Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Taking Care of Business

I started going through Jane Simmons-Moake’s Clean Run articles a couple of weeks ago looking for ideas I could use in my distance training program.  I ended up ordering her book, Unleashing the Velcro Dog, and found an exercise which involves sending your dog to the end of the dogwalk and wrapping him into a tunnel.  In order to best handle the closing, it is necessary to not pass the tunnel exit.  This means your dog must be able to perform the dogwalk without you holding her paw and you have to be able to turn her into the tunnel without being next to her.  It is painfully obvious that Belle doesn't quite understand where I want her to end up when she does her dogwalk.  In addition to the original purpose of Ms. Simmons-Moake's exercise, I became obsessed with the best way to handle the closing--front cross or rear.  With Belle, the front is best because I have to wait (stand still) in order to do the rear cross.

After running both Dusty and Belle, I decided to add a curved tunnel and an additional jump and devise some other sequences.  In the video below, I’m concentrating on the best way to handle the last three jumps.  I was really intent upon finding out whether a front cross before #7, a front cross between #7 and #8, or a rear cross at #8 was the most effective way to handle the closing.  In this instance, "most effective" means which cross got the fastest closing from my dog.  However, as I found out, you do have to handle all the obstacles if you hope to have a clean run.  (For Dusty, the rear cross was almost as effective as the front cross, and it was a lot easier to do.)

"Women and cats will do as they please and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea." Robert A. Heinlein

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