Some Agility games for my kangaroo dog?

Discussion in 'Agility & Flyball' started by Shamas' mom, May 27, 2018.

  1. Shamas' mom

    Shamas' mom Registered Users

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    So I had my new(ish) rescue out with my dad's dogs last night, and the two of them are in Agility classes. Shamas jumped the 4 feet to the outdoor stage, no problem...3 times.

    It makes me wonder...given Shamas' love of jumping...perhaps some Agility-type games would help with his distraction/energy levels? He came to me untrained, and I don't have the transportation to get to an actual aginilty trainer....but perhaps there's something I can do in my large back yard?

    The first thing we had to teach him was not to jump, as when he plays, he likes to stand on his back legs and jump like a kangaroo. Which worries me a bit, because we have hardwood floors. we now allow him to "up" but he knows not to jump ON the person inviting him, he will stand in front of, and "high five"...which fulfills his desire to jump, without us getting leapt on.

    The one thing that I'd hesitate to teach him is jumping OVER things-we're in the city center, and he's unpredictable around other dogs...I'd hate to see him jump a fence to "defend his territory" or pull a Toby(my dad's dog) and take a run around the neighbourhood just because he feels like it(though THAT's unlikely given his fear of traffic)
     
  2. selina27

    selina27 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Hi, I've just started agility with Cassie, who is 2 now. She also has kangaroo legs!
    I've done a lot of games with her on walks to keep her closer on walks, mostly find it games, hiding treats on tree stumps and log stacks which these days involve her love of jumping, perhaps in your environment that isn't possible, but the other thing is the leashon/leashoff games from Absolute Dogs, and also their boundary games which I think give a good foundation for agility, I've found it so for Cassie anyway.
    @snowbunny will probably be of more help, she has recently bought some equipment to use at home.
     
  3. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Agility I think is good at teaching control. As in dogs going slow enough to perform controlled actions, not just the running selter smelter for speed fast as possible around a course.
    The feet need to touch the beginning and end of an A frame for instance, no launching from the top to get th the next obstacle!
    It should be fairly easy to set up a course if you have a garden. A plank to walk along to mimic a wobble board, cricket stumps for weave poles, hula hoop or bike tyre to go through, basic jumps from boxes and canes. We used a kids play tunnel too.
    Just use your imagination. Watch some you tube videos to give youideas. Equipment can be bought stage by stage if you like it, or built if you are handy.
    We loved agility.
    It's great for self control.
     
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  4. selina27

    selina27 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Yes, completely agree, and I think it good because they have to work with you. I have found that doing the AD games has helped me get Cassie to focus.
     
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  5. Jes72

    Jes72 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Agility can involve a lot of brain games as well as some physical fun. You can make jumps out of broomsticks and cones or pvc piping, and even old tyres. As well as walk the plank, a tunnel and weave polls there’s lots of fun to be had. Agility jumps don’t need to be high, only a foot to a foot and a half, so much lower than a fence. There are also lots of touch or target activities.

    You’ve done a great job at getting him to high five rather than have a Labrador hanging off the top of your head (i’ve been there, know what it’s like,).
     
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  6. snowbunny

    snowbunny Registered Users

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    We have a company called Zooplus that covers most of Europe and they have reasonable cost agility equipment. My husband made wooden jumps for us because he's very handy and they are expensive if you want nice looking ones.

    It is great for teaching self control and building relationship with your dog. It's very much a team activity, with you having to be very careful with your body language to direct your dog to the right piece of equipment. It's only when you start that you realise how much more there is to it than just running around pointing at stuff :D

    Even without equipment, you can start on some basic behaviours, such as weaving through your legs, start-line stays (so where your dog has to sit still until you release him to run forwards to something hugely exciting), object wrapping, which you can do with a post or a tree, spins to the left and to the right. Everything needs to be done in both directions and starting from different spots - so with the spins, you might ask for them to be done in front of you, to your left side and to your right side. Teach him to jump onto a low non-slip table (or you can use whatever you want) and stay there for a few seconds until released to the next hugely exciting thing. It's easy to teach a dog to go onto a table but less easy to get them to stay there when there's something massively exciting they want to do off the table. And teach him with steps the concept of keeping his back feet on the steps while his front feet are off - this is a foundation for hitting the targets on the contact equipment.

    Yep, there's loads that can be done without equipment, and it's all fun, fun, fun :)
     
  7. selina27

    selina27 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    At my agility class we are teaching them to weave by having the poles far apart to start with, so that just run between the poles and then gradually move them closer together so that they begin to weave. Just for interest.:)
     
  8. snowbunny

    snowbunny Registered Users

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    My lot all learnt to weave through a combination of luring and the "passa/aquí" cues ("wrap" and "here"). But there is another way that I want to try called 2x2. As much as my lot are getting towards understanding the way that we've done it, I think 2x2 will give a far more solid foundation. You can see it here:

     
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  9. selina27

    selina27 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    That looks a great way to do it!

    The way we are doing at class is beginning to work, it's similar in that we just worked on getting them to run between the poles the first week, gradually moving them in. I haven' t done it with her between classes, but last week she was definitely weaving and so was Jack, one of the GSDs. We haven't got as far as a straight line yet though!
     
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  10. snowbunny

    snowbunny Registered Users

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    @selina27 I've started the 2x2 method with my lot and it's really brilliant! You can see them working it out and I'd recommend it as definitely worth a try.
     
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  11. Rosie

    Rosie Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    2 x 2 really works!
     
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