Friday, July 27, 2012

I started taking Jeep to agility class last November. He basically did not know a thing about agility. He sure has the attitude and drive for work. We have had so much fun working together! I am amazed at how fast he has progressed. This coming October he will compete in his first AKC trial, which is just a month short of a year training for this event. 
The next session of agility is an intermediate level and we will continue to learn and grow. 
I know that my boy Max, who is pictured above on this blog would also love to get back into agility. As Max and Jeep are at the same level, I will be alternating weeks, this way they will both get the training and practice that they need before the trial. Max is a fast learner also but does not have the same drive as Jeep. Not quite as fast but is accurate and listens. He is more the type of dog that wants to run with you rather than ahead of you. Jeep is extremely fast and often ahead of me, so I need to perfect directing him from a distance. He is still young, only 17 months and often has some independent thinking that I need to deal with. Occasionally he will decide on an obstacle that is not in the direction that we are heading. My trainer says that I need to run as fast as I can and when he sees me heading in a different direction he will run to catch up with me and stay on course. We tried this in class and I was amazed how well it worked. Once he saw me take off and go in a direction other than the one he wanted to go in, he turned and caught me and did the complete course correctly. He is such a fun dog. Next session it will be Max's turn and he probably will have some catching up to do as it has been a couple of years since he attended class. We have practiced some here at home but he needs to practice in the class setting which is more like a show setting for him. It will be interesting to see how quickly he will remember. I think that latent learning will kick in and he will be fine.
The challenge for me will be to adjust to the type of running each dog will execute. They are so different so will need to be really aware of what we are doing.
I will be back here in a couple of weeks to let you know how Max performed and if I think he will be able to compete in October. It sure would be fun to take both boys and give it a try. Wouldn't it be great if they both did nice clean runs in their first trial! The weave poles will be the hardest obstacle for both boys !"Weave Poles"

                                                          The above picture is Jeep.

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