Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Stewie is catching on very quickly. He will do anything that earns him treats. He will get on the ball, lay down, sit up, stand up, bend from side to side, and wave. We did 10 minutes tonight. It is a great time to year to do this program, especially with the cold and wind today.
Sunday, December 27, 2009
What a great time I have had with him! He is my best boy! Jack Russell Terriers are the best! Always ready for run and any activity at anytime and a lap dog extraordinaire in the evening.
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Here is the link: http://johannthedog.com/gallery2/main.php
Scroll to the bottom of the page , and look for Stewie in his Santa outfit in front of the Christmas tree. Click all the stars on his picture to vote!
Thanks and Merry Christmas!
Nancy and Stewie
Monday, December 21, 2009
Calera Oklahoma was friggin’ cold, and wet, and windy. I did six days of NADAC judging clinic… three mixed classroom/ practical and three practicing judging under NADAC rules for a Fun Raiser trial. I’ve learned heaps and have a lot of notes to sort through.
I’m happy to be home. I left early on Thanksgiving day and now it’s well into December. I especially regret that I didn’t get the haircut I needed about a week before I started the trip. Did I mention that Calera was windy?
Never have I maintained much of a bias for or against any agility venue. You know, it’s all rock ‘n roll to me. With that in mind I find NADAC to be pragmatic and forward-thinking and probably apart from any venue subscribing to the so-called “international standard” for the sport. I say “apart” and intend not to mince words here. This is not the same game as played in the USDAA, TDAA, or AKC. NADAC is founded on a thoughtful sensitivity for safety and fairness to the dog both in the design of courses and in the construction of equipment.
Course design is intuitive. And everything is about speed and flow. You know, the reason I even attended this clinic is because I’ve wanted from the beginning to make my boy Kory’s introduction to the sport of agility in NADAC. I want him to understand from the very beginning that agility is about working at full speed.
As to construction standards… if there is any one thing that has permanently switched in my brain is that contact obstacles should have a rubber surface; (yah, I reckon a NADAC person reading this would be wondering why I’ve been retarded on the point). To tell you the truth, Sharon Nelson did about a 15 minute demonstration on a full-height A-frame with a young pup who’d not been previously introduced to the obstacle. Here was a young dog wiggling around and moving with complete confidence and control on a surface that without the rubber would have had the dog scrabbling his toe-nails against a harder surface and feeling out of control. With the rubber surface the dog was completely nonplussed and in control.
In terms of distance training and handling and directional control of the dog NADAC players are far superior to players in any other venue in this country. I’m sorry, that sounds like quite a preposterous claim based as it is on a nearly insignificant statistical sampling. Given the amazing distance handling I saw this past weekend… I believe it right down to my bones.
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
From the same Organization that has grown to great levels in the UK, we are now expanding to America.
Begin 2010 by starting with a fresh, new, competitor friendly organization,? for all dogs? ? UK Agility International!
Click on our web site to see what we are all about; how you and your dog can compete & how your club or group can run a UKI event.
Attached is a PDF file detailing the benefits of UKI for the competitor and trial manager.
Greg and Laura Derrett
Looking for an exciting new venue that offers:
? 5 Jump Heights
? 2 separate programs
? Points system for progression
? Training rounds allowed ? with a toy!
? No up contacts judged!
? Nursery classes for debuting dogs
? Next day move ups
? Friendly equipment specs, 5?7? A-frame, no triple jump
? Free personal online account for record keeping
? Transfer to UKI at current competing level
? WE listen, yearly competitor surveys
? Online entries
? And?much more
Agility for all competitors, run by competitors!
Check out UKAgilityInternational.com for all the details!
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Stewie got the ComfortFlex Sport Harness from Clean Run, and he loves it! Stewie likes the fact that it goes on over his head, he doesn't have to pick up his feet and put them in, or be worried that the strap will pinch his tummy when it is buckled up. The ComfortFlex harness goes on in a snap, over the dog's head and then the velcro strap goes under his stomach and attached to the other side, and is also secured with a buckle snap.
It is Stewie, Jack Russell Terrier approved!
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
I noticed there is a new DVD, Get on the Ball 2, and wondered if anyone can tell me if they have tried this, and how they like it, the dogs like it, and whether they have noticed improvement after using it.
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
I sent Stewie to the hoop, told him "left" and he took the tunnel, good boy! I worked him off of both sides, and also sent him straight ahead with a "go on" several times as well. He only made a mistake a couple of times.
Tomorrow we work on "right", Stewie is not quite as consistent on rights.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Tomorrow I will bring over my son's dog Cleveland to really up the distraction factor.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Our last run of the day was Jumpers and it was a fast course! Look at the beginning, it is lucky I can send Stewie on ahead of me, or I would never have made it. Stewie had a great run and made it look easy and ended the weekend with a Q and a 1st place, with a yard per second of 5.07.
Saturday our first run was Touch and Go again. Here is the course, it was very fun and fast, and we got a Q and a 1st place. Course time was 47.62, and Stewie's time was 31.04. His yards per second was 5.92. I think this was a personal best for Touch and Go.
Next were Regular 1 and 2.
Regular 1 was a great run, Stewie was really fast and he got his weave pole entry first shot and weaved really fast, just like he goes at home! At last! He also got his tunnel/dog walk discrimination with no problems. We got a Q and a 1st place. Yards per second were 4.51.
Here is the Chances course, it looked really doable. It started with 2 jumps and then an out to the A-frame. I was not worried about the discrimination since Stewie favors the contact obstacles, or so I thought. He took the tunnel instead of the frame, and of course the rest of the course we did flawlessly. Another Chances without a Q.
Next was Jumpers and it was a great course. Stewie and I did it without a hitch and got a Q and a 2nd place.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Ace's trial in Mt Holyoke started with Elite Chances. Stewie was wired and did not hold his start line. I really need to get serious about this. We were not connected in this run but I did get him into the #7 tunnel and out over the #8 jump, but then he came in and took the jump. Only two Elite dogs Q'ed in this run.
Elite Regular was next, it was a really nice course, but somehow Stewie ran by jump #5, and then back jumped it, we kept going and the rest of the run was beautiful. I was able to send him out to tunnel # 17 and get running along the dog walk to keep up with him. He had a fabulous entry to the weaves, and weaved beautifully. He also got the discrimination to # 13 perfectly. All in all a great run except for the bobble in the beginning.
All in all 4 great runs, 3 Q's, two 1sts, and a 2nd place.
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Stewie also did some great weaves and sends out to tunnels. All in all a great practice.
Sunday, November 1, 2009
I did get him to go some nice weave poles, and we are still practicing sending to hoops and dogwalk/tunnel discrimination. Then I let him go out in the tall grass and sniff around.
Friday, October 30, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
Stewie and I had a good day at Act-Up trial in Wrentham, MA last weekend. The first class was Chances. It looked very doable. It was deceptive, since not many people qualified.
The next class was Regular 1,
This was an excellent run, we got the discrimination, Stewie nailed the weave poles at speed, and we got a Q and a blue ribbon.
Regular 2 was a bit of a different story. Here is the course:
The run was going really well, and I sent Stewie to the poles, #13, he went right to the first pole, and then ran over and took the #3 tunnel. I called him back and he did the same thing! I asked the judge if I could make him do the weaves, and he said be my guest. So we did them the 3rd time and then went on and finished the rest of the course beautifully. What a fresh terrier!
Jumpers was a great course, we got a Q and it finished up Stewie's Elite Jumpers Superior Title. That is 20 Q's in Elite Jumpers.
Tunnelers was at the end of the day, it was a fast course, and other than crashing into Stewie(he just kept on going) it was a great run, a Q and a 4th place, behind the Shelties.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Next two runs were Regular and Stewie did an awesome job on both runs. The first course was the hardest, I had to call him hard a couple of times but we didn't have any off courses. There was a dogwalk tunnel discrimination and Stewie got the out to the tunnel easily.
The 2nd run was actually smoother, both were Q's and 1st's.
The next run was Touch and Go. Here is the course
Tunnelers was great until he went into a tunnel and then popped right back out to sniff! , I got him back in but was over time. Another JRT right before him had done the same thing.
Friday, October 2, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
The requirements are 250 lifetime points in Regular with 100 points earned in the current year. The rest of the classes require an Open or Elite title with 3 qualifying scores in the current year. I reviewed the requirements for Champs and Stewie did qualify in all classes except Weavers.
It makes me pretty proud that he was qualifed to go. Maybe someday...........
Monday, September 21, 2009
Mary and Lexi got Chances Q's both days, that was awesome! Lexi has six more Chances to go to get her NATCH.
Our first run was Chances and it was doable! I Unfortunately there were no course maps at all to make copies from. There was a send out and then the dogs had to come back in, and I didn't pull Stewie quick enough and pulled him off a jump. What a dunce! Other than that it was a great run and I was proud of Stewie's performance.
Jumpers was next and it was a really tight and tough one. I actually did a front cross to turn Stewie off a tunnel, and I think I performed it correctly and the brat cut behind me and took the tunnel after all. No Q there.
Regular was next and the first set of poles was the 2nd obstacle, after the start hoop. Mary thought he was get the poles since he wouldn't have gotten up to speed yet. But he blasted by them and I had to bring him back.
Regular 2: The poles were the 2nd to last obstacle and he got them first try and weaved great! Yahoo! Too bad we had missed a jump earlier in the run, drat!
We did redeem ourselves in Tunnelers and got a Q and a 3rd place. That Q gave Stewie his Superior Tunnelers Title, that is 200 points in Elite Tunnelers. Michelle gave us a title ribbon.
Friday, September 18, 2009
Isn’t it funny how all of these posts on dogs shaping people have ended up having picture of a terrier with them. And not coincidentally many of your comments are about Jack Russell Terriers! Hmm, yes indeed Terriers are just masterful at shaping their people. It is because they are so brilliant and have a tenacity that allows them to continue to try something over and over until it finally works.
So let me start off by sharing some of the things my terrier have managed to shape me to do. Twister was magnificent at it. When I used to be in sales my dogs traveled with me. We would come home from work at night and I would rush to the bathroom. Twister would go to the office and take any new fax that came in from the fax machine and delivery them, one page at a time, to me sitting on the toilet. Now this was a good thing and she would get reinforced for it. However when I left sales and became a full time dog trainer there where no longer daily faxes for my little terrier to deliver. That didn’t stop Twister. Every once in a while as I worked at my desk in my office, she would dig through trash until she found an intact sheet of paper. She would then leave the office with it and then prance back with it in her mouth, proud as can be as if to announce “here, you didn’t see this one, this is a fax that just came in.” I would laugh my butt off and of course I would reward her. She then went on to include John’s desk in on the game. She would jump on his desk and take a piece of mail from his stack to deliver it to me. It always cracked me up (although it soon grew tiresome for John:)).
I had trained Twister to sit on a chair in the kitchen anytime anyone prepared food (dogs meals or human) in
Twister (1992-2008) working her chair routine
the kitchen. When she got on her chair she would earn the chance to be rewarded. It wasn’t a gaurenteed reward, although Twister believed it should be. If I was preparing a big meal and was in the kitchen for a long time she would get on and off the chair as if to let me know she been rewarded enough. That never worked, what did work (and it took me giving her quite few reinforcements before I clued it) was if Twist didn’t get her cookies she would start to rattle the chair. She did it by shifting her weight back and forth on it in order to get it rocking against the tile floor. This quiet noise brought my attention to her in a more subtle way and allowed her to earn several rewards before I realized what was going on. She was a gem that Twister girl and I continued to reward that little game of hers long after I knew what she was doing. Sometimes cute gets rewarded too.
DeCaff shaped me to do something that later caused me about 9 months of training grief. Here is what happened. When she was a puppy and we would tug I would play Smack Da Baby with her (wacking her with my free hand as she tugged) and she loved the game. However if I smacked her anywhere from her shoulders forward she would drop the toy. She always was happy to re-grip but she always dropped the toy. So her behaviour unconsciously shaped me not to Smack Da Baby above her shoulders. No big deal right? Wrong. It took me 9 months to figure out why I struggled getting any speed or rhythm with DeCaff in her weave pole performance. It took her over 4 seconds to weave 12 poles. Once I realized it was that she didn’t the poles touching her anywhere near her shoulders or face I fixed my problem with less a month of counter-conditioning. When I was done not only could I Smack Da Baby anywhere on her body (including in her face) I also could also play the new game of smack-a-wee-baby-face-into-the polies. I never had a problem with her weave poles again and she went on to have one of the fastest times for Jack Russell and mini dogs in the Clean Run 60 Weave Pole Challenge.
Don’t think terriers are the only dogs that can shape behaviour either. All dogs have this skill. My Border Collies are just to obvious though. Clearly they haven’t learned the subtitles of the terriers. That is until Feature. I have always thought of her as Terrier in a Border Collie’s body. The most annoying behaviours Feature has pulled on me involve her crate games. Notice how she has managed to get me to leave her on an agility table rather than in her crate when I teach or train. She is just brilliant.
Okay, your turn. Continue to tell me the things your dogs have managed to shape you to do. Do be shy, I’ve showed you mine, now you should me yours!
Today I am grateful how all of my dogs; those past and present, continue to teach me that reinforcement really does build behaviour."
Purina Incredible Dog Challenge Eastern Regionals on ESPN this weekend & FCI updates, results and maps!
09/20/09 Sunday 12:00 - 1:00 PM ESPN2
09/20/09 Sunday 5:00 - 6:00 PM ESPN
Spoiler Alert: Here are results from the event last August.
Don't miss some of the results & course maps we're posting with the FCI World Agility Championships being held in Austria this weekend. We've got one post going and will be updating that post throughout the weekend.