Thursday, February 19, 2009
If there was one obstacle I was determined Secret was going to do well, it was the See Saw. Terra has a terrible SeeSaw (excuse the pun) and this was mainly because I asked for too much speed, and also changed her criteria from an original sit to a down position. For Secret I knew what I wanted- a four on the board position at the end of the board, running across the whole thing, in essence a 'sliding' SS. I started teaching this in two ways; firstly playing the well known 'Bang' game with her. This involved starting low and encouraging the dog to jump on the side of the See Saw and bang it down into position. I had done wobble board exercises with Secret when she was young, on cement, so this didn't worry her and she was soon happily reaching up and pulling the board down and banging it into position. I played this game with her because it is very popular and is supposed to help the dog to increase its confidence on what can be a scary obstacle. I am not sure how much this actually helps, but it doesn't seem to harm. The rewards for the bang game are given on the SeeSaw, with one being thrown off at the end to set up for another repetition. The next exercise I did was to hold the end of the SeeSaw, leave her in a start line wait and call her over the board, lowering it rapidly when she got to the end. This is supposed to encourage the dog to ignore the tip and run to the end. I did this many many times but I still don't think it achieved what it was supposed to as the SeeSaw I have ended up with is a run to just past the tip point, brief hesitation and then run into position. This is not what I want in the long term, but I am not going to force too much speed on this obstacle at this point in time because I learnt (the hard way) that is a good way to make unreliable obstacle performance!
Posted by Kriszty at 9:06 PM