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Posts posted by alligande

  1. I will always remember an agility friend of mine get more and more frustrated as she struggled to complete her NATCH, her dog was already an agility champion in USDAA and AKC (she runs medium dogs) and that elusive chances cue drove her to distraction, she is an amazing handler and with a younger dog gone on to be picked for a world team, and did eventually get her NATCH. I suspect chances is the reason she no longer competes in NADAC as it requires skills that are just not needed in other venues.

  2. That was a great run. No one should ever question their skills when it comes to NADAC chances, I am convinced it is the hardest class there is in agility and requires a level of specialist training that is not used anywhere else. When I competed in NADAC we were in elite jumpers, regular and tunnelers and had not entered a single chances class, there is so much to teach a young dog and my focus was USDAA and learning how to handle my speed demon on that style course. Ironically today in Spain people think I have great distance skills, and I think we would still struggle with a novice chances course!

  3. I was told never to slow my dog down, advice I took but it can be interpreted differently it is not having an out of control dog, but teaching them the skills he needs, I did a lot of "capping drive" which is a concept that comes from the protection sports, they need to learn to think while high as a kite. I also worked through Linda Mecklbergs jumping skills which was a game changer in his independent abilities, a lot of dogs struggle when you add handler motion and it is a skill that needs to be taught.


    I had a weekly trainer who told me to slow him down not run flat out as I had more speed than I needed, but I also worked with a "top" trainer who's opinion was entirely different, she wanted speed and a win, I chose her advice , what I find interesting is I thought he was fast when we started competing at 20 months, when I look back at video he looks so slow, he will be 8 in August and is faster than ever as he has gained confidence and skills. That said when things go wrong he looks like an out of control beast, he leaps, barks and occasionally bites when I get things wrong, it is always done out of frustration and he is always right, which is sad but very true and I made a decision to allow him to express his frustration with me, I regard it as training for me, handle well and I have focused silent dog, handle poorly and I might get bit!!


    With my youngster I have a slightly different problem, he has always been a very mature dog and he has a huge work ethic, but at 12.5 months his growth plates are obviously not closed, vet and my dog physio both think it could be another 2 months so we have to wait to learn weaves and contacts. He is also a very different dog to teach, he starts out slow and thoughtful, I was actually concerned that he would more suited for obedience than agility, but once we got going it was obvious once he understands the trick then he just gets faster and loves to run.

  4. Looks like you are in New Hampshire, don't know if this place is close to you https://www.alldogsgym.com I used to compete there. NH has a lot agility going on and some good instructors, I was always jealous of what was available compared to my options in RI, perhaps go to a USDAA trial at All dogs and chat to people and get instructor recommendations. Personal recommendations are the best source of finding a good instructor. I have had personal experience of the frustration of bad instruction, sometimes it's best just to move on.

  5. It is possible that he might adapt quickly to being a house dog. We have had a couple of young foster dogs who had lived outside on chains (we live in Mallorca) and neither of them had any problems figuring out that they went outside to pee. We did crate them and watch them as if they were puppies. They also both quickly decided being a house dog was not a bad way to live.

    The organizer of the rescue I used to volunteer for in the US had a blind border collie who always amazed me, he played ball with my dogs, ran around the yard, went hiking. He was a very cool dog, he did get grumpy when you moved things and he walked into them but he used to learn new environments very quickly. He did struggle with stairs.

  6. Thanks for sharing this Mr McCaig, I love watching foster dogs come out of their shells, and learn to be feisty. We had a young border collie who was maybe a year old, when he came to us he was unable to walk on a leash, would not accept pate from my husband, he was just a typical shut down young border collie. Within a month he was a monster, leaping of the furniture, trying to sit on my husbands head, all round good fun. He already had a home waiting for him Germany (lots of dogs get adopted in to Germany form all over Spain but they have to wait for someone to escort them on the flight as it is really cheap to fly them as luggage but very expensive as cargo) if he had not I knew it was time that we could start training and learning about house manners and being a good pet. I was concerned that the flight would set him back, but he got of the plane full of confidence and has never looked back. It just took a month of being very patient and allowing him all the space he needed.

  7. I having a rubber chomping machine in my house as well, my almost one year old can destroy rubber toys in amazing speed, he did some serious damage to the handle of a Jolly ball in an hour. Current popular toys in this house are kong wubbers, with and without the balls that go inside, we have a couple of dead skins that they love. Some random rubber toys that have survived the killer jaws and fleece tug toys that seem to hold better than anything else. I use 2 different types of 4 strand braiding for my tugs and they hold up to some tough treatment.

    Neither of my dogs has much time for regular kongs with or without food.

  8. This is about pups changing characters. I have a pup from working dogs, the litter was bred as it was time for the breeders to have a new dog. Originally they were going to keep a bitch and said I could have the first pick of the boys. As I could not meet the pups I asked her to pick for me based on what I wanted my dog for (agility and pet) so out of the 5 she picked 2 who she felt where her favorites, another one she said was going to make a fine dog, and 2 she felt were going to fireside ornaments they were so lazy and she also thought they weren't very smart. By the time we went to Scotland to pick up the pup the dynamics had changed the two bitches in the litter had left and the two lounge lizards had become the naughty pups, who were leading the rest in mischief and were being kept in a separate crate as they caused so much mayhem! the breeders had decided to keep these two as they were so much fun.

  9. My older dog only likes to eat at night, he does not like eating breakfast so I only feed him once a day. He has always been a fussy eater, he won't eat some kibble, and I do mean would rather starve, if another dog is in the house and applies any pressure or perhaps just looks at him even from 20ft he just walks away from his food, with a toy he would never back down and is a dog that wins squabbles but he just doesn't care about food.

    My 11 month old is very skinny, he eats plenty, I have offered him more but he doesn't eat it so I am not worrying it about. He is still growing and will be a big boy, but he is always going to be slender it is his build.

  10. I have ordered Dawn's book which at least will give me some new ideas. The trainer I occasionally work with in England has offered to walk me through the process online if I don't find anything organized. She trained her youngster the concept in 2 months and had it proofed and solid in 4 using stride regulators.

    Planning on starting his running Aframe around 14 months and will probably begin his stopped contacts in the next month (he turned 11 months yesterday)

  11. Check out Daisy Peels online classroom http://classroom.daisypeel.com/courses/mjs-foundation-flatwork/ she is a great teacher, another online course is http://www.qme-agility.co.uk/training.php.

    The best way to start agility is "on the flat" which both these courses would get you started well with. My puppy is almost 11 months and will not see weave poles until I am sure his growth plates are closed, and has not jumped anything higher than 15cm and won't till those growth plates close. The only reason we even have the bar up is so he can start to understand the concepts he is now learning.

    Learning agility from a book is hard if you have never done it before, but "agility right from the start" is good, it is the book I used for my older dogs foundation.

    There are no real good YouTube resources that provide a reliable guide for training, most of the videos you see are videos people have shot for online courses!

    If you can't go to in person class then online classes especially if you audit are really good value for money and will help you understand the concepts involved.

  12. Thanks ladies, I have been unsure about Rachel Sanders DVD as it was published 9 years ago at the start of the running contact craze and there seems to have been so many developments and ideas on how to get the perfect running contact.

    I don't want a running dog walk as I have ended up with another large border collie and as a short middle aged woman I don't stand a chance without a stop, so Ms Trkman is out.

    Kristi can you tell me anything more about Dawn Weavers techniques on the frame, does she use stride regulators? It is an expensive book so want to make sure it is a good investment.

  13. I have been giving a lot of thought to my youngsters contacts and decided that I will train a stopped contact on the dog walk and a running Aframe, BUT I can't find any current info on training a running Aframe, Rachel Sanders DVD is the only thing I can find and that was published in 2008 and there has to be a wealth of knowledge about what works now as it has become so much more common place.

    All the online courses are really about a running dog walk which is a very different set of criteria.


    So any suggestions? You all helped me find a great foundation course so hopping I might get lucky a second time.

  14. A border collie can live very happily in a city and they can make good pets, what most of them are going to be though is intense dogs who do get bored easily if you do not provide enough stimulation for them. My border collies are pets, they have never worked sheep, my youngster who is now almost 10 months comes from good working lines, he is a great pet but needs a good walk and some training every day to keep him that way. If I don't make the time to work that very sharp mind of is, we pay by him finding his own entertainment. Right now I am supposed to be working and both my border collies are fast asleep on the sofa. We will play in a little bit and then they will happily watch tv with us this evening.

  15. I suspect they were just trying to standardize the rules between the countries, until a couple of years ago each country had its own rules regarding the age of puppies. Most people only run into an issue if they fly as the airlines are really strict on the rules. I have driven to and from Spain a number of times to the UK and the older dog has been to france, spain and italy and the only time his passport has been looked at is at the ferry port going to the UK on the way out they don't even ask if you have a passport.

    My friends issues stem from the fact that person looking after the puppy could not find a vet willing to do the rabies injection before 16 weeks so he now has to wait till she 19 weeks to get her.

  16. My puppy is now 9 months old, when we got him at 10 weeks he spent a lot of time in his crate. He was either playing with us, outside with us or in the crate. This prevented him from making house training mistakes and getting himself into mischief. Over time we build up how much time he spent out of the crate, at 9 months he sleeps out of the crate at night but still goes in when left at home alone. He has always been a good puppy, but even good puppies get into mischief as they are curious playful creatures, and just when you think they have forgotten all about a favorite forbidden item, you find them with it (my husband rescued my underwear as I was typing this ;) ) basically puppy raising is all about vigilance.

  17. Thanks for the info. The puppy is in Florida staying with a friend of theirs and she could not find a vet who would do the rabies jab any younger than 16 weeks, so I was curious as to what was the norm. EU wide law is currently puppies can be vaccinated at 12 weeks, with a 3 week wait, then their passport is valid, same applies to older dogs, 3 weeks after rabies travel documents are valid. What is weird is you can import a young puppy into the US just seems to be a problem exporting!

  18. What is the age that a puppy can have the rabies vaccine in the US? A friend of mine is bringing a puppy from the US and cant have the puppy for another month as they have been told that the pup cant have the jab until it is 16 weeks. (then there is the 3 week wait for it to be valid)

    Rabies has been standardized in Europe to pups getting their vaccine at 12 weeks and able to travel at 15 weeks, which was when he was hoping to get the pup.



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