Vito CPE Sunday- Or baby dogs are fun!

Day 2!

Vito definitely was more confident sunday then saturday!  He seemed to have more of his drive and obstacle focus back and was committing more to the obstacles.  I didn't use treats during our warm up today and instead just did a lot of tugging with him.  I have no idea if doing so is what helped him or if it was just being more experienced.  Video is at the bottom!

Crazy little red dog!  Vito comes bursting off the start line, zooms by me and sprints all the way down the long field towards a distance white dot on the floor.  He was a bit surprised as to why his "target" was so far away, but ran back very happily to me right away where we continue on with my chosen course!  He really recovered himself very quickly and I was quite happy with how we did.  I think I laughed about this for a long time after it happened. 

Vito was pretty distracted at the start line, but then shot off very focused when I released him. I got to to play on the dogwalk again with him but this time Vito jumped off his first attempt.  I bring him around again, do the aframe-very nicely I might add, and then have another go.  This time his DW was beautiful and I felt like celebrating with him!  I don't think he wanted to stop and celebrate though as he seemed quite perplexed by my actions and continued over the jump :)  I then lose my mind and have no clue how to waste some time before the buzzer goes and I can continue to the gamble.  When we do get to start it I was very happy that Vito didn't even think about coming in after the tunnel and it looked like we were going to do it!  But alas Vito spotted his leash on the floor and continued to go "out" a bit too far and bypassed the jump.  I actually think it's quite odd since I have never used the leash as a target, very very rarely tug on it with him, but all 3 runs today Vito went and picked it up excitedly.

Nice easy run and I was happy with Vito's focus.  No silly stuff this run at least!

Pepper  – ( August 17, 2010 at 5:56 AM )  

Oh man I was laughing so hard when he took off, totally hilarious. Vito, you so crazy :) He's looking pretty good though!

Ninso  – ( August 17, 2010 at 10:07 AM )  

Fun stuff! I think I might give Jun a break from disc for a couple months and try some agility this winter.

Megan  – ( August 17, 2010 at 11:25 AM )  

Vito looks amazing. I can't wait to see you two run!

MurphyDog  – ( August 17, 2010 at 5:44 PM )  

Just wanted to swing by and tell you to check out my blog post...I left something for you!

wags, wiggles & slobbers

Muttsandaklutz  – ( August 17, 2010 at 8:46 PM )  

Nice job Vito! He really is working super well, and totally looks like he's enjoying every second.

Amy / Layla the Malamute  – ( August 18, 2010 at 10:17 PM )  

Awesome Vito!! He's crazy fast.

What video editing program do you use? To add the words (like the very beginning, the date and CPE trial) as well as the music? I'd like to fix up some videos, but can't find a decent program.

Also, CONGRATULATIONS on Lance's TWO new titles! That's fantastic!!!

Honey the Great Dane  – ( August 18, 2010 at 11:55 PM )  

Way to go Vito!! I LOVE his energy! So amazing to watch~! And congrats on Lance's titles too!

Thanks for your encouragement with us trying competitive Obedience. I think I just have a bad experience with competitions because the dancing ones have been so unpleasant for Honey - I haven't posted yet about our latest competition but that was just awful. She is just so miserable and unmotivated when she has to work without rewards - and the dance routines (3-4mins) are just too long for her to focus & remain motivated, without rewards - so she becomes really slow and demotivated and it's awful to watch. You feel really cruel. I hate it. I feel like it's missing the point of what doing these activities are about. I think it's different when you've got a dog like Vito - or even Lance - coz they're working breeds and have that drive in them. You don't mind doing competitions - even if they're a bit challenging - if you're dog is obviously engaged and enjoying himself, like yours are. Imagine if yours were plodding around with their heads down, looking bored and miserable! You probably wouldn't be so keen to compete with them either!

Honey's like that when I have to force her to work without rewards and no matter how much "fading of treats" I do (and trust me, I've done A LOT!) I think there is just a limit for the type of dog she is. She's already doing better than most dogs her type.

It's not like she isn't into dancing as such - she loves doing it, as long as she feels motivated enough to do it. After the competition, I repeated our whole routine at the end holding just a treat in my hand - hardly fed her - but it was like a different dog. Wait till you see the video footage and then you'll know what I mean. It breaks your heart. I just don't think she's got the work drive to keep doing the 30+ tricks & moves required in a routine, one after the other, and keep focused during all that time, without any rewards in between - she's already doing more than most giant breeds. There;s a reason you don't see many (any!) Newfies or Bassett Hounds or Mastiffs or other big, low drive breeds in competitive dog sports!!

But overall, I have found it easier to work her in Obedience without treats. I'm not dissing Obedience - I'm sure it's just as hard - but I think because there is a break between each indvidual exercise and each exercise is relatively straightfoward and simple (even though you have to be more precise) - AND you don't have to worry about keeping in time to music - so it's much less demanding on her. So I might retire her from competing in dancing (we'll keep on doing it just for fun as that's my first love) but try competing in Obedience instead...anyway, we'll see.


Ashley, Abbey, and Kindle  – ( August 19, 2010 at 6:46 PM )  

Our Running Contacts are definitely a work in progress. They aren't bad, but they are far from where I want them to be. We're a little inconsistent on exactly WHERE we hit the yellow. I want her to hit deeper and sometimes she goes a little bit high. By the way I think you're doing an awesome job with Vito's running contacts. I prefer running to 2o2o, so I'm forever a running contact addict!!

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