Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Tuesday Night Classes

Last night Bug had his second class with Kathleen. I felt like the course had more flow this week than last – it included the A-frame, chute, and tire. Bug has rarely seen the chute. First time through he kept backing out, so someone held it open for us. After that he was golden – he flew through it! No attempts to go around the tire, but to be honest he had little choice – it was against a wall! He powered up the A-frame repeatedly. GOOD BOY, Bug!!

Each time Bug ran we did the A-frame a couple of times and rewarded highly with tossed food.

I was talking to Kathleen about how last week I all of a sudden wondered if it was a rear end issue versus a generalization issue. She said if anything she thinks it would be a shoulder strength issue which brought me up short – I have never thought about it as a shoulder strength issue. However, in thinking about it and thinking about how low a Cardi’s post sternum is and those short legs I can see it. Especially since his bicipital tendon has been tender. She said she has had quite a few Cardis in her classes (Dina, I remembered you to Kathleen!) and that for a lot of them the a-frame was a challenge, more so than for Pems.

She suggested I might want to see if I can get Bug some swim time. So...I might call Sterling and see what their rate would be and how often he would need to go for it to be beneficial. I definitely think the ball will help with this too.

Then it was Ike’s turn to attend the drop-in class. I am pretty sure he had a great time. Kathleen really wants me to work on “Go” with both dogs. Last night we ended the drop-in class by working on sending Ike over a single jump. Kathleen asked if Ike would work for her. I said yes, but wasn’t really sure. It takes Ike a VERY long time to warm up to people. Like years – and even then he often won’t work for them. He worked for Kathleen no problem and was REALLY driving over the jump and ahead. Yay, Ike! I guess he really did want to go back to agility!!

Basically we were sending Ike over the jump with the inside arm and tossing the treat with the outside arm once he committed to the jump/was nearly landing, etc. Ike thought it was an awesome game. For Bug Kathleen recommended I get a finch feeding sock (for lack of a better word - no idea what it is really called - you put nyjer seed in it) and put something stinky in it like liverwurst. So when I toss it he and I could also play tug with it.

I am happy. Bug is making progress with his contact issue, Ike is having a grand time, and I am getting a different perspective and training techniques!


Sam said...

Sounds like progress all around. Didn't you say last week that Ike was trialing soon? Did that happen yet?

Jules said...

Oh no, Ike doesn't trial. It is way too stressful for him. Carmen is trialing in a couple of weekends with the Bug.

Sara said...

Yay Bug & Ike!

That is amazing that Ike worked for someone else!

I like the "go" with one arm, toss treat with other arm idea. I'm going to try that.