him with food wasn’t really putting the value of the relationship into me, but into the food.
A little while back, Jaxon & I attended summer Agility Camp with Canine Fun Sports.
It was a fun time, but the middle of Summer really got us, and one day in particular was close to 40 degrees right up to 6pm in the evening!
Well the best thing about Agility Camp is the great group of people who are there – and their fabulous dogs.
I’ve been trying to record more training with Jaxon so that I can review my handling, and see what I’m doing OK at, and how I can improve.
This week, we’ve been practicing a few OneMind Dog moves. The first one I tried was the Twist. I’m still slow and working through learning the move, so Jaxon has been very patient with me!
It’s a big thing to look inside yourself and recognise the ways you can grow and better yourself. Not a lot of people do this, and I think I’ve found the secret.
Owning a dog, and doing a dog sport – agility – has helped me really reflect on who I am and how I can better myself. This comes through the constant learning and growing together as a team.