Cisu is nine years old and has her OTCH, Schutzhund 3 and FH titles, but she’s definitely not ready for retirement. So…what to do with an older lady who is probably past her jumping days, but has an excellent brain attached to an enthusiastic body?
How about the new AKC non-titling class, Advanced Teamwork? If you have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about, check out this video with Laura Romanik and her very successful obedience sheltie: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_bfLdzBuk1c If you prefer to do the reading, the rules are in Chapter 15, page 67, under non regular classes: http://www.akc.org/pdfs/rulebooks/RO2999.pdf
I’ve had my eye on this class for awhile but it seemed like a lot of training for a non regular class. Now I’ve changed my mind – it looks like an awesome challenge for us, and Cisu has enough titles attached to her name already. I’ve even found a trial where we can debut – that’s in July of 2012. Plenty of time to get it worked out, more or less.
The purpose of this video is not to show the finished exercises; that is already done very well in Laura’s video above. The purpose of Cisu’s video is to show just how much new training you can get done in very little time, how much fun the two of you can have, and how you can handle it when your dog makes a mistake. As you can see, Cisu tries her hardest all the time, so there is no logical reason to ever punish her.
Today’s training session was about eigth minutes long. In that eight minutes, we worked on every new exercise except the baseball diamond gloves and the scent articles. Good training is fast paced but does not drag on forever. It is reasonable to expect very good work for ten minutes; it is less reasonable to expect that for thirty minutes straight. And really, at the ten minute mark your dog’s brain is going to be pretty full and needs time to digest.
If you want to have some fun, go through the video and identify what exercises I’m teaching with the various things we do together; note that i’m often working on two or three exercises at the same time. For example, I’ll do a moving stand, and then I’ll switch over to position changes.
Here’s Cisu in week 2 of her training.