Between the successes last weekend, our private lesson and watching all the dogs at the trial this weekend, I am totally inspired to really get out and work my dogs. The problem with that is where? We are in the middle of another snowfall expecting 6 inches or more, so its hard to find a space outside, and my house is just not spaced for indoor work. Nancy did give me some smaller space heeling work, so the corgis will get some training now everyday.
Remember that goal list I didn't make a the beginning of the year? Well its starting to take shape in my head. It's pushing me to get off my butt and get going, so that is what I am going to do.
First off I want to train more tricks. I want to become better at shaping, so I am going to pick a trick to try to teach each month. Not sure what I am going to start with, but I hope to have a finished trick by the end of February. I would like to teach each trick to all 4 dogs, but I am not sure I am up to that. We shall see.
With the help of some really wonderful trainers, I am going to clean up my body language and try to help my dogs get a better picture for heeling and agility. Once they get a clear consistant picture, they should get a better understanding of what they need to do. Truthfully, I don't think my handling alone caused Magic's lagging issues, but I do know it contributes. He falls behind I glance back at him, which clearly is a deceleration cue, so he gets slower. It makes sense, it's just really tough for me since I want to see my dogs. But if I can help Magic enjoy heeling as much as Grace seems to (usually) then perhaps we will have less issue. On the other hand I have trust issues with Grace so am always watching her too. Its a bad pattern on my part. I am going to use more matches to try to improve with both of the dogs.
And, even though Magic still needs his AKC CDX, we are going to start working on utility. Directed jumping shouldn't be an issue, but the go out piortion definately is. Retrieveing the glove is not a problem, but understanding how to mark the desired object is. Articles, picking up and retriving metal, not a problem, but we need to learn scent discrimination.
Its a lot to do, but I am just going to take it in small pieces, one bite at a time. Can I skip work to get started?