Podge to [Hopefully] Pro

A Spaniel's Agility Journey...(2)

Week 2 Bracken's second agility session was, again fuelled by chicken, which she was very interested in (possibly more so than the jumps and tunnels!) We started with jumps one and two at different angles which seemed to throw her a little and resulted in her walking round the jumps in search of chicken!

There were times when her indecision was definitely down to my rubbish handling, but it's also really apparent that she has done absolutely no shaping. This is a huge challenge for me, being used to Ruby who has been shaping since she was 8 weeks old. It took some doing, but eventually Bracken realised that, in order to get the chicken she had to go over the jumps and once this realisation had sunk in, she was eager to please.

On our second run of the class we did some more tunnel work and then linked the tunnel with a jump either end, before adding the first two jumps to the beginning of the sequence. By our third run, Bracken seemed more driven and had gained a bit of speed (something she wasn't able to do with her previously podgy physique!)

Between runs we worked on settling in the crate, another of Bracken's challenges and she was rewarded for calmness. This is slowly improving and I'm most definitely keen to keep this kind of training up with both dogs. I've seen a huge improvement in Ruby's ability to settle and feel this is another little goal to work towards with Bracken. We borrowed a little cone to work on some shaping this week and have made a list of other behaviours to shape, with the help of Dawn. We're also booked into this weekend's Rally Workshop which I'm really looking forward to. Will be good for Bracken and I to spend time, just 1-2-1 and I'm hoping the workshop will help with her focus and our bonding.



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