Monday, September 27, 2010

The Flying Squirrel - Exercise 1

I set up the Flying Squirrel and started playing around with it.  I decided the first exercise I'd video would be the simple wrap exercise I shared in Saturday's post. My ultimate goal for Belle is to be able to send her to the tunnel while I remain behind the red distance line.
In the video below, I demonstrate some of the steps involved in increasing the distance from which you can handle the wrap to the tunnel.  I begin with Libby at the "good start" position.  Since she doesn't send to the tunnel the first time, I move in with her as needed.  With a less experienced dog, I would move in even closer to tunnel.  However, since I am working on sending to the tunnel, I would not get closer than  four or five feet to the tunnel entrance.  As the dog gains confidence, I can then work my way back to the black distance line.
When I began writing this post, I thought there were only two components involved in achieving the distance needed to successfully complete this exercise beginning from "the goal" without crossing the purple distance line:  send distance and lateral distance.  As I worked toward "the goal" with Belle, I discovered being able to send her from this spot also involves getting her over jumps A & B and then being able to turn her to the right after C/#1. 
(P.S.  03/21/11.  As you watch the video notice how much more successful we are when I remain in motion rather than coming to a standstill and depending upon arm movement to send the dogs.)

I was pleased with how well the dogs did.  Dusty did a nice job with a bit of increased send distance, and Belle was able to handle both the increased send and lateral distance challenges.  I think that if obstacles #1-#3 had been the only obstacles on the field, Belle and I could have completed this exercise from way out by "the goal."  (I wish I would have thought to try that before tearing down this course.)  When I set up this course again, I will work on the exercise below.  Once we can do that, I'll see if we can get that pesky wrap into the tunnel.

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