Monday, April 30, 2007

April 2007

(Backfilled in October 2009 due to impending closure of Geocities)

Saturday April 28th 2007 - Fun Match (Dogz at Sunset Farms riding stables, indoors on horse-pooped-on sand)

The good:

  • he held every contact even though I ran a couple of metres past them

  • no problems with the 12-weaves except for the first run when he popped at the second last pole (the entries were easy, basically head-on). rewarded with game of tug.

  • no signs of nervousness on the dogwalk when it followed the snaked-under tunnel although I stepped a meter or two past the tunnel and gave him a treat before turning him around onto the dogwalk

  • nice flow throughout except for the opening of the first two runs and a couple of horse-poop-sniffing moments

  • some nice rear crosses over jumps

  • he crated well in Lucy's crate, in the main area adjacent to the ring. A sheet was draped over to block his view and keep him quiet. Time to get a good-sized soft crate for him which will make set-up and take-down a lot easier.

The not-so-good/needs-more-work:

  • the first two starts Walter decided to make up his own opening, must have thought I was pointing to the wrong jump. So I used a target after the first jump and by the third and fourth runs he was back on track.

  • a couple of horse-poop-investigating moments but nothing too bad.

The bizarre:

  • once at a tunnel snaked under the frame, he turned around midway in the tunnel and came back out the entry. He never does that; best I can figure is he paused to sniff some interesting scent inside the tunnel, then got confused about which way was which and chose the wrong way.

Monday April 9th 2007 - practice

Following on something Lucy and I are learning in obedience, Walter is learning "mark" which will be incorporated into our start line. So, rather than us running off the start with him looking at me and then having to look around to find the first obstacle, he'll already be looking ahead to it. This should reduce the chance of a dropped bar or worse, a collision with the first obstacle! Our home-made jump is coming in handy for this. Also, a few days ago started to teach "turn", the opposite of "around", using a music stand in the living room, and he's got it down now. Next steps will be to do both "turn" and "around" in the same session and to reduce the size of the prop, say to a can of tomato soup! Not strictly agility-related but I may try using this as one way of working on challenging weave entries... I read an article about it somewhere, but darned if I can find it now...