Friday, July 08, 2011

Weave Entries (and Exits)

SUMMARY: Some exercises.
Because Boost missed a lot of weave entries last weekend, I decided to work on weave entries with both dogs for a bit. Again. I am so tired of weave entry drills, but it's been long enough now since I really drilled entries that I'm ready to face them again.

Here's how I started.
I added the bonus of having the weaves end with barely two feet between the last pole and a large flower pot, so the dog has to wrap tightly around the last pole to get back to me without popping out early.  It's good to practice this (as we learned in class last night--actually Boost did very well on close-quarter exits and entries).

I want to aim the dog at the first pole because that's what I want her to focus on, not on the gap. That's because there are a lot of gaps but only one first pole. From a distance of 10 feet, of course, I'm not going to be able to ensure that's where she's looking, but it gives her a chance to think about it.

I also make sure that my body and shoulders are facing that first pole. I release and send with my left arm and leg, but don't take more steps towards the poles.

As the dog makes the entry, I turn my body (feet and shoulders) and run parallel to the weaves so that I can toss a quick reward at the end of the poles and so that the dog is used to me moving with her.

Next, I will do the same pattern with the dog on my right. I expect this to be harder.

Next, I will do a similar pattern arcing around the other side of the poles, with the dog first on my right, then on my left.

I intend to repeat similar patterns from different distances. F'rinstance, can I stand right up next to the last pole with the dog on my opposite side and send the dog from there? (So she's going almost paralell the length of the poles back to the beginning.) Can I do it from 30 feet away, not just 10 feet?

I also intend to do it with the dog starting at the end with the flower pot.

I'm doing this with 6 poles because I just don't want to do that many sets of full 12 weaves.

I will next add similar patterns, but instead of going straight to the poles, add a jump in between. Of course this would be from much farther away.  Also probably do it from a tunnel. My goal is to get the dog up to speed so she's going full tilt and has to think and gather to make the entries.

I'll mix it up with doing sets of 12 here and there to keep them used to the longer sets, and I will also try some patterns around the full set of 12. Boost seems to make her entrances better when there are only 6 poles; maybe she is dazzled by all the gaps in a set of 12 poles and can't process where to start.

4 comments:

  1. Ooooooh. I hate those kinds of weave entries! Neither of my dogs are good at even gentle soft side entries. I should work at it more. Shoulda coulda woulda.

    So cool to see dogs nail them though. Would love to see some video of Boost and Tika doing this -- would inspire me to get to work on this stuff... hint hint :-)

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  2. Oh, mannnn, you AND my agility instructor are puttin' on the pressure--OK, tomorrow, video camera. Wait--I think I'm gone all day. OK, maybe sunday.

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  3. Yay!! I will be happy to wait until Sunday -- or even Monday, if you insist. :D

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  4. Sunday works for me...LOL

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