Saturday, October 6, 2012

Tunnel Jump Relays

Yesteday I set up my tripod and took video of Pepper and Maxie doing Tunnel Jump Relays --  comparing the first attempts of a puppy with my seasoned agility dog.  Audrey came along as a second trainer.  This was Pepper's first attempt, Audrey's first crack at dog training, and Maxie hasn't done this in over a year.  Pepper's performance was sporadic. 

The most imortant things I learned are that
  • Pepper values boiled chicken liver treats more than gizzard treats.  After I switched to liver treats, he came to me more readily.  I had given Audrey the liver treats because they break up more easily, and because I can put the gizzard treats in my mouth (I love gizzards).
  • Pepper will have no trouble jumping12", though we'll continue to practice mostly 8" until he's older.
  • Pepper needs a lot of flatwork at home before doing much sequencing.
  • Maxie has forgotten how to do the exercise spontaneously,without any direction like he used to do.  We'll have to work on that.
If I hadn't been so anxious to capture this relay on video in the short time allotted, I would have backchained the exercise first -- straight tunnel, slightly curved tunnel, deeply curved tunnel, add one jump, then the second jump.  Pepper started doing straight and slightly curved tunnel relays at about 4 months.  But I was in a hurry to assess Pepper's ability to sequence before Beginners class begins next week.  My bad. After practicing a few more weeks, I'll take another video, hopefully with better results. It's a process.

Here's the video, about 8 minutes.  The whole exercise took about 15 minutes with both dogs.  The weather was low 80's, nice and cool, and mostly in the shade.

Next I'll post the Dog Walk Relays we did the same day after a brief rest.

Upwards and onward!

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