Saturday, April 11, 2009

Fun & Games videos

We practiced some of our fun and games exercises this afternoon at the club and managed to get a couple short video clips of what we're working on. We've been working on Jackson running through my legs the past couple weeks. When we first started, he was reluctant to put his head between my legs to get a treat. That was Step 1 of the learning to weave. Now he is going through my legs after a treat without hesitation - Step 2. The next step is to weave in and out through my legs. We haven't got that far yet, but here's the 'through the legs' clip.

He is such a worrier when it comes to performing some of the utility exercises - especially with distractions - but he really appears to enjoy doing these fun things and is not stressed. In addition to this being a fun, stress reducing exercise, I think it's also going to help his recalls by keeping his speed up as he gets close to me.

The second fun and games exercise we're learning is raising his front feet on cue. He caught on real fast raising his right foot, so now I'm trying to get him to learn the cues for raising the right foot and the left foot. The next video clip is our beginning training for this game.

We also got in some utility work along with the fun and games. We've been trying to build confidence and speed with the articles, so I've been losing the formality lately and praising him and encouraging him a lot more. Can't do that in the trial, but maybe we can build confidence and get him more relaxed in practice and it will carry over into the ring. The big improvement lately has been getting him to trot back to me with the article instead of walking in slowly.


doberkim said...

he's adorable!!!!!! you've given me a lot of ideas for my little one, who is so serious in the ring - i think im going to try to teach her to weave in and out of my legs and a high five for in the ring! how tall are you? my male dobe is HUGE but im only just barely over 5 feet, so im not sure weaving with him is feasible :)

in terms of articles - have you considered directly sending him instead of doing in a turn and sit? for some dogs it just seems demotivating.

the other thing you can do to get more speed is to give him a little butt scoot on the way out (if you've ever done that before on a retrieve at all), and then run away once he starts coming in with the article.

Kathie R said...

Thanks for the comments and suggestions. I have thought about sending him without a sit - in fact one time I had a judge in the ring ask me if I had considered that! I might try that sometime to see how he would do with it. And, I do sometimes run away to speed him up. Lately, I've been increasing the distance and that seems to be helping.

Oh, btw, I'm 5'8", and I never thought about having him run through my legs until I saw a Great Dane do free style with her owner who is 5'2" :) Let me know how it goes!

The PR Gang said...

Looks like he's having some fun now!

Jennifer H. said...

Love, love, love these videos!! Jackson is so very handsome and he looks so pleased with himself. :)

Allison (Dog Mom) said...

Grrreat job, Jackson!! Yur weeving iz lookin gud. Arr mommee hazn't tryd dis wif Waldo yet, cuz she iz afrayd dat he will git stuck between hur legz!!

Gus and Waldo