Clean Run - March 2013 - (Page 42)

Front and rear crosses are fundamental, a skill set that every dog and handler need to have to navigate through any agility course. A dog that understands the mechanics and handler cues for crosses will be more confident on course because he is quite clear about where he is being directed to go next. Crosses are also very easy to train and practice in your living room since they don’t require any equipment and can be done in small spaces. Practicing agility in nonagility environments also has the benefit of helping the dog to generalize skills, solidifying his understanding of the desired behavior. Living Room Agility Front Cross Use small, easy-to-swallow treats. Ideally you want to be able to hold several treats in your hand at once, doling them out one at a time. Begin with the dog on your left, standing parallel to you, his head in line with your leg in the basic recall to side position. Before adding any movement, make sure the dog is able to stand quietly next to you without a lot of fidgeting or “tap dancing.” Keep your left hand directly in front of the dog’s nose, letting him nibble on the treats. With your right foot, take a lateral step away from the dog, turning your foot 90° from your original position. Step back with your left foot to bring it in line with your right foot. As you Front & Rear Crosses By Frankie Joiris, photos by author move your left foot, lure the dog in toward your left leg, bringing him in so that he is facing you. Switch the treats to your right hand. Take a lateral step with your left foot, again turning your foot 90°, and then follow with your right foot, luring the dog with your right hand into position parallel to your right leg. Reward. To practice a right-side to leftside front cross, start with the dog on your right standing parallel you, your right hand in front of the dog’s nose, letting him nibble on the treats. With your left foot, take a lateral step away from the dog, turning your foot 90° from your original position. Step back with your right foot to bring it in line with your left foot. As you move your right foot, lure the dog in toward your right leg, bringing him in so that he is facing you. Switch the treats to your left hand. Take a lateral step with your right foot, again turning your foot 90°, and then follow with your left foot, luring the dog with your left hand into position parallel to your left leg. Reward. When you and the dog can execute these movements smoothly, you can start to send the dog around random objects in your living room; for example, a chair or a book or a large vase, whatever happens to be handy. Begin with the dog parallel to you, head in line with your leg. Take a lateral step away from the dog, turning your foot 90° from your original position. Lure the dog forward around the object as you bring your feet together. You can give a verbal A dog that understands the mechanics and handler cues for crosses will be more confident on course because he is quite clear about where he is being directed to go next. 42 Clean Run | March 13

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Clean Run - March 2013

Clean Run - March 2013
Contents
Editorializing: Would You Treat a Dog Like That?
Tip of the Month
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Agility…
Backyard Dogs
Knowledge Equals Speed! Teaching Verbal Directional Commands, Part 1
Power Paws Drills: Gnarly Rears
Ultimate Instructors: What Makes a Really Good Instructor?
Can You Handle It?
Head-Turning Turns, Part 3
The 10-Minute Trainer
Busting the Myths: Set Goals? Or Just Enjoy the Moment?
Out Spot Out! Five Required Skills for Successful Distance Work
Living Room Agility: Front & Rear Crosses
Nutrition for the Canine Athlete, Part 2
Puppy Agility Games, Part 1
Training with the Stars: Greg Derrett
The Judge’s Debriefing
Foundation Jumping, Part 1

Clean Run - March 2013

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