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Cliff Hangers

Posted on 10/27/11 37 Comments

Okay, so if you don’t like cliffhangers, maybe you shouldn’t read today’s blog:). The first “leave ’em hanging” video I am going to show you is a new one I just posted to my Facebook Page. It is a two parter – here is part one, in order to see part two you have to log onto my Facebook page and hit the “Like” button.

But just so I am not a complete meanie, let me share with you a video from someone on Facebook that did watch the “part two” tutorial and later the same day taught her 9 year old Rottie how to do it. It was so easy she could teach it in just two short training sessions, how cool is THAT?

And how cool is Vikka, the tailed up Rottie?

Cliff hanger number two.

This is a leads me to this video cliff hanger for a Puppy Peaks segment (I told you these were cliffhangers!) Swagger has given me new challenges. A recent one was the way he sits in anticipation of something he really wants. We affectionally refer to it as a “Vulture” sit. I don’t have a picture of him doing it because I fixed it, but here is a shot of one of my student’s dogs who shall remain nameless to protect his innocence.

He is very cute though isn’t he:).

Okay here is your second cliffhanger video.

In the above frozen video clip you can see the difference in Swagger’s old sitting position and his new one. Love it!

The solution to the problem, you got it, can be found Β on Puppy Peaks which by the way will also have a full video of the teaching of the “Stand” as well.

Which leads me to cliffhanger number three . . . which isn’t a cliffhanger at all, but it could be if you wanted to make it that way:).

This was a very tricky jumpers course from the USDAA Nationals held in Louisville, Kentucky a couple of weeks ago. Many off courses on this one and many places to get those off courses actually. I tricky little course indeed. So how would you handle it?

The cliffhanger here would be not ever knowing how to handle it. If you want to be kept in suspense, don’t watch this next video of Encore and I running the course because we did pretty well:).

Okay so really only one cliffhanger and it isn’t even a cliff hanger if you subscribe to PuppyPeaks. Today I am grateful for all of the people that volunteered pictures of their vulturing dogs for my video. I am not sure that you can take a bird name and make it a verb but I just did so I guess you can if you own a blog.


  1. Patricia Byrne says:
    Wednesday, November 9, 2011 at 9:51pm

    Correcting the vulture stance, can that only be seen thru Puppy Peaks


  2. Jackie says:
    Tuesday, November 8, 2011 at 10:51am

    Susan, this is totally off topic, but it is FREEZING here! What is the name of the company from New Zealand, I think, that makes the warm dog coats you use?


  3. Willy says:
    Monday, October 31, 2011 at 10:06am

    Susan, I’ve watched your video of the jumpers course many, many times and I just can’t figure out what you did between jump 15 and 16. As Encore was clearing the bar on jump 15, you used your off hand for some reason- almost like a reverse flow pivot. Or maybe you were indicating collection? I’m really not sure. It seems you used a push to get her over 16. Can you elaborate on your handling between 15 & 16? Thanks much!


    • Willy says:
      Monday, October 31, 2011 at 10:09am

      oh- by the way, you well know that SO many people blind crossed between 18 & 19. It was neat to see how you rear crossed, and it was just as fast. Encore’s bounce jump between 19 & 20 was so fast and so smooth! I really enjoyed that!


  4. Jan says:
    Friday, October 28, 2011 at 1:33pm

    A tricky little course, indeed! I had the priviledge of watching you and Encore run that course and it was awesome. Such tight turns and those fast weaves…

    I want to thank you for taking the time to speak with me when I approached you at Louisville. I have followed your blog for several years,participated in Recallers 1.0, 2.0 and am now a Puppy Peaker and feel like you are my “coach” even tho’ all my contact has been online. Recallers made such a difference in my young dog’s recalls (still working on building those distractions). Love seeing your training with Swagger on Puppy Peaks. At Louisville, I got a glimpse of Swagger sitting in the stands – such a handsome boy!

    The thing I enjoyed most about watching your runs at the USDAA Nationals was the teamwork between you and Feature and Encore. Maybe things did not always go the way you wished but you kept your connection with your dogs before, during and after the runs. This was not always so evident in some other competitors runs.


    • Susan says:
      Friday, October 28, 2011 at 3:08pm

      @Jan Some times, especially at “big” events people allow their dreams to get between them and their dogs, I am sure they would feel badly about it when they go home and look at their videos. Your comments about watching me with my dogs were very heart warming, thank you.


  5. Chris Hill says:
    Friday, October 28, 2011 at 10:02am

    That jumpers was really pretty. Perfectly handled.


  6. Kim says:
    Friday, October 28, 2011 at 4:06am

    Hello Susan.

    That was a great run. Thank you for sharing it with us. Combining your video and the courseplan makes learning proper handling a lot of fun!

    One question though. The video does not fully show the start of your run. Did you post yourself at obstacle nr 2 while leaving Encore in a sit stay at the start?


    • Susan says:
      Friday, October 28, 2011 at 7:55am

      @Kim, I left her at the start and lead out between one and two, starting moving and then came to a complete stop when she was 1-2 strides away from jump 3.


  7. Shelley says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:18pm

    Brilliant run!


  8. Chris Hill says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:11pm

    I have been unable to view the stand video on your facebook page. I have Internet Explorer. That is what I have. Is there any other way we get this video. I am a bit annoyed this is only for folks that have other browsers.


    • Susan says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:22pm

      Chris you can see it on Puppy Peaks or you can download another browser, Firefox or Google Chrome work and both are free downloads. We do our best to get it through to everyone but it is a limitation of Internet Explorer so if you are going to be annoyed be annoyed with them, we are doing the best we can to make sure as many people as possible share the information!


    • Melissa Blazak says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:57pm

      I had trouble at some point with IE and had to download Firefox. Worked like a charm.


  9. Alaska says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 2:23pm

    That is some freakin’ awesome handling on that jumpers course…and a dog that really knows her job too.


  10. Rachel says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 1:53pm

    This is right on time. I am finally getting my dog to focus forward by doing grid work and there it is the “vulturing”. Mals do it too …


  11. Lori Kline says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 11:33am

    I love the hand targeting! I have used it for years to give my bouncy mini-aussie an outlet when he gets excited (better to jump up to the hand than the body). I now use it to gauge his stress levels at trials. If I don’t get a jump up to the hand or it’s weak, I know I have work to do to get him pumped up. I now use it for all my dogs to de-stress and give off some energy.
    I haven’t taught a pop up into stand with it before though. I have put the hand in front of the dog to get him to walk forward into stand. I do like the pop up though. Should be an easy transition. I’ll have to try it for sure!



  12. Jodi Altman says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 7:48am

    The CUTEST!!!!


    • Melissa Blazak says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:23am

      He is always VERY handsome!


    • Susan says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:44am

      @Jodi aaaah you’re giving it a-w-a-y!


    • Deb Bogart says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 9:15am

      @Jodi….I thought that was 2Do πŸ™‚ Very cute indeed!


      • Melissa Blazak says:
        Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 2:01pm

        Hey, at least I didn’t say his name!

  13. Lee Ann McNeil says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 6:44am

    I would like to see how to teach the pop up stand. I would like to teach my young sheltie female.


    • Susan says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:45am

      @Lee Ann so your options are: 1) check out that Facebook Page or 2) See it on Puppy Peaks!


      • Laurie Graichen says:
        Saturday, October 29, 2011 at 8:03pm

        I’ve looked all over the Puppy Peaks site and can’t find the Stand video. Am I totally dense or hasn’t it been posted yet? Did find the Vulture one though.

  14. Linda says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 6:44am

    Very nice run! Love me some Encore. I would have handled it the exact same way (mostly cause I would have been following you around on the walk through)


  15. Jan V says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 6:27am

    Very impressive run with Encore. This was a subtly tough course, and many dogs were eliminated (from 3 to 4, taking the off course #9). I had a decent go at it, but a knocked bar at 15.


  16. Claire says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 5:52am

    I’d like to study the jumpers, but can’t read the numbers either.

    Thanks for all the cool vids and great ideas !!


  17. MRB says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 4:57am

    I get full crouch with a stand – start… but sometimes she bunches up like she’s standing all fours on a perch. Possibly because my criteria is not to move the front paws but I sometimes forgive creep with the back paws…


    • Susan says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:46am

      @MRB if your dog is balanced over jumps and not knocking them and she is 6 or 7 years old, I wouldn’t worry about it. BUT if this is a young dog that back paw movement will be taking her somewhere . . .:)


  18. Dianne says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 3:16am

    We have been working the stand. Fly lands after the touch and returns right back to a sit as soon as the feet hit the ground.


    • Susan says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:48am

      @Dianne, go and review the video and do more of the pop-up-and-feed stage with the dog up in front of you. Heel position has a strong trigger to sit for many dogs, doing more out in front first will help to generalize what you want.


      • Melissa Blazak says:
        Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 2:08pm

        I am trying out and polishing how to use a hand signal for a good utility moving stand. Will check that out. Good timing!

        Also have quite a bit of vulture in my poodle at times…again you’re like a mind reader!

      • Dianne says:
        Saturday, October 29, 2011 at 1:52am

        We are getting the stand! Thank you.

        We are having fun, it is so cool when we “get it” for something new. It is fun to look back at things we worked on to get that are just habit now.

  19. Vin says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 3:14am

    Exciting, will log onto puppy peaks now try to fix my vulture sit which comes complete with front leg sliding forward….which I’ve managed to bandaid by asking for a down instead!


  20. Polly says:
    Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 2:49am

    Can’t see the numbers on the course plan πŸ™


    • Deb Bogart says:
      Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 6:08am

      For those that can’t read the numbers, here’s a link to it on the USDAA website.


      A tricky, but also a very fun course πŸ™‚ being in Susan’s group I was able to catch most of her runs. Encore and Feature gave it their all as always.


      • Susan says:
        Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 8:45am

        @Deb, thanks for helping out!

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