Wednesday, March 27, 2013

what we're working on

I like this section- it's sort of a nice reminder for me, anyway, of what we were training at a given time.

So, we're still trying to do lots of playing. I find it difficult with Lumen because sometimes she just isn't into playing. She enjoys fetch and chasing balls, which is good, so I can get some good collar restraints with a thrown ball. I've also found she's really into cooked sausages and this gross dog meat and gets quite alert when I have either of these, and so I've been trying to get her to drive into a cik/cap around the bollard or a stool or something by showing her the food, restraining her, letting her drive into the wrap, and throwing the food out of it.
I've actually experienced a bit more success with this than I have other times, and hopefully it'll just be a bridge into getting a drivey, fast, tight wrap to a thrown toy, and not having to rely on the food forever.
So we're just working on driving forward. Most people I've spoken to with Aussies suggest that this forward drive will come more with age and maturity, and Lumen did such an amazing job of wraps at foundation training the other night that I'm not -super- worried about it, I just now have to be careful not to overdo it.

I'm also aiming to do some more tunnel work this week, with a focus on adding a slight bend while maintaining fast forward drive. I want to play the 'two ball game' with the tunnel, as she's quite good at this now and I think it will increase her speed and 'gung-ho' into the tunnel.

In less agility-related things, I'm noticing she's starting to get a little teenager-y (nearly 7 months old now), eg. chasing swallows at the park the other day and giving me a huge proverbial middle finger when I told her to cut it out, so I'm just focusing a bit more on recalls from all situations and making a huge fuss when she comes (and usually, she's really great and comes running full speed, which is adorable)... I also want to take some sausages to that same park with me, make sure she knows I've got it, and see if she chases the swallows... and see if I can call her off. Oh boy is she going to have a puppy party if I can. ;) Of course, if she doesn't, I won't push it (and teach her to ignore me calling her!) but since she's good at most things (even chasing/playing with other dogs) I can't really 'work up to' this distraction level - we're already there.

She's also starting to find weird things scary, so plenty more socialisation to be done, and I can't forget about constantly exposing her to traffic (she's a bit anxious about traffic noise, especially loud trucks or motorbikes).. I've let that fall by the wayside a bit lately, so I'll have to add that to my to-do list! Good thing I'm on school holidays for 2 weeks from Thursday!! It'll be lovely to have 2 weeks to play and cuddle and fuss over them, and especially with Silvia Trkman's foundation class starting on the 8th of April, I want to be prepared, and then we get to start while I still have time off!

What are you up to with your dogs at the moment?

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