Sunday, June 29, 2008

Practice: weaves and "pip"

Used canned food to reward the weaves today. Started with 12-wams a few times. Then did a couple of passes on the 6-fixed, then 8, then one pass on 10. No popping, but he's not single striding the whole way so probably I should keep him on the wams only for a while? It's just so annoying having to raise the poles after every pass on the wams since he practically flattens them every time. Bad lazy handler! Would channel weaves also help in the footwork department? maybe we'll try that too.

A few weeks ago I introduced a new verbal to Walter. It means turn 180 away from me (and take the obstacle if one is there). Called it "pip" just cause I think I heard some people using that word as a command for something at a recent trial and it sounds different from all our other commands and I'm just not very creative. The sort of thing we'll use for contacts to snaked-under tunnels on the far side and for flip-aways on gambles, etc. Well in theory anyway. So after working it on the flat for a few weeks, today we tried it out with equipment for the first time. Started with just a straight tunnel, walking alongside it then when we reach the entrance, "pip". Seemed to work! Later on we tried it with the snaked-under tunnel and dogwalk. There was also a jump in front of the dogwalk as a decoy. He was a bit confused, sometimes taking the jump, but at the end I think it was starting to click.

Didn't get a chance to practice "out" since it was hot and Walter's heat tolerance isn't great (his brain melts) which forces me to keep his practices nice and short!

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