Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Tuesday's class

At least today's class started out better than last week's! Mom didn't have to get all mad at me because I was less sniffy and a little more focused. Was that because class was about forward motion front crosses? Who knows. We reviewed FMFC at the jump and on the flat.

Some random thoughts: beginning agility dogs need to be taught not to go past the handler's outside arm (inside arm sends forward but outside arm signals a turn). I was taught at first with a mish-mash of ideas so I never learned to not go behind mom or to turn with her outside arm. An exercise on the flat is to have your dog walk in a straight line next to you and you have a treat in your outside hand and the dog never goes past your outside hand. Also a handler needs to be very clear to always go past the plane of a jump to do a FMFC (the shoulder turn and the outside arm can begin on the take-off side of the jump but the cross is performed past the plane of the jump). This is important so that the dog does not confuse the FMFC with the backy uppy. With the backy uppy, the handler stays on the take-off side of the jump and motions the dog over the jump and back next to her. (confusing to write this out). And last, the shoulder turn is the most important part of the FMFC (even more than the outside arm).

(If anybody thinks we got any of this information wrong, please always let us know!)

We did a sequence where we had the aframe and then a jump almost straight ahead but we had to jump from the back side of it and that was tough! The handlers had to get ahead and keep an eye on the dog to call the dog around to the back with a FMFC on the flat and then over the jump.

Jenn put the chute out for me to practice before my trial this weekend. I am happy to report that I went through it all three times (the first time with a little hesitation and the second and third times no hesitation at all)! Jenn suggested that mom make the barrel part of my chute here at home look different. So we came home and mom really tried to disguise it - boxes, a chair, sandpaper in the barrel, my bath tub mat in the barrel(she thought that would scare me since I only see that mat at bath times), a dark sheet, a pool noodle - nothing she did affected me at all!

(Sorry about the poor video - mom even let the camera tilt down half-way through and cut off part of the picture. )

Any way, mom believes now that my problem is not the chute at all but just a lack of confidence at trials or in new environments. So we have to do more of our training challenges and just hope that our confidence grows!

Gotta zoom!



Diana said...

LOL, great idea about the chute. Ricky did really well. Good for you. Im so glad class went better this week. Diana

Sara said...

That was the funniest video ever! I laughed at each new "disguise". There's no fooling you Ricky! Boy, your mom must have brought half the house outside to try make the chute look different. I bet you were looking at her like she was nuts!

Sara said...

I had to go back and watch it again, beacuse it was so entertaining the first time. LOL.

Kathy said...

WOW, those were some FANTASTIC chutes!!!! Very clever to disguise it and zero in on the problem, maybe it is the loss of connection in the chute at trials when he is nervous??? I would LOVE to see the exercise on video with the treat and the outside hand if you get time sometime, sounds like something I really need to make sure Cricket has down. As usual I love your classes, LOL, I get so much out of them and I dont have to cut up treats before them, hahahahahah, so thanks! We are trialing on Saturday too, so hopefully there are lots of good trial vibes floating all around the country this weekend, LOL.

Sagira said...

Good job! I look foward to meeting you Ricky. We need to get a photo together for our blogs. Good luck this weekend. What height do you jump? I'm in the 20 class with all the border collies, AHHH!

Sam said...

Haha, I love seeing unique training ideas. I would have NEVER thought of disguising the chute! Great little video!

Do you have access to agility matches in your area where you can do the chute a bazillion times and give lots of cookies?

Morganne said...

Great description of the FMFC! I enjoy the summary of your classes with Jenn.

Love the chute! But it makes sense that it's not a chute per se but lack of confidence in the trial environment (which is very stressful. I can tell my dogs stress too - Sage yawns at the start line).

Marie said...

Wow! I think your mom brought out everything but the kitchen sink to disguise you chute. I'm so glad that none of it fooled you!

As always I look forward to your Tues. classes. I'm really glad your class went better for you this week. :-)

Khyra And Sometimes Her Mom said...

Khlaim woo were khrazy from the heat and humidity?


Lian said...

Love the video and love all the ideas! Ricky you are so funny!

Priscilla said...

Ricky, you're so funny and cute. Your mom is such a wonderful mom who is so clever and always has those wonderful ideas.