Clean Run - June 2011 - (Page 12)

part 3 Building and Balancing handler and oBstacle Focus By Ann Croft, photos by author In the third installment of this series, we’ll build on the foundation exercises we talked about last month and start to put it together with agility training. We’ll use some of the skills already developed to build obstacle focus and a desire for jumps, along with handler focus while working with jumps. Building the dog’s oBstacle Focus and desire For Jumps Here are some basic exercises to help dogs learn to like jumps and to seek them out. To improve a dog’s understanding of the mechanics of jumping in extension or collection, striding and takeoff, and pairing jumping trajectory and direction with handler cues, please reference any of the detailed jumping programs that are now available. I suggest those developed by Linda Mecklenburg and Susan Salo. Mecklenburg has articles and a book, and Salo has both articles and DVDs available through the Clean Run store. Exercise 1 For the clicker savvy or operantly trained dogs, a great beginning exercise to help dogs find jumps reinforcing is one I was introduced to in Linda Mecklenburg’s articles and book. You will need a clicker (or simply your voice if your dog has been trained to a verbal marker) and treats that will be visible on the surface where you will be training. For training on grass, I like thinly sliced string cheese. Set your jump bar on its lowest setting, 2" to 4", and sit perpendicular and close beside one upright as shown in Figure 1. Have your treats easily available. 1A * Set the jump bar low, 2"-4", and sit perpendicular and close to one upright. Have treats ready. 12 Clean Run | June 11

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Clean Run - June 2011

Clean Run - June 2011
Editorializing: When Did Agility Become About Looks?
Tip of the Month
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Agility…
Backyard Dogs
Building and Balancing Handler and Obstacle Focus, Part 3
Sharpening Your Snooker Skill: Teach Your Dog to Bypass Obstacles
Lameness in Agility Dogs
Confessions of a Gambling Addict, Part 2: Planning the Opening
AKC’s New Kid on the Block: Time 2 Beat
Challenges for Rising Stars
Intervertebral Disc Disease in the Canine Athlete
Challenges at CR Central
FOCUS and Impulse-control Classes: Week 2
Ready, Set, Trial! Walk, then Run
Tips for Training Running Contacts, Part 1
When is Good Enough Enough?
Agility Bloopers

Clean Run - June 2011