Clean Run Magazine - September 2009 - 21

Marcy Mantell The infamous “10th pole pop” is unfortunately far more common than we would like to recognize. Undoubtedly, there will be one or perhaps several reasons why your dog is popping out, so let’s consider a few common ones. Both reward placement and timing are very important, so consider where, when, and how the reward is coming into play. Are you clicking or offering food or a toy at pole #12 or earlier? Are you throwing or handing your dog his reward? Many dogs rewarded while in the poles will anticipate the reward along the way, which can cause them to slow down and/or pop. I find throwing a reward after pole #12 helps the dog continue to drive forward down the centerline and to focus on finishing the last gate. Be sure not to throw too early since this can cause the dog to pull out. Start throwing your reward straight ahead as you see your dog’s nose is wrapping pole #11. And, if you don’t feel like you have great timing then wait until the moment your dog has completed the last pole entirely, but before he is inclined to look back at you for his reward. Be sure to throw with a certain amount of vigor, as a wimpy toss will likely get the dog to slow down at the end of the poles. Remember you want accurate and fast poles. Another common variable in the weave pole popping puzzle is how your body may be cueing your dog. Are you starting a front Marcy and her Sheltie MACH3 ADCH Wave finished 2nd at the AKC Nationals in 2007. They have been Steeplechase and Grand Prix finalists and three-time AKC/ USA World Team members. In 2008, Wave won the Individual Gold medal in Helsinki, Finland. Contact Marcy at merchalex@aol.com for agility chat, graphic design, and digital photography projects. cross too early? Are you moving too far laterally? Or are you dropping an arm or shoulder as you start to move toward your next position on course? Are you ahead of or behind your dog? Some dogs need to be supported all the way through the last pole, and if you start to slow down or stop abruptly, even by one step, a dog might pull out. Remember, our dogs are so finely tuned to our motion that the slightest mistimed movement can cause havoc. Also, take into consideration which side of the poles you are on because the left side is a more common side for the dog to pop. And look at which obstacle is looming after the poles. Many inexperienced dogs are drawn to tunnels, as well as other fun and highly rewarded obstacles, such as the table or contacts. If that is the case then be sure and set those sequences up in training. And, sometimes it is not always what we do, but what we don’t do. Be sure to ask yourself if you are focused and prepared for your run. Are you too nervous or perhaps too relaxed? Look for any difference in your mental outlook from when your dog was performing correctly. While you are walking the course take the time to look and find the exact position you need to be in when your dog exits. Before you enter the ring be sure to visualize your spot and precisely when you are going to get there. People often tell me their dogs weave perfectly at home or in class and then have meltdowns in a trial. I watch those handlers and see how tense they are at the poles for fear their dog will not enter correctly or pop out. Their demeanor changes completely and, as a result, so does the dog’s performance, just as they had suspected. Finally, one invaluable training tool I always recommend is having videotape of all your runs. Then clip together all the weave pole sequences from the last 20-30 runs and review each carefully. Look for similarities and differences in when your dog pops or doesn’t. And, if you don’t see it right off, then try watching it in slow motion. You will be amazed at what you can detect at a slower speed. The answer may be more obvious than you think. Happy weaving! D Brenna Fender is a freelance writer with an undergraduate degree in mass communications and a masters degree in elementary education. She lives with her husband, two young children, a Whippet, and a young Papillon. Over the years, Brenna and her dogs have earned titles in agility, obedience, conformation, hunting, rally, and lure coursing. The husband and children are far less impressively titled. Contact Brenna at BrennaFender@gmail.com. September 09 | Clean Run 21
http://agilityjot.com http://agilityjot.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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