January Goals

December Progress:
1. Run throughs and new places- mostly fail.  I did 1 run through at the very beginning of the month.  It was to a brand new place, but I didn't go to any pet stores or any where else :(

2. Contacts- I've been doing a lot of proofing in class, and went to an ASCA trial specifically to work on Lance's issue.  What really got Lance to fully miss his floor position was having him in Vito's class for a night!  While he didn't act more distracted or excited then normal he was taking extra strides before downing and once even completely blew off his position!  I was very happy that I got to show him the consequence (being picked up and brought to do it again) in a class environment so he would understand what was happening if I have to do it in a trial.

3.  Drop on recall- semi win (let's be optimistic and say semi win instead of semi fail).  I have introduced the concept to Vito this past month but haven't practiced as much as I would like.  Sometimes he slides to a down instantly but he is also just as likely to take extra strides.  Part of the reason I haven't worked on it as much is because I wanted to reevaluate my plan.  But then I didn't do that either.

4.  Out of sight stays- complete fail.  I did very little stay work this month.  Zero random stays.  Only a few out of sight stays with Vito, where I went in and rewarded every minute but he did fine.

5. Tricks- Win!  I wanted to give one last attempt to teaching them to HOLD their paw on their nose instead of swipping it and it has finally started to pay off!  Vito actually gets it and is starting to hold position, only for 1.5seconds so far.  It's more of tucking his head under his paw then putting his paw on his nose, but I don't care!  It will make it harder to transfer to a sitting position though instead of lying down.  Lance is stalled out although he does understand the freeze concept.  He currently is going on his side and raising his paw in the air, kinda near his nose and holding it.  It's not actually touching though.  I'm not sure if it's physically possible for him to maintain contact or if he's just using his stumpy legs as an excuse!

Bonus: Lance is doing fabulous with his heel work! I have had many sessions where he hasn't forged at ALL!

January Goals:
1. Tricks- Restart work with Lance learning to hold a toy in his paws.  Work on Vito holding a handstand.  Currently he can go up with the help of a wall but doesn't hold it at all.  Freeshape a trick with Chuck that doesn't involve a prop; I'm thinking a simple spin.

2. Scent Articles- haven't done these in a long time.  Need to work at least twice a week :(

3. Halts- Vito has been bumping off of me when I halt during heeling, and on pivots.  Doesn't help that I've rewarded it all the time as I love close heeling.  New plan to work on halts separately from heeling. Lots of 1-3 steps.

4.  Fronts with the DB- Work on Vito sitting close and straight even though he has something in his mouth!

Ninso  – ( January 4, 2011 at 10:50 AM )  

Nice job on the heeling! Do you think it was the treating behind you or the backing up or a combination of both? After you mentioned backing up I tried that with Jun last weekend when we were working heeling and it worked instantly! I remember Patty saying something similar once: "make the mistake bigger" but I don't recall the context.

Do you have any tips for forging on circles with the dog on the inside? Jun is great on clockwise circles (even better than on straight lines--she's not good at walking straight), but no matter how big or small the counterclockwise circle, she gets out of position. However, in a counterclockwise pivot (with me standing in exactly the same place) she does just fine. My last idea was that she has trouble bending her body to the left and maintaining that position (she spends a lot of time pacing the house in a clockwise circle, turned right in flyball, goes around to the right in disc, flips right, etc). I still think this might be part of the issue and we are working some right-side heeling to try to fix that (counter-clockwise circles with her on the outside), but if you have any other suggestions, I'd love to hear them!

Good luck with free shaping Chuck! A "chin on paws" is another easy one to free shape.

Kristine  – ( January 4, 2011 at 11:27 AM )  

Sounds like you have some terrific goals.

I've always wanted to teach Shiva how to do a proper handstand as I've seen that trick so many times in videos. But I have no clue how to go about it.

Good luck and have fun!

Laura, Lance, and Vito  – ( January 5, 2011 at 11:15 PM )  

I think the heeling improvement is a combination of treat behind/right side and backing up. The treat behind seemed to be helping but didn't stop the forging once it started in a session.

I always like to make mistakes bigger, like Patty, and she goes into slowtime when her dogs forge. It helped with lance, but really not enough. I would do entire heeling patterns in slow but then he would just be forging and moving slowly! I think moving backwards is a much clearer signal to him.

I'm kinda clueless with Jun's issue. It seems to me if she can pivot left it shouldn't be a problem! I'm assuming she can do one complete 360 degree pivot left? And can heel a few steps straight and do a military left turn (basically another pivot while moving?)

Besides the right sided work, which I think is a great idea, the only other thing I got is setting up an xpen to heel around. I use a wall for straight line heeling so an xpen for circles?

Laura, Lance, and Vito  – ( January 5, 2011 at 11:17 PM )  

Kristine- Starting a handstand is pretty easy. Just have her back onto a book, reward the 2o2o position. Raise the books higher. Or use a board instead of a book so you can raise the angle of the board to the wall. Once the books get high enough she will have to do a mini handstand to reach it. Then transfer to a wall, click before the dog touches it so it doesn't become about the wall anymore but about that lift off...

Ninso  – ( January 6, 2011 at 9:58 AM )  

Oh, an x-pen is a good idea! If I can get ahold of one, I might try it.

Yes, she can pivot just fine, and do military turns as well. But neither of those require her to bend her body to the left. What I run into with left circles is her trying to make it into series of straight lines so not only is she forging, but she is also running into my legs a lot. I think she knows where she's supposed to be, but physically has trouble staying there. It makes a lot of sense to me that she is so dominant with right turns because she does so much.

I wish I could lunge her in left circles, like a horse to work on developing her muscles on that side without worrying about position or pace. Maybe I could shape that!

achieve1dream  – ( January 9, 2011 at 1:53 AM )  

Don't feel bad about the December goals. It's so hard to get anything done with Christmas stuff to do. I'm sorry I haven't been commenting. I've been busy and I'm finding it hard to read all of the blogs I follow. I promise I'm not gone though lol. I can't wait to see how your January goals go. Good luck!!

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