Friday, February 15, 2008

Disappointing Practice

Had a tough practice last night. Wyatt had trouble with the jumps, leaving too early and hitting the jump twice in a row. We backed him up and he did better. Some folks thought he needed 2 strides before the jump. I am not sure. He just seems to misjudge jumps once in while but I am going to try giving him some more room.

He also went down right away on the out of sight sit when we all left (including the "judge".) Going to ask the judge to stay by next time in case he needs a little reminder. She also suggested working spefically on the beginning part when everyone leaves. I came back and set him up again and he did fine. I suggested to the teacher that she check out the difference in our dog dogs during the sit. She saw what I see - how Wyatt's conformation really makes sits and downs difficult though I know he CAN do it. I am also going to have the teacher treat him randomly during the sits and downs. This was the first time I stayed out of the room the whole time without doing a lot of peeking and letting him see me.

He also came up 3 times during the down. This, I believe, is related to a cold/discomfort issue. I am going to put something under him when we do the out of sight down at practice until it is warmer and until we get the sit. At home, I work on both so I will do an out of sight with him on something and do an in sight with him right in front of me so I can fix any problems. Well, I guess I have a baseline to from anyway.

I should try to remember the good parts too - great heeling with almost no lagging and a perfect broad jump and a really good retrieve on flat. The teacher, who is an AKC judge, said I should substitute our other dog (who looks similar to those that don't know them) for the sits and downs. He was rock solid last night. I could not tell if she was kidding or not; she seemed serious! But obviously I would rather get him trained to do it himself. He is so good at everything else though and doing a lot of utility. I sure hope I can get him through this!


Katrin said...

Hey John

Depending on how far you plan to go (ie if you will one day do Open B when trying for a UDX or OTCh or will only do A) you can also try to teach him the pattern- you always do a sit stay, THEN a down stay. (I believe in B you can sometimes to the down then the sit) so he understands, you will NOT EVER do a down stay without having 1st done a Sit Stay. Can help some dogs.

Good luck!

John Heffernan said...

Thanks for the comment, Katrin. The only thing I see with Wyatt is that loves to anticipate the next thing. So I have been intentionally not doing sits and downs together. Wyatt might not be the dog for this particular technique even though it could help many other dogs.

Pacco de Mongrel said...

LoL...substituting with patriot for the stay exercise??... wat a great suggestion...!

my dog is disaster for stay... sometime 'yes', sometime 'no'... so i still doesn't have the courage to take part in obedience trial, worrying that i might screw up other dogs (if happen she get up and say hi to them) during the group stay...