Thursday, July 19, 2007

Agility - distance work

Tuesday night Katrin had a complete course set up. We only made it through the first three jumps! The jumps were set up in a straight line, the tape for the handler veered off from the jumps at a 45 degree angle (who really knows the exact degree, though).

So much for my supposition that Ike handles jumps pretty well from a distance! hee. Katrin asked me to start putting Ike in a start-line stay. (We weren't doing this before - we were afraid it would demotivate him). So, I had him in a stay and walked to the second jump. I told him "okay, jump" for the first jump and "get out, jump" for the second jump. Well, he got out all right!! Apparently Ike really does know what "Get out" means - he just doesn't always realize that he needs to complete the obstacle after the "get out." Or maybe he does, tricky little scallywag that he is. Anyway, I was on the right of the jump and he got out to the left of jump! We tried quite a few times using a different toy Ike likes that I can put food inside of. He wasn't really into the toy....hmmmm.

Side note - we've had Carmen staying with us and Ike is such an absolute quitter when it comes to toys, attention, anything really. He just doesn't fight for anything. He'll be happy as a clam about letting Carmen steal his kitty. I have to think about this - it's so odd! I really HAVE to work harder at getting him excited about a toy.

We repeated the first few jumps a couple of times and Ike seemed to get it - as long as I stopped just prior to the 2nd jump and then ran on. Third jump, no go. He just absolutely didn't get what I wanted. Katrin was laughing because it appeared that Ike thought the tape for the handler was a jump of some sort. Every time I told him to jump he would go over the tape!!! He thought we were idiots cause he was OBVIOUSLY going over a jump of some sort. Oh gods!!

We ended class with a choice! I forget what the first option was, but the second option was jump, A-Frame, tunnel, poles, tunnel. Since I have a couple of trials coming up (hopefully), I wanted to do the run that had the A-Frame in it. Well...apparently Ike has nearly forgotten what the A-Frame is. I'm not joking!! He really considered it before he took it, but then he did it a couple more times without issues. Our last run of the evening he flew out of the tunnel - I could actually see him leaning into the side as he came out. Yay Ike - momentum!!

Although the distance work is a bit discouraging (not as much as heeling though!), I am glad we are working on it. This is an area Ike and I REALLY need help with. It reminds me again that maybe I am spreading myself a bit thin at the moment because I'd really like to find time to practice distance work and strengthen Ike's understanding of what I want.

No comments: