Saturday, August 23, 2008

Agility Class

Last class, we worked on handling skills just with jumps. I think Katrin called it double box jumps? Something like that. I know there were jumps arranged in squares.

The first sequence had a switch in there. Switch is still the hardest thing for me to get. Direction changes, lead changes, treats, hands, dogs, my own two feet...

I'm pretty sure there was a front cross in there somewhere after the switch, but Iris and I never got that far. Iris had no problem taking the first three jumps but after the third jump, she was spinning around to the right instead of turning toward the left. Actually, I think she should have started turning left before the third jump, which was part of the problem. She had to turn right after the second jump and just continued that motion over the third. Sandy and Sadie went after us, and I tried to really watch what she was doing with her hands. I know that's where I was losing Iris. She just didn't know what I wanted. I think I have a better idea of what I should be doing (so much easier to say than do!) I keep meaning to set up Iris' jumps to practice, but I've been a lazy trainer this week.

Next we worked on front crosses. A front cross is when the handler's path crosses the dog's path in front of the dog (until recently, I thought it was when the dog crosses in front of the handler, so there's my clarification). It wasn't pretty, but we did pull it off. The handler's path in these diagrams is really generalized, but you get the idea.

The last sequence was almost the same as the second, but the hander had to stay on the outside while the dog did the jumps in the middle. Katrin held Iris at the start line not because Iris has been breaking her stays, but because I worry too much about her breaking her stays. And I was not cooler than dirt that night.

So we started. Iris did all three of the first jumps perfectly. And then I stopped. And Iris stopped. Katrin says, "You have no idea where you're going because you didn't think she'd do it." Nope! I didn't bother to plan ahead because I really thought that Iris would come in towards me, and we'd end up working on that. Serves me right! My good girlie.

I did, however, manage to go the entire class without being told to deliver the treat with my other hand.


ann-and-partner said...

Such smart girls!!!

Jules said...

hahaha!! Good job with the treats! I love the diagrams too. Makes it so much easier to "see" what you are talking about.

It appears that you are both makeing great progress!

Blue said...

I had to learn use Adobe Illustrator to make maps at work, which it turns out is also a great program for drawing agility courses. :-) I understand things so much better with pictures!