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Old 12-29-2012, 06:58 PM
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Order for training?

I've been giving some thought to what I'd do if I was starting from scratch to train a dog and have some questions to pose.

Is there a preferred order for training for and entering the various competitive events? For instance I've heard some people say rally is good to do before obedience. If you wanted to do agility and obedience is there a natural order?

If you're interested in multiple events is it better to focus on one at a time or can you bring a dog along in multiple events simultaneously?

Are there events where training for each conflicts with the other?

On a similar note, do you think that the socialization required for therapy work is inconsistent with the focus and attention needed for success in higher level obedience and agility? Or are the types of dogs successful in each not typically good at the other.
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Old 12-29-2012, 07:04 PM
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I really think this comes down to you as a trainer and your ability to put the time in.

You mentioned agility above, and I immediately thought about Max's Mom - who hasn't posted here in AGES (probably due to her working with her dogs instead of hanging out online). o_O Her golden is 2 years old now (I think?) and already has a mix of agility, obedience, rally, and hunt titles. <- And for both UKC and AKC.
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Old 12-29-2012, 07:31 PM
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I train and show in rally, obedience, agility and field. I find a lot of overlap and the basics are very similar.

All sports needs confidence, stays, ability to work close and far, ability to take direction, ability to retrieve and leave your side etc. Recalls, sits, downs, hand signals.

For my puppy he is learning stay (obedience, agility & field); recall (obedience, agility & field), motion & core stability (agility), tug, set ups etc which will be the foundation work - mostly learning to learn & play with me.

As a general rule I show all venues intermixed as the dogs are ready (for example Faelan has his CDX and is working for his UD, has his Exc Agility title and almost his Exc JWW, has his JH and is working towards his SH, has his RA etc). His schedule is fairly impressive during show season since he may have obedience one day, filed the next day and agility weekends sandwiching

The biggest conflict I have is the front in obedience vs the return to heel in field when Faelan (and Brady when he gets there) there is something in the dogs mouth - not an issue for non-retrieves though.

Many people find it better to concentrate on one sport at a time; in which case I'd recommend obedience first
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Old 12-29-2012, 09:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunrise View Post
I train and show in rally, obedience, agility and field. I find a lot of overlap and the basics are very similar.

All sports needs confidence, stays, ability to work close and far, ability to take direction, ability to retrieve and leave your side etc. Recalls, sits, downs, hand signals.

For my puppy he is learning stay (obedience, agility & field); recall (obedience, agility & field), motion & core stability (agility), tug, set ups etc which will be the foundation work - mostly learning to learn & play with me.

As a general rule I show all venues intermixed as the dogs are ready (for example Faelan has his CDX and is working for his UD, has his Exc Agility title and almost his Exc JWW, has his JH and is working towards his SH, has his RA etc). His schedule is fairly impressive during show season since he may have obedience one day, filed the next day and agility weekends sandwiching
That's a dizzying array of activities. It does suggest it's more a question of time and commitment of the trainer but the strengths and weaknesses of the particular dog must play a big role.
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Old 12-30-2012, 01:01 AM
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LOL - I have a tendency to get bored so I like variety. And I think dogs learn from dark timing as well - that is, Mon they might be worked, I might work them obedience/rally Tues; agility Wednesday; next day off; games/core conditioning Fri; on the weekends whatever I can. Field is usually 2 or 3 times a week but this is now day training with my mentor who I trust implicitly. I just do not have enough daylight available for do field training myself anymore. This schedule allows time for them to just kind of sleep on things and I think this helps learning. They also get whole weeks off with just play, hiking etc.

I have limited training time (work long hours and have a minimum of 2 hours commute) so I find this kind of schedule helps. Plus I do a lot of planning on my lunch hours so I can train each dog 10-15 minutes and be done ; including play & reward time.

My pup is just starting to truly be house trained so I can start training more regularly again with the older dogs - they have been missing their sessions while I have been in pee/poop/manners patrol & mode.

My dogs used to do therapy work and do obedience and agility so these activities can mesh very well - I feed raw and do minimal vaccinations so Delta Society is out for me now.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:12 AM
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You can overlap all you like, it is limited by your time and dedication.
Before Fisher was two he had CDX, TD, JH, rally and was shown in the breed ring.
He had his UD before I started advanced field work which was nice to have a training rapport with the dog before starting down that unknown path.
Honestly I don't know if the order has a big impact on them mentally if the trainer is experienced and good. Slater I've done primarily field work and he is much more advanced in field than in obedience, the opposite of Fisher.
I think my biggest take-home lesson was, do the most physically demanding sport when they are young...oh what could have been if I had started advanced field work when Fisher was a puppy and not 5 years old! I would assume agility is the same way. If you wait until they are older for advanced field and agility you can start running into soundness issues/injuries that just don't happen so much with a younger dog. Obedience/rally and tracking are much less demanding on their bodies and are fine for an older dog.
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Old 01-02-2013, 07:44 AM
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One thing I would like to add to my previous posts. I do not jump my younger dogs for obedience or agility. They are trained for shadow handling using 'jump bumps' between the uprights, but to protect their growing joints and structure I wait until they are about 14 months old before they see bars and then several more months before they are moved up to a height that requires more than a hop (I might use the bars at 12 inches but more likely at 8 inches). I wait to train the broad jump until they are over 18 months.

My Brady is enrolled in online courses that also follow these guidelines; taking your time and building in fun, drive, desire to work and the fundamentals will never come back to bite you

FYI: you probably know this, but 'jump bumps' are short lengths of 4 or 8 inch PVC piping cut in half lengthwise to form a bump. Also used as stride regulators, on top in AFrames if there is a gap etc.
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Old 01-02-2013, 07:55 AM
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Sharon - can you describe or show what a jump bump is? Are you laying it/them flat on the ground between the uprights?

Because I had so much trouble getting Jacks introduced to jumps as late as I did (24 months, after I had xrays of his hips and elbows done), I was trying to figure out when and how to start Bert.
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Old 01-02-2013, 08:05 AM
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Kate;

Here is a link - they are easier to see than describe If you have skills in building stuff you can probably make them for a dollar or 2. I have agility jumps so put the jump bumps between the uprights where a bar would normally go - your high jump would probably also allow for this (mine don't until the pup can jump 8 inches). They are used to teach the concepts without stressing the growing joints.

Clean Run: Jump Bumps
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Running on silent paws beside me now and forever King , Rowdy and Casey

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