So we had our first week of new dogs in the class (W2) and it was a rather noisy class but I think everyone enjoyed themselves. This week (W3) everyone has been practicing really well at home and I was very impressed with all the dogs and their owners. Those that had been having a few problems in the first week with the down are now all downing with no problem. This week we are taking the lure out of the equation and a few of the dogs managed to do this in class and I feel all will be able to do this by next week. I think every dog managed the sit without the lure.
We started heelwork this week and everyone got to do this on their own in class and had their dogs walking nice and close by their left legs. If the dog did get in front everyone knows how to get their dog back into heel position by doing a U-turn. We reviewed the Come and this week put in the sit in front and reach for collar remembering to reach under the dogs head for the collar.
We started teaching the Wait which I feel is one of the commands I probably use the most with my dog. You could tell the people who were already using this command as the dogs stopped immediately and looked up at their owners waiting for the next command.
The Intermediate 1's had a good class this week as we were pushing their Sit and Down stays and using 2nd degree distractions. The heelwork was difficult for them as we were individually weaving around the other handlers whilst the stationery handlers had to keep their dogs attention as the moving dog went past. This was especially difficult for Dizzy and Hektor the two adolescent males as they had to pass each other. Dizzy and Ann did a great job. Hektor managed it but found it very stressful (probably because I did it with him)!
We also did recalls past a distractor (me eating a biscuit) so mean!!! All managed to get their dogs to them even though a few came to me initially!!!
We started distance control this week and all of them managed the down, the sit was a little harder and Dizzy (GSD) just looked at Ann as if to say' you just asked me to down and now you want me to sit, make up your mind'!
Rose and Martha did a good job this week at all the exercises despite being surrounded by all that testosterone!
The Intermediate 2 class were all back last week and we had a really good session this week the all seemed to be having a bit of a wobbly week but saying that they all did really well. Stays we are doing 3rd degree distraction and Penny and Louise were able to go out of sight for 10 - 15 secs. Heelwork is coming along nicely on and off lead, we just need to tidy up the turns. We were doing A-recalls and all managed to get their dogs straight to them and continue walking for a few steps. The sendaways are at various stages - Penny and Theo are going out to a coned area and downing (most of the time), Louise and Rumer have been working at Rumer going out to food on target and Paula and Rusty are going out to target and introducing the down on the target.
The evening beginners is mixed ability but in a few weeks I feel they will all be at the same standard. Raven is the youngest and her and Mike are doing a great job, Georgie when Terry can drag her away from wanting to play can do all that she is asked to do. Terry needs to work of getting her attention, which will come. Natasha and Pippa are our more experienced couple but Pippa is very timid and Natasha is really having to watch her body posture and remember to give lots of gentle praise to encourage Pippa and reassure her she is doing the correct thing. In just a week Natasha has noticed that Pippa is more confident with new experiences and people, so long may it continue.
This week was a brilliant week and reaffirms why I do this job.