Lance in Grad Open!

We made it through! 

Signal Exercise-
I believe this was the least amount of forging the corgi has done in a trial!  We lost points for forging and then our front and finish.  I was planning to use both verbals and hand signals on the signal exercise but in the moment just used his signals and he did great!  He didn't move forward at all when I left him, just adjusted his front feet.  He also didn't move any feet on the sit!  I would prefer that Lance move his front feet back instead of his back feet forward, but since Lance much prefers this way my rule is his front feet have to be still and they were today!

Scent Article-
Handler gets to choose which one and I chose leather as Lance is the most confident on it.  He picked up the right one immediately, excitedly turned to bring it and then dropped it.  Adam thinks he dropped it when a dog barked, I have no idea.  He then looked at me, wandered over to the judge, found the right one again, looked at me, sniffed the rest, and finally brought back the right one.  Technically I should have been NQed on this exercise as the last time Lance looked at me I waited a tiny bit and then moved my head up.  I don't know if the judge noticed it or if he was just being generous on my green dog.  We just lost 1pt for the drop and 1/2pt for the front.

Lost a 1/2pt on the pivot sit as Lance over roatated.  He veered off at the wrong angle but then saw the glove and happily bounced to it.  I saw him eye the jump on his way back with the glove but then made a good choice not to take it!  I know Lance still has lots of questions on how this exercise goes!

Moving Stand-
Big forging!  But instant stay and I will overlook the sniff to the ground.  I forgot that I bring my hand up to my waist as I turned to face him (I've been told it is legal but to be prepared to lose some points by some uneducated judges) but it didn't phase Lance.

Go Out-
Before the judging started Lance needed a 2nd signal to lock onto the go out spot, but then almost held it until I sent him.  Still need to work on duration with this.  On the actual send he sprinted off to the corner where he retrieved the glove, very certain he was right.  Lance even tried to do his touch to the gate, and I wanted him to touch the first few shows, but we didn't lose any points as his paw actually went through the hole :)  We usually practice on solid walls and solid ring barriers so I am very happy that he drove out (although in the wrong direction) and still performed his touch!  I am also proud that he didn't think about arching back to take the jumps like he has tried in his 2 run throughs.

Directed Jumping-
Good boy!  Lost 1/2pt on the front.

Q, 191.5.  I am so happy with where we are at in our training.  I know we are not yet ready for utility but this was a great class to get him used to the exercises. 

Work to do before we are ready for utility:
- Practice everything with the jumps set out so he knows that he does not need to take them on gloves and go outs
- Work on doing the go out right after we did gloves and teach him the difference!
- Go outs in many more places with confidence in being sent from a full ring distance
- Holding his mark on the go out until released
- Confidence on scent articles.  Also work on spreading them far apart as when he does get nervous and drop one, it is often carried a few steps out of the pile and he has a hard time refinding it. 

Megan  – ( December 4, 2010 at 7:33 PM )  

Great job! I can't wait to see you two in Utility!

Do you plan on doing more Grad Open shows... or waiting until he's ready for Utility now?

Laura, Lance, and Vito  – ( December 4, 2010 at 7:38 PM )  

not many trials offer grad open. There will be one day at SPDTC again in January before the Land O Lakes trial, where there's none, and then none until March.

I do plan on doing it in January and will decide what he is ready for when I get to March. I think the more experience he has in the ring doing these baby versions of utility the better! It's just a bummer you can't continue attempting the class once you get the title.

Pepper  – ( December 5, 2010 at 1:23 PM )  

He did great! Stupid question, but what sort of competition is this? Over here we don't really have anything like this sort of thing. Well, theres obedience and in the upper levels theres scenting with cloth, a go out (the dog has to down at the back of a triangle of cones) and distance control (sit/stand/down) but nothing with jumps or that glove exercise.

Laura, Lance, and Vito  – ( December 5, 2010 at 1:47 PM )  

Grad Open is an optional titling class. It is the stepping stone to Utility (our 3rd level out of 3) so everything is the same but the exercises are all a bit easier. LAnce is not quite ready to do utility but this was a good way to get him ready for it. I've seen some of your guys obedience trials and it looks fun! I really love the go back to the cones!

Our Utility is the following:
1. Signals- Heeling pattern with no verbal to heel, signal to stand stay, signals to down, sit, come, finish from 40ft.
(Grad open was from a closer distance)

2. Scent Discrimination- There are 5 leather articles, 5 metal in a pile. The dog faces away from the pile at the start, handler turns and sends dog to bring back the one they handled. It's done a 2nd time so the dog retrieves a metal and a leather.
(Grad open had 4 articles, started facing pile)

3. Directed Retrieve- 3 White gloves are spread out while dog is facing away. Judges tells which one the dog is to get, handler pivots and directs dog.
(Grad open has only 2 gloves, no middle one)

4. Moving Stand- start heeling, dog is given cue to stand while handler keeps moving and judge does full exam. Call straight to heel, no front.
(Grad open is the same)

5. Directed Jumping- Dog does go out in between the jumps, handler commands the dog to sit at 20ft past the jumps. Then directs the dog over the jump the judge signals. It is repeated so the dog ends up doing both jumps.
(Grad open separates the go out from the jump. Go out was done at only half the ring, not full distance, and only done once.)

Cynthia  – ( December 9, 2010 at 6:17 PM )  

That is so neat! I've never watched Grad Open, or read the rules, so it was very cool to watch your video. Maybe I'll do it with my BC when he's ready. I'm training him for Utility now. He wouldn't even be ready for Grad Open yet, but it would be a good place to go before going to full utility. Utility makes me nervous, I've never done it before, and there is SO MUCH to train!

Cynthia  – ( December 9, 2010 at 6:19 PM )  

This is for Pepper... I'd love to watch European Obedience. I've never seen it. I've done some searching on YouTube but I really don't understand the levels and such.

Jenna Z  – ( December 13, 2010 at 10:52 AM )  

This is SO SUPER impressive! Way to go! During the blizzard this weekend, we were out plotting and laying tracks for our club's tracking trial. I see you were crazy too and were agility trialing it up in the winter storm! Sane people stay home during conditions like that but they don't have any fun!

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