October, 2010

Oct 10

(Not Quite An) Agility Pup

For my birthday Dan got me two lessons with Kathleen of Heart Dog Agility and an overnight in the Santa Cruz Hilton.

Princess Ada could get used to this.

We had lessons with Kathleen on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning.  Since Ada is just a beginner so we just learned some basics including how to effectively train using a clicker.

We started off with Target Training which helps Ada learn to interact with her environment to get a reward.

Ada gets a treat for touching the target with her nose.

Ada gets a treat for walking to and then touching the target.

Then I had to get her to stand in a box without luring or gesturing.  She just had to try things and see what would be rewarded.

First she gets a treat just for touching the box.

Next she gets a treat for stepping into the box.

Finally she gets a jackpot (3 or 4 treats) for standing all feet in the box.

We finished off with Kathleen helping Ada overcome her fear of walking through a tube.

Ada weighs her fear of the tube against the deliciousness of hot dog.

Although Ada has a long way to go before she’s an agility champ, I think we’re all excited to learn more and it was terrifically fun.  What a great birthday!

UPDATE: Something to aspire to: National Finals Small Dog Agility Course (video) and National Finals Large Dog Agility Course (video)