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.
If you are an agility nerd like us and many that we know, you will be keen to watch the Brits take on our beloved sport at their most prestigious dog show – Crufts!
The top of the pops! Crufts! Even Royalty are getting in on the agility scene!
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!
In the last couple of months, Jaxon & I have become absolute Agility Nerds. Pretty much now we have a structured training week, and we have as much fun as possible during the week, then celebrate by hanging out with the pack at Club & putting practice to purpose.
In following lots of puppies all over the world, and learning lots about many different styles, handling methods and simply having lots of doggy fun, I’ve noticed a lot of doggies in the snow.
If you met Jaxon at a trial, you would think he’s a yapper (sad face). However, if you met him at home, you’d be surprised at how quiet he is.
I certainly thought he was such a quiet one that we’d have to encourage him to speak up sometimes.
One of the early tricks I taught Jaxon was to “Speak”. I watched a TV program about dogs that perform on TV, and thought Jaxon would make a great TV dog (no offers yet).
The thing that made me think was the fact the trainer was getting the dog to do certain actions at a distance.
Eventually, “Speak” became a trick that worked 2-fold. It got Jaxon to speak up, and it taught him not to bark at us other times.
In the top nosh doggie arenas, a new sport has clinched the attention of those normally snooty and rather aloof show-dog types.
This week, Westminster Kennel Club (New York City) dog show held their first ever master’s agility trial! Hooray for agility taking the world by storm!
This week we’ve been challenging ourselves with lots of foundation training for agility. While that’s fun, I’ve really wanted to put some variety into our daily sessions to give Jaxon lots of fun and keep him challenged.
This week we’re training on a different surface everyday. With our daily training, I like to keep it short and fun for Jaxon, keeping it to 5 minutes at each end of the day. I train these sessions at mealtimes so I have Jaxon’s attention.