30 September 2011

Weave WTF

Went through the usual drill this morning - up at 6:20am so i can get to Fair Hill just as the sun comes up for a nice 50-60min walk with Drifter and Kiba. It was cooler than it has been this morning, which was nice. Drifter and Kiba were barely panting at all and I felt we could have gone longer, but my sneakers got wet and I was in a spot where if I kept going it would take a long time to loop back around, so I just made a U-turn and went back the way I came. I enjoy exploring trails, and I'm still working out which loops are doable within 50-90min of walking. I did come across this cool old broken down bridge, just past a "Trail Closed" sign. (I only went past the sign because I could see the bridge).

This afternoon after lunch and a trip to Barnes and Noble with DJ, I got Strafe out to do some more weaves and dogwalks. I actually dislike this age of puppy training, because he's finally old enough to start working on all the obstacles, and i want to get them finished as soon as possible, but that means I have to neglect all the fun handling exercises we used to work on when all he could do was low jumps... anyway Strafe's been doing great on his 2-by-2 weaves, they are only open about 6" or so, and I've been working on mild entries because he was having trouble with a couple angles. Well today I decided to close the poles a little more, and Strafe promptly reminded me that he is still a young adolescent, by completely forgetting what weave poles are. . . I had to make them easier and even then he had trouble. He's a bit of a softy and when he's wrong, he does bounce back but if he's been wrong a few times in a row he needs some encouragement - he'll work but he slows down and looks concerned. So I gave that up for a bad job and went over to the dogwalk, and as usual his back-chaining work is just absolutely brilliant. His work from a standing start in front of the plank is also absolutely brilliant. But if do jump-jump-dogwalk he loses it. So then i tried something different - instead of placing the toy out, I held it, and ran back and forth next to him. Well that looked brilliant! Without the toy ahead of him he isn't going balls to the wall crazy, he just runs nicely. Not sure what to think of that, but I think for now I'll start sticking the dogwalk into real sequences and see how he handles it. If he is perfectly consistent with me just running and no "lure" placed out, then we'll roll with it. My only fear with this behavior is that when he gets to a trial he may get "silly" and run more like he does with a placed toy, then he does at home. But we'll see. He's not an over the top dog....

"weaves are dumb!"

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