SUMMARY: Four agility dogs, different results.
My first two agility dogs, Remington and Jake, hardly ever knocked bars. It just wasn't something we ever worried about. Tika knocks bars. Looks like Boost is a bar knocker, too.
Some numbers: Remington's USDAA Starters/Novice record is vague; Jumpers didn't count for anything back then, so all that mattered was placement, which was time plus faults. I didn't track the faults. He placed anywhere from 1st of 13 to 3rd of 5 before he moved up to Advanced, where he quickly Qed in 2 of 4 Jumpers to move up to Masters (things wuz different then).
Then, he often didn't make time. (This was the long period when I was discovering that he slowed down in reaction to my stress.) When I finally figured that out--and how to deal with it--well, he Qed his last four Masters Jumpers in a row after Qing only 2 of the previous 17.
In all those Advanced and Masters runs, he knocked a bar only once, and he was running with someone else at the time.
Jake didn't come to live with me until he already had his novice AD title. With him, so much faster than Remington at the time, my problems were all learning to handle all over again; lots of runouts and refusals. In the 56 Masters and P3 Jumpers that we did, the only knocked bar I have recorded was after he had already run past a jump and then knocked the bar backjumping.
Tika. Well. 21 starters/novice Jumpers before she got a clean one--actually got TWO that same weekend. Then, in advanced, she Qed her second one, and I thought I was on a roll. ...I was, and it was all rapidly downhill. 13 Masters Jumpers until our first clean one, and that's what had held us back from our MAD forever. Then another 7 until our next clean one. Then the legs are sporadic--10 of the next 24. This spring, we got five--FIVE!--in a row, and I thought I was on a roll! Well... you know what happens... downhill again.
The Booster isn't as bad as Tika, but probably only because I'm not making as many handling errors (I hope). She got 1 out of 4 Startes Jumpers; knocked bars (and other problems) in the others.
Has earned only one Advanced Jumpers Q out of 11 tries. That's enough to get us into Masters if we can get that third Standard leg! (2 out of 16 tries so far) ...Two more chances this weekend at TRACS in Woodland.