We were back at our utility class tonight. The good news - Jackson did really well on the signals and the articles. We did two sets of signals and both times he paid attention - even with the instructor he worries about standing right behind him. I think the 'tough love' is working. He's paying much better attention and I think he realizes that avoidance is not an option. The articles went well also. We're keeping the number of articles down to four and he went right to work and got the correct articles quickly. We did the glove exercise too. His pivots and retrieves were good for all three gloves.
I was really pleased with the way things were going, however, I noticed early on that he seemed to be limping a little and it got more noticeable as the class continued. That is the bad news. We didn't do the directed jump exercise because of it. I think we'll take it easy for the next couple days and see if that helps. Since this appears to be a recurring issue, I'm also going to check with some folks at the club where I train to get referrals to some specialist that deal with 'sports' injuries for dogs. Maybe it's time to get a specialist's opinion on what may be causing the problem.