Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Earth to Rugby

Rugby was exploring all the different ways he could go over the high jump today. He did the first one just fine. The second time, he went out got the dumbell, looked at me then came back. The third time he went out got the dumbell and stood and stared at me on the other side.

I ignored him and let him stand there while I walked over to our training bag and out came the micro-prong collar and the 15ft lunge line. Put them on Rugby, who had continued to stand there like he was frozen in time and gave him a stay command. He didn't hold the stay so was put back twice before he decided to participate. Then out to the end of the 15ft and 'Rugby come'. Once we were back on the other side of the jump I sent him again, and he made no mistake this time to run as fast as he could out and back. And again he did well. Third time I sent him and he didn't move from my side. So he was corrected for that too and brought back over the jump.

Rugby was trying very hard to get a grip on what exactly the high jump should be. He made great strides today though and ended with a couple great trips over the jump without the lunge line on.

He did everything else very well. The broad jump he didn't refuse at all, went over everysingly time and quite enthusiastically too. We worked especially on getting a straight front. I watched him closely to see hoe he was going over the jump, and see what it is about the way he does it that doesn't put him where he needs to be. I used the larger broad jump boards that we don't use and put them out strategically to influence the loop that he makes after the jump and that did the trick. Straight fronts repeatedly. After a couple successes I moved the boards back a little and he still did well. Tomorrow we will take them away completely and see how he does.

I think I figured out our heeling problem too. My steps are too big. When we were first working on it I was being extra careful to take small steps so I didn't leave Rugby behind, but I have sort of stopped paying attention to how I was walking and I am quite positive that my steps were significantly larger. This would explain how he was acting almost in frantically, because while he could keep up with me he couldn't react to my quick enough. I have been taking smaller steps though and he has improved dramatically. :/ Sorry Rugby!

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