A Critical Key To Training the Running Contact?Friday, January 30, 2009
I have had a few of you email me privately and one post to my blog why I thought a “fool-proof method of running contacts was unlikely.” I don’t pretend to have all of the dog training answers and I am not a pessimist about ANYTHING. However, I do believe I have a pretty good grasp of how behaviours are learned and how they are eroded. That is why I think a fool-proof, cookie-cutter running contact method is unlikely. Notice I didn’t say impossible, I am still holding out hope. But lets look at the facts, there is yet to be anyone running at the elite level of the sport that has produced a running contact with more than one dog that has stood up for the dogs’ entire career. I have trained 3 dogs to run their contacts and I would say they are 95-99% successful. But that is not 100%. I know without a doubt I can train a dog that can compete at the World Championships level of this sport with stopped contacts and have that dog go through his entire career without ever missing a contact. I have done it with Buzz. I can’t say that about the running contact. Although Encore has only missed one of her running A Frame’s that one was unfortunately at the World Championships, it cost our team a place on the podium. I am still working at it because I would love to have a method I could teach my students, knowing they will have success. So far no one has showed me that has happened. No disrespect to those of you that may cry “foul” because your dog may happen to look good at this point, but lets see these dogs when they have put in a career running contacts and then lets see that be followed up with more dogs that can do the same, finish a career with their running contacts AS RELIABLE as they started it. Then we are on to something. I am a person that sees the possibilities where few others see them. I will continue to experiment, any of you that think you are onto something I have over looked please let me know!
In the meantime I will leave you all to ponder this video and the methodology that you may have overlooked while training your own running contacts. Have a great weekend everyone, I am off to Omaha for fun and games with all of those crazy mid-westerners. Super bowl party here we come!
Today I am grateful to be heading south for the weekend, oh wait, it is Nebraska . . . south of Canada does not necessarily always equate to warmer weather