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AGILITY today!! Just wanted to share that tonight is Diesel's first beginner class. I held off on teaching him anything specific other then come to hand. I'm pretty excited. :D


On a side note, I took 6 months off of agility with River and we just started back up 2 weeks ago - dropping back a class because I felt she needed some more confidence with the obstacles. I know what I'm doing, but she doesn't. So far we've had a great 2 weeks.


The best news is that *I* get to go to agility twice a week now :rolleyes:

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Guest TheRuffMuttGang

Go Diesel! Have fun!! I just *love* having an agility place that allows memberships which grants me permission to use the field as much as I want 365 days a year from 9am to 9pm. Now, if only I could get by badonkadonk in gear to actually USE the place more than twice a week.

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I also have that option of renting out the agility barn each week for a specific hour. I've done it before with Jaida, but am too busy with work right now to take the time off (it's a daytime thing). But I'm happy to have that option available to me - esp when it's only 3 miles up the road. :rolleyes:

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Have fun! You are so lucky to have an indoor place, we don't here, so this week is our last class till spring... :rolleyes: Oh, well, we still have our funny little home-made course with flower-pot jumps and kiddie toy tunnels to play on! Keep us posted with Diesel's progress, he is just such a handsome boy!

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Beginner class (which I've taken 4 times prior) goes like this:


1. Instructor talks about important agility info like if your dog is fat, how important attention is, use of treats, etc etc. First 10-15mins.


2. Everyone (6 dogs) lines up in a row with dogs on leash. Then to illustrate how focused your dog is, you parade your dog down the row of dogs 1x1 keeping your dog's focus on you - you are allowed to use treats or any method possible.


Diesel does great, eyes on me the WHOLE time, I did have a treat in my hand and he knew it.


3. Then, 1x1 everyone puts dog on stay and gets as far away from dog as you feel possible, then call your dog. Repeat other direction.


Diesel doesn't have a very long or solid stay, but I was able to go further then the end of the leash confidently and of course he has an excellent recall.


4. Then we do restrained release, again 1x1. Instructor holds your dog, you start running then you call your dog so that it runs with you. Repeat.


Yeah... Diesel is much more enthusiastic then River. She's controlled, meticulous. He's going to be FAST. :D


5. Now it's time to get busy. Practice come to hand.


Diesel already knew this, it was the 1 thing I did teach him.


6. Practice touching target (yogurt lid) in hand, on ground and if possible send to target.


Diesel was sending to target within the first 45secs and with fairly good enthusiasm (much more then River did).


7. Lastly, since dogs were nice and mentally tired, we practice stays individually throughout the barn.


This is a most excellent exercise for Diesel who has a short stay and I can only prance and skip around him reserved and HAVE to watch him because he gets up. (Whereas River has the most awesome stay both distance and duration - I leave her on stay while I walk courses in class). So I know that stay is my homework for the week.


I was VERY pleased with the evening. Diesel was restless while the instructor talked - he tried play bowing to the dog 2 chairs down from us. But as long as I was the automated treat machine, I had his interest. He also would sniff the ground if I wasn't dispensing treats or asking anything of him, but I imagine that will wear off in a few classes.


Oh yeah. There's no peeing on any equipment or poles inside the barn. I knew this would be an issue for Diesel who likes to mark where ever we go. So at the beginning before class started, I walked him around the barn, next to poles, contacts and the fav peeing item, tunnels. He tried to pee 5 different times, but a quick yank on the leash (to pull him off balance) and a stern NO! seemed to get the idea across. I'll probably do it again next week - allow access with intentions of correcting him and then we should be good to go. There's a $5 fine each time the dog pees. :rolleyes:

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