a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Boost's Contacts

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Boost's Contacts

SUMMARY: This gal is going to be good!

Ooooh, the Booster is getting so good on contacts! Ever since a couple of weeks ago, when everything seemed to click for her, she's been getting faster and faster. She seems to be very reliably hurrying to the end of all three contacts and waiting with two-on, two-off. She's doing a little bit of a nose dip, but I'm not enforcing a full nose touch to a target. It feels as if it's not needed, she's so thorough at it at the moment, so I hope I'm not making an incorrect assumption that many better handlers & trainers than I am have already thought through.

Last week I raised my adjustable-height teeter up to 4 notches (so the upper end is about two feet above the ground) from only 2 notches, and it slowed her down but speed gradually picked up and then she was doing her teeters faster than I can get Tika to do them most of the time, even revved up and on the lowered teeter. Yesterday I bumped it up to 5 notches, so the top end is over waist high. Put her over it carefully a couple of times and you could see that she realized her timing was off, and then BOOM! just like that she was running to the end and slamming it just like before. I'll leave it at that height for a couple of days for her to feel comfortable there, then bump it again. I'm actually not sure how many notches there are (they're hidden when the teeter is at lower heights), but the top end will end up about midsternum height (says the woman who ran into one once so she knows), so we must be getting close.

On the A-frame, she's still not blasting to the bottom, but she's more and more confident going over it, and I think I've got it at about 5'6". Just another 8 inches to go to full USDAA height (which is really high, really).

Her dogwalk just gets faster and faster and I've been trying to send her over it as well as running with her or running past her, and it looks so good!

I'm hoping this isn't the calm before the storm when all heck breaks loose.

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