Thursday, June 12, 2014

Pre-Agility: Week 2

Week 1
Week 3
Week 4
Week 5
Week 6

The weather held out so we had agility class tonight at Dog-Gone Fun in Kernersville.

We did some review with the tunnel. Buster didn't do as well as he should have because I didn't give the right signals. But he did go through it enthusiastically once he knew that's what I wanted and that's what counts, that he has fun.

Today we were introduced to the tire and the chute.
Agility Tire

Agility chute

The tire was lowered until it was barely off the ground. So I just put Buster in a sit-wait, walked to the other side of the tire and called him through. Again, he came to me enthusiastically.

I thought the chute might be scary, afterall, it's closed at one end. You can't see where you're going. But we put our dogs on one end, then went over, lifted the chute up so they could see us and called them through. Buster came right through and even when the chute was down on the ground (as pictured above) he ran through it blindly. I was so proud of him. My baby is fearless!

We ended by doing some contact work on the A-Frame. It's important that their paws touch certain parts of the equipment for safety and so they don't get disqualified.
As we started this, a light rain started, so we hurried through and went on our way.

Before we left, Buster and I signed up for an Agility Foundations Workshop. It's 2 hours and we'll learn "backing up/backing onto an object, step onto/circle an object, beginning shadow handling, flat work, acceleration & deceleration." I hope this will help us advance faster and give us an edge. My goal is to participate in the June 2015 Triad Dog Games.

(Buster already knows the command "back up"; we learned it the last day of Advanced Obedience. We practice that one a lot. It's very useful.)

There's a lot about agility that confuses me. Some of the terminology is confusing, especially regarding cross-overs and handling and whatnot. When I was at the Triad Dog Games I saw teams go on some equipment more than once during their run. There was a confusing mixed-up pathway. Why is it all mixed up? Does someone give the participants specific instructions about what path to take in the course?
The description for the Agility 2 class at Buster's school says: " Handlers and dogs will learn how to maneuver serpentines, threadles, wraps, 270′s, lead out pivot’s/reverse flow pivots and layering of obstacles. " I don't understand ANYTHING in that sentence. (I'm sure I'm gonna read this post in the future and think I was dumb for being confused.)

Stayed tuned for Week 3 (halfway done) next week, if the weather holds. Hope there's no midterms!

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