17 December 2010

Handling 2

Please read the last post first, this is a follow on assuming the same sequence. This is a blind cross I've decided to teach Seri. The approach to the 2nd jump starts out the same as the last way, where I deliberate begin to push the dog's takeoff to the left side of the jump so that she will jump from left to right on an angle.
As I get close enough to the jump, I turn to face her and bring up my right arm. The initial step of this is to keep the arm down near me to call her in to me. Once she gets close, and I am in position - blocking half the jump, basically - I lift my right arm give her the cue to jump. It's a bit of an arm motion, up and back, with the shoulder somewhat involved. It is an obvious, irrefutable cue to jump. My positioning blocking half the jump tells the dog to wrap around me, and thus the jump wing.

The dog lands and I pick her up on the left side and move on. Because this cue ALWAYS means to wrap the jump wing (me), it is ALWAYS a pull-through maneuver, and she should never take the other jump when I do this. So far in training, she is doing this very well. Once she understands the cue, and I get my positioning right every time, I should be able to cue it and begin running immediately again.

Previously wraps and pull-through's have been difficult with Seri, not because she won't do them, but because she has a lot of trouble keeping the bars up and turning tightly. These 2 handling styles (new to me, but I certainly did not create them) seem to help both these issues tremendously, and I have some hope for our future!

8 comments:

Sarah Duke said...

Thanks for the detailed explanations! Makes lots of sense. I like how you are using the blind cross to cue a very specific turn only, that's the way I see that move being used successfully. Great posts.

Amy Siegel said...

Doesn't this require that you take your eyes off the dog just as you want her to come through the gap?

Rosanne said...

Amy, yeah i guess so. I'm not a big proponent of staring at the dog all the time anyway. I believe even on a regular pull-through I should be able to leave as the dog lands, and the direction and motion of my body should pull them through. If i want the other jump, I will stand there a second longer, open my shoulder towards it, use an arm cue, and push the dog out.
Even with the blind cross, usually when the dog has landed I can see them peripherally pretty quickly. This is not a manuever I would recommend if you can't get to the jump ahead of your dog in any given sequence, and timing and positining is important as if it's done wrong the dog may start guessing when to do it.

Amy Siegel said...

I didn't mean stare. But you are right on the timing. You really can't turn away until you are sure the dog has turned it's head in your direction. If the dog hasn't turned it's head toward you enough, they still might think about taking the other jump. I know Flirt would. So the timing...it's really everything.

Rosanne said...

My dogs are trained to assume the pull-through, not the 180, and in the course of my normal handling I would rotate quickly and move away as they are jumping the jump. I should not have to wait for anything. But I specifically train these things, because they aren't easy, and my dogs are fast. If I am waiting here, I am not going to make it somewhere else. All my cues to wrap are given prior to takeoff.

Amy Siegel said...

How do you train that? The assumption thing?

How's the teaching thing going? What are you doing with all your free time? Sleeping pattern change yet?

Jane Elene Christensen said...

You are going to love that handling style Rosanne! It is so easy and gives a course so much more flow when you use it the right places.

@Amy: My dog has a natural flair for tight turns so she will never take the other jump. But if I train the blind cross specificly to get an even tighter turn I at first place the reward very close to the side of the wing. With time I through a toy in the the new direction... towards obstacle number one. Just an explanation from a european ;o). Do you agree Rosanne? ;o)

Rosanne said...

Yes, even when I'm training a regular front cross or turn where the dog must come through, I start by rewarding very close to the wing of the jump. I even train rear crosses that way at first. I really want my dog to check my motion and direction of travel all the time, and never assume anything.