Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 20

Sherry Kluever First I would get the dog checked out by a veterinary chiropractor. It is common for dogs to have weave pole problems when they have physical problems. In the past, when my dogs have had problems with their weave poles, I immediately got them to the chiropractor and had them checked and adjusted. It has fixed the problem every single time. If it’s not physical, there are several things you can do to help your dog remain in the poles. Sometimes, just your body positioning Sherry, a full-time agility instructor, was a 2003 AKC World Team Member, a two-time ESPN Great Outdoor Games Gold Medalist, a three-time Grand Prix Finalist, an AKC Nationals Finalist, and a Steeplechase Finalist. Visit Sherry’s website: www.sherrykluever.net. can make all the difference in the world. Positioning yourself about a pole ahead of the dog may fix the problem. If you are falling behind the dog, he sometimes looks back rather than ahead at the poles, not realizing there are more poles ahead to be done. Make sure you are not crowding the dog. When we have weave pole problems, we often start overmanaging and crowding the dog, which contributes to the problem. If the dog is still popping out after trying these solutions, then I suggest backing up in your training. I would go back and “split out” the last two poles, using either slanted or open channel poles, and slowly move them back to the straight position. You may even need to split out the entire set of poles. I often go back and do split poles with my dogs to build confidence and speed. In addition, it’s less wear and tear on the dog. If you don’t have access to split poles, another option is to lure the dog through the last two poles with a toy or food in your hand. I have helped several students’ dogs this way although it does take good timing. Good luck! Kathy Lofthouse Leaving the weave poles at pole #10 often indicates a little more weave pole training is needed and is usually more common in an inexperienced dog. For a more experienced dog it may be caused by anticipation. Perhaps you have been practicing a lot of turns after the weaves and he is beginning to anticipate your turning. Be sure to balance any turning after weaving with sometimes going straight ahead. Still this problem is so common many handlers are left wondering why their dogs are leaving the weave poles consistently at pole #10. As the dog approaches the end of the line of poles, he has less to focus forward on; and if his concentration is diverted by the anticipation of food or a toy, or falters from lack of confidence, he can pop out early. If this happens early in training when the thought of competition is far away, it is easily remedied. But when encountered in a situation where the dog is required to deal with the pressure of competition and the handler chooses not to take time off to train the dog better, it can lead to a cautious and lackluster weave pole performance for a dog’s entire career. In this scenario, the more the handler focuses on the problem, watching the dog intently and getting closer and closer to the dog as he weaves, the more the dog focuses on the handler and the more mistakes he makes. In weave pole training, reward placement is best achieved by throwing a toy or treat container forward after the poles or sending the dog to another obstacle so he can 20 Since 1988, Kathy has competed successfully in USDAA and AKC to tournament and championship levels. She enjoys introducing a variety of dogs to agility in a positive way and is also available to help resolve problems. Contact Kathy at runjumpweave@prodigy.net or visit www.runjumpweave.com. be rewarded farther ahead on course. Timing is critical to avoid causing the dog to focus on the handler, thereby making the problem worse. If the dog has recently popped out of pole #10 heading left then be sure to throw the toy reward toward the right and vice versa. A great weaving dog views the weave poles as one obstacle. No matter how many poles are present, the dog focuses forward to the next pole. One way to help a dog that lacks confidence in his weaving ability is to use a set of six poles, run the dog through those and over a jump to his reward. Next add another set of six poles in front of the original set and run the dog through and over the jump. Since he has already successfully completed the final set and been rewarded for it, his confidence should be high and he will most likely be successful. Spend time teaching your dog to negotiate the weave poles independently and at speed while you learn to trust him to do his job. Using staggered poles, guides, and/or channels to prevent error and gradually fading them can be very helpful. You can give your team a little test. Simply set up a fast action sequence for your dog where the weave poles are negotiated with you at least 4' away and parallel to the dog. The addition of another set of six poles to the end of your training set (so the dog is required to weave 18 poles in all) is a good way to ensure that you are confident that he can be successful with 12. For your dog to be a confident weaver, your con- fidence in him is critical. Only one try is allowed to simulate competition and not to tire your dog. If you and your dog can successfully negotiate the sequence at speed while weaving 18 poles and racing to the reward, you know you are ready to try this in different locations and your agility team is ready to compete with confidence. The weave poles require utmost enthusiasm, energy, and confidence from your dog so take the time to train him well. The benefit of having a dog that loves his weave poles is great and his attitude is a precious thing, so preserve it at all costs. © clean run Clean Run | September 09
http://www.sherrykluever.net http://www.runjumpweave.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Clean Run Magazine - September 2009

Clean Run Magazine - September 2009
Contents
Editorializing: The Finger of Blame
Tip of the Month
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Agility…
Backyard Dogs
When Pigs Fly: The Ins and Outs of Serpentines, Part 3
Trainer’s Forum
Can You Handle It?
My Favorite Course
Shelter Champs: Auggie
To Stretch or Not To Stretch?
Comparing the Derrett and Mecklenburg Handling Systems, Part 7: Serpentines
Distance Challenge
Power Course Analysis
Foundation Fundamentals : Delegating Distance
Motion Discrimination
Training Dogs to Work with Physically Limited Handlers
Power Paws Drills: Inside/Outside Loop Drills
Hope: Our First Year
Jenny’s Guide to Successful Teamwork: Front and Blind Crosses, Part 1
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Clean Run Magazine - September 2009
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 2
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Contents
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 4
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Editorializing: The Finger of Blame
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Tip of the Month
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Agility…
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Backyard Dogs
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 9
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 10
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 11
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - When Pigs Fly: The Ins and Outs of Serpentines, Part 3
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 13
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 14
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 15
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 16
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 17
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 18
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Trainer’s Forum
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 20
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 21
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 22
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Can You Handle It?
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 24
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 25
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 26
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - My Favorite Course
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Shelter Champs: Auggie
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 29
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 30
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - To Stretch or Not To Stretch?
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 32
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 33
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 34
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 35
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Comparing the Derrett and Mecklenburg Handling Systems, Part 7: Serpentines
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 37
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 38
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 39
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 40
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 41
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 42
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Distance Challenge
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 44
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 45
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Power Course Analysis
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 47
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 48
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 49
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 50
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Foundation Fundamentals : Delegating Distance
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 52
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 53
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 54
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 55
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 56
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 57
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 58
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Motion Discrimination
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 60
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 61
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 62
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 63
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Training Dogs to Work with Physically Limited Handlers
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 65
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 66
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 67
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 68
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Power Paws Drills: Inside/Outside Loop Drills
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 70
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 71
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 72
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Hope: Our First Year
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 74
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - Jenny’s Guide to Successful Teamwork: Front and Blind Crosses, Part 1
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 76
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 77
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 78
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 79
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 80
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 81
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 82
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 83
Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 84
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