I just uploaded this new video where you get to see many of the elements of the Handling360 program in action. Yesterday I pushed away from the computer to run my dogs an an agility trial in Michigan USA, and I videoed my runs to share with you.
Since I have been focused so much on putting together all of the elements of Handling360, I haven’t had a lot of time for my dogs. To be truthful this one day of trialling was the first time my dogs and I have gone to an agility trial in over two months!
Using the video analysis tool (demonstrated in the ebook and video two of our series) you will see how the combination of my verbal, physical and positional cues really helped both of my dogs negotiate around the challenges on these courses. There are also three instances over the five runs where I was late with these cues and my dog’s turns where not as tidy.
My day started at 4 am as I had a 3 1/2 hour drive to the trial. While I drove, I thought about my goals for the day both for myself and my dogs. Potentially, this was an important trial for us as they were offering qualifiers for the USDAA Nationals, AND it was being judged by Peggy Hammond, one of the judges Feature and I will see at the WAO later this year in Italy. after soooo much time off I decided all I was going to focus on was confidence. I chose handling that was fast but minimized risk of confusion for my dogs in order to grow in our confidence. Swagger’s confidence in what I was asking, my confidence in knowing that he would perform as cued. And, I wanted to add to the great confidence and trust I have with Feature.
Take Home Points
As I wrote about in the free eBook, “A Guideline to Effective Video Review,” (which you can download when you watch our video series) I like to end my video review with key “Take Home” points for myself. (My overall impressions of what I was seeing.) Here were mine;
1. The combination of verbal and physical cues have two MAJOR impacts:
(1) It helps my dogs to drive with power EVERYWHERE! Believe it or not that has made each of them faster than ever before.
(2) It makes a huge difference when handling dogs whose ground speed is faster than yours! Especially with Swaggers running contacts as obvious from this video clip!
2. My last take away is that having more than 2 months between trials in the past would have shown up in my teamwork with my dogs. Less than perfect timing with excited dogs who haven’t trailed in a while would have resulted in many wider turns and dropped bars. Since my new method of handling timeliness has replace the element of critical “timing”, it is much easier to have great teamwork with my dogs regardless if the conditions are perfect.
Would love to hear what your feedback is after watching these videos. If you haven’t seen my latest Handling360 video series they will be available only until this Wednesday at midnight.
I guess I made a mistake when posting one of the course maps so here is the proper map of the Masters Challenge Standard class!
Today I can’t help but be grateful (did you see the sweatshirt I was wearing?) for my two dogs who amaze me more each time I run them!