Set up – This week’s challenge is Sequencing an exercise. You can train this alone or with the help of a friend. If training with a friend, they will be calling the exercise as a judge would do in the ring.
Purpose – This drill teaches your dog how to perform an exercise to your criteria when in the ring.
|Tips on success – the key to sequencing skills into an exercise is not letting any f your criteria for an individual skill deteriorate. For example: : the recall exercise is composed of many individual skills. It contains, in order, a line-up (getting ready for the exercise), a sit stay, coming toward you when called, sitting in front of you , and then the finish. Although those skills are obvious, your criteria for each skill is much more in depth. For instance, my criteria for the line up is that my dog moves with me to the starting location with attention and sits straight and immediately as I come to a stop. I do not give my dog any additional help getting next to me, keeping attention or sitting fast and straight.
Reward your dog – Anytime your dog performs a skill or the exercise successfully, reward your dog by releasing him to a toy/treats either in your hand or off the floor. Resist the temptation to only reward AFTER the exercise is completed. In order to maintain all the skills in an exercise, all the skills need to be rewarded on a random basis!
Different levels of testing – After you have successfully completed an easy scenario, “bump it up” a notch by increasing the difficulty of the distraction during the exercise. As your dog gains confidence, add more distractions and make the training more difficult . Always reward your dog for a job well done.
Goal – to build your dog’s confidence when doing an exercise.