Yes, it's true. I went out to Mary's for agility today... for the third day in a row. We are really on an agility kick right now. The reason I went was to get a jump on Cedar's contacts. Since I haven't had them at home, it's been hard to train consistently and I don't really know how to do it... so I went to the expert for help!
We worked on the A-Frame first. Cedar still doesn't totally understand the value of 2 on/2 off position, so we worked a lot on really making it worth her while. We introduced tugging instead of a treat reward; letting her tug while in 2 on/2 off position as long as she kept her back feet on the contact zone. That seemed to help her out some. I need to practice more on making her a more enthusiastic tugger. She loves her toys but doesn't tug very hard. So we'll be working on this in the next couple weeks. We also did a little jump exercise to break up the monotony of contact training, starting in 2 on/2 off position on the A-Frame and doing a short sequence of jumps in a tight circle. She aced it.
Next, we went to the teeter. Since we hadn't trained the teeter in about a month, we started easy with the teeter significantly lowered. Cedar didn't even bat an eye at the motion and easily found the 2 on/2 off position. We gradually raised the teeter up over the course of the session and she did great! She still needs lots more reinforcement, though. It still makes her nervous. However, she learned today that she can control when the teeter tips, so I think that helped her. She was a lot more confident after that.
We worked a little on the dog walk, which highlighted just how much work we need to do to solidify Cedar's contact behavior. :) She was unsure what exactly I was asking, but we worked through it and I did a lot of reinforcing the correct position.
Last, we did a few weave drills. Mary was very impressed with how well Cedar weaves. She does an excellent job with rating her speed and hitting the correct entries, even with obstacles before and after. What a good girl she is!
It was a lot of fun, but a lot of work training (in the heat) for the whole hour! Cedar was pretty exhausted by the end, but tried her hardest to the very last exercise.
A few photos:
Food Pix - #FoodPorn
4 hours ago