Flyball on the Couch

Well tonight we did some fun flyball training. As I want to start Tatum off right. I want her to have a super nice box turn. And I want to do drive shaping with her, so she can get high, and still be in control and think, and come down quickly when she needs to. Important for both flyball and agility. And even obedience, really.

So I took a break from moving hosts and looking at cables and worked with the dogs a bit. I also want Chase to have a better box turn. So I stuck the tug toy up on the couch and played with Chase, jumping up on the couch, grabbing the toy, and jumping back off to me. Hopefully fast! With him I’ll eventually move this onto the wall, I think he’ll be great at, literally, bouncing off the wall. 🙂

And Tatum was all wound up at that point, so I got her out too and put Chase away. And she will follow the tug toy with me, and she is even starting to tug! She does have a good amount of prey drive and I’m tapping into that. So she followed the tug up onto the couch, then off. And we did that a few times and she had a great time! She’s gonna be a great flyball collie. There are not many collies in flyball. Last check there were only 3 (Tatum included) in U-FLI.

So the beginnings of flyball training for her. And some flyball fun during the cold winter days.

Moving Hosts

Ugh. Moving hosts takes a long time. I was hosted on Blue Host, a shared host. And I was getting the Exceed CPU messages too often for my liking.

So I’m moving to a VPS, Virtual Private Server. I did some research and I think it’s best for me. I hope I have enough space, memory, etc for all my sites.

Of course it being a VPS, It’s basically a blank empty box and I have to install everything except the Operating System, from scratch. PHP, MySQL, Virtual Hosts, etc. So it’s coming along. Taking a while, that’s why I haven’t been blogging much, but it’s getting there!

Anyway… that’s what I’ve been doing lately. 🙂

Stand for Exam and Heeling

Two of the most critical things for Chase to learn at the moment.. before he goes into Novice to get his CD in Obedience, is the Stand for Exam and Heeling.

The Stand for exam is so hard for him. Hard, because he loves people! Which actually says a lot for him. When he was found in the parking lot of the pound in Utah County, he would approach no one. He was afraid, and that is why they named him Chase. And when he came to stay with us, he wouldn’t come to us either for a long time. Now, it’s hard to tear this boy off of a person. So probably he liked people, but was too afraid.

Anyway so the Stand for Exam is hard for him because he gets all wiggle butt and wants to say hi to the person approaching him. Well, my obedience instructor came up with a great solution! He knows a perch box, he loves putting his feet, front or back, and he’ll offer either or both, on a box. So we have him do that, I put him in a stand, stay, walk away, and the examiner comes and touches him.

Wow! Giving him that perch box to put his feet on is helping already! He now is learning this is an exercise, instead of just people saying hi and petting him. Already, after only doing it a half a dozen times, he’s getting it!

Also his heeling. It is coming along. When there is a treat on the stick he heels beautifully. He doesn’t understand to keep watching me, though, when the treat goes away. So we are working on that, too. I am working a Look command with him so he can sit and look at me. And I will transfer that into the moving heel.

Training with him on Monday was a ton of fun. His Go Outs are also doing very well, he’s starting to spin and sit. I didn’t write about this before because I was still stunned.. well, you can read my post from Monday, I am trying not to think about it anymore. Sometimes I just want to look at hot tubs, buy one, and sit and relax and blog. Can you blog from a hot tub? They need to make waterproof laptops.

That Darn Flyball Box

Okay I went to have Angel’s and Tatum’s toenails trimmed by our Thunder Paws Flyball Captain, and of course she sent me home with a practice flyball box. 🙂

It’s sitting in my front room and I haven’t, of course, used it yet. I want to really find out what I’m doing with the darn thing. Chase needs to get higher up on the box. She has taught her Jack Russel to bounce off the wall, literally! I think that’s an awesome idea. I need to get a carpet square or something and put it on the wall, then have Chase do that. Once i show him how, I know he’ll have no problem. That will get him WAY UP on the box, which is what I want. And without a jump prop in front.

As for Tatum, I don’t know, yet, how to start her out. I want to start her out right. So if you have any suggestions, please let me know! I have some ideas and I’ve gotten help from my team, and I’m always open for more ideas.

EDIT:
Links to box training:
Shoot Training
More Shoot Training
Swimmer’s Turn
Flyball Training Manual

— I don’t get the Shoot… how does the dog change from the long ramp to doing a swimmer’s turn off a short box?

Collies and Border Collies are so Different!

We have four smooth collies in our house and one border collie. And man, are they different. 🙂 Chase, the border collie, has taught me so much about drive shaping and high drive dogs. And I hope to use that to help train Tatum as we move through the training process.

I went to obedience training this morning and I’m really having fun and learning a lot about obedience. Lucy has her ASCA-CD but that is the only obedience we have done. Oh we have done rally, Levi has his RE and Lucy has her RA but I think we rather squeaked by on those.

Chase is really coming along on his obedience. I am going to start doing box work with him. Sits, downs, stands in the box and from a distance. We need to work his ‘go outs’ so he’ll spin and sit. It’s too much like flyball for him to run across the ring, grab the treat, then come back. He sure is fast though and he loves it! He is not even in Novice yet but we are working all levels with him, open and utility too.

Tatum did well, too. She got to play with Rift, her new border collie friend. And, what is nice, is she was able to pay attention to me and work with me, in very brief increments, while Rift was still in the room. I even was luring her into a heel by me with a treat for a few steps at a time and she was following me nicely. And she is starting to play with me, and even choosing me for play over other dogs. I think once we get competing it will be hard for her to focused on me and not want to play with the other dogs. She is not as focus as Chase the border collie, but that is to be expected.

So anyway I was on the go most of the day and now I’m tired and Oh My Gosh it’s already 8:30 and time for bed! Work tomorrow. We had a fun weekend, though. Tomorrow I’m going to have a private with my amazing trainer so I can make sure I’m getting Tatum off to the right start. Yeah I have trained many a dog in my time but I want to be completely open to new and different ways of training so I do it right with her.