At home Ruger is really pretty good about doing go-outs. Even when I take him to different locations he's pretty decent. At shows, he will get sullen and go about half way out (just inches past the jumps) and turn with his head hung and stare at me.
What I've just started doing, to hopefully put more pressure on him at home, is... I've attached a flexi-leash to him. Now when I send him he has the "tug" of the leash that he must pull against to drive to the gating.
At first, he would not even go (he was understandably confused). But we kept working on it, and finally he is beginning to understand that he must go and he will feel that "tug" but he still must go out there. IMHO, it is forcing him to THINK and making him make the decision to continue going out.
What I want to know is... am I doing this correctly?? and also, can/should I do corrections with the leash. For instance if he goes part way and stops, should I give the leash a tug and send him again, or will tugging the leash only bring him back to me and confuse him further?
We have a trial on Dec 1 & 2. That is my time frame to work on this.
ANY help on this appreciated. Thank you!!!
What you are describing is a confidence issue, not an issue of understanding. I'm not sure the leash thing will transfer over to the ring.
What he needs is lots of practice with lots of pressure & distractions and really the only way to get that is to show unfortunately. Since you don't have that luxury, I'd practice go outs at agility when he's amped for agility and there is a lot of noise and commotion going on around him. I'd practice go outs at a baseball game when kids are running around the crowd is yelling. I'd ask your friends/family/students to really put pressure on him during practice by 1) playing loudly with their own dogs (woohoo, yea, squeak, squeak, squeak), 2) work their dogs in the ring when you are working Ruger and I mean work right in the ring, right next to him, especially around the area of the go out, 3) even trying to lure him off the go out with food and toys (don't call his name...that isn't fair but everything else goes). You have to think really deviously. ;D Really, the more pressure you put on him now, the less it will be a problem at a show. No you can never recreate a show environment but you can do lots of things that will build his confidence so that the show environment isn't so stressful.
We have tapes of show sounds or Halloween sounds that we put right at the go out post. We put chairs inside the ring along the go out gates sometimes we put people in them. We put blow up bop 'em clowns in the ring. We put those noise making Halloween and Christmas toys in the ring. We bang trash can lids like cymbols in a march band. We wave flags or umbrellas and post them along the end of the ring to draw the dog off the center. Really...the more outrageous it sounds, the better proofing it is. ;D
<br /><br />Lydia, Murray & Essy in AZ<br /><br />Clear Creek's Mad About You CDX RE NJP OAP OFP ASCA CDX GSN RSN NGC TGO TNO OAC NJC HPN PS1 JHE<br /><br />Larkspur's Essence RE NAC TNN JHE
Linda that is exactly what Mike did with Caleb at class this morning. Because Caleb knows to do it at class, at my building, other places he must learn that no matter what is going on when I tell him to run there is no option at all that he must run. The secure, good place is at the gating. When Mike or when I put pressure on the long line and Caleb gives up or chooses to slow down I get his collar and run out with him telling him to run and then reward like crazy at the spot where his is suppose to run to. I am also adding pressure in distractions that he must run by toys, food, etc and any slow down warrents a correction--me getting his collar and hauling his little yellow butt out there and then tons of praise and food at the turn and sit point. Lots of ways to teach go-outs. The challenge is finding what works for the individual dog.
Lydia, what you are describing really isn't his problem. He does care at all about noises, and all of the places we show it's basically obedience only (quiet conditions) and I have and do use distractions such as having a person close to him, the cat out in the ring, etc. Noises are not a distraction to him.
I know it's a confidence issue. That's why the long line was suggested as a way to put added pressure on him going out.
The BC people around here will even get to the point that they will physically hold back on the dogs as they go out. I don't think I could do that to Ruger... but may try working up to it, teaching him to drive toward the gating no matter the cost. (ie, me hanging on the end of the leash).
This is very hard, especially since I train alone. Fortunately, beginning in December, I will have a couple folks training with me, and we will all be distractions for each other, but I'm on my own for the Savannah show.
Originally Posted by raian
I have seen this and have done this with retrieving--you hold them back and get them so hyped up that they fly out. Because of the confidence issue with Caleb, I have not tried that particular part but I have done the pressure on the long line.
The folks I train with are really big on the holding them back and pressure on leash, making the dog almost drag you to the go-out spot. It works, that's for sure!
Karen and<br />UAG1 SHR UCDX GRCH Tracker Belle of Bedford RAE JH CDX TT WCX WC CGC (Belle)<br /><br />UCD SHR GRCH BIMBS BBI Belle's Kodiak Dreamweaver JH UD RAE TT WC CGC (Kodi)<br /><br />SHR UCH BBI Ponderosa's Big Blond Guy JH RE TT WC CGC (Hoss)
And Marcia certainly has nice go-outs with her Golden boy that is for sure!Originally Posted by Belles mom