competition dogwalks.

Lu has bad dogwalks in competitions. More strides, not full-speed running, no separation at the end and I’m lucky if a back toe gets in the contact zone. NOT the kind of contacts I want. This weekend we hit 0/3 nicely. The judges let 2 of them be ‘in’ and I told her she was good for those 2 but they weren’t, really.
So why?
Maybe confidence in different locations/trial environment? I don’t think the arousal level is a factor because when we play the crazy balls game she’s super excited and fast but still hits. So maybe confidence at being on unfamiliar dogwalks? That should be solved easily enough: just do more dogwalks. Enter ‘not for competition’ runs with her and bring in a toy to play with if she hits them… Do a loop and put her on again if she doesn’t. Enter ‘gamblers’ runs and just do loops with the dogwalk involved.
One other factor is that all 3 of the exits this weekend were to the side. 2 of them were into empty space then turn (which we’ve worked on a little bit at home) and the other was to a bar about 7-8 meters ahead but In fact you wanted to pull her to the left & do the broad. Ok, so then maybe running into empty space is also a problem. I can fix that too- just go to a thrown ball into the empty space to get her in the habit of just running forward. I suppose I could do the same thing with discriminations, sometimes throw ahead, sometimes pull to the side and throw.
I just really wanted to be a bit of a running-contact pioneer, y’know, but she makes it look so dodgy and untrained at a trial!!!

We did have an awesome jumping run though where i threw in a risky blind cross cos I didn’t want to do a rear cross and it just worked so nicely and one lady after was raving to me about how smooth it looked which was lovely. And I know this judge planned it as a rear cross cos he doesn’t believe in blinds but I showed him! 😉


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